SpaceX has filed a request with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in the US to connect its Starlink satellites to aircraft, ships, large trucks, and RVs. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said in a tweet that its Starlink terminals are too big to be connected to Tesla cars. Also Read - Elon Musk's Starlink satellite internet service faces challenge to launch in India, DoT begins scrutiny
“Operation under the requested blanket license will promote competition in the market for in-motion broadband services, to the benefit of drivers, ship operators, and air travelers in the United States and abroad,” as per the FCC filing. Also Read - Starlink satellite broadband service faces challenge in India, Elon Musk led company questioned
For those unaware, Starlink is SpaceX’s internet service where the company aims to construct a satellite internet constellation using thousands of mass-produced small satellites in low Earth orbit to offer internet access. These satellites work in combination with ground transceivers. Also Read - SpaceX Starlink broadband India pre-registration begins: What is it, prices, internet speeds
So far, the company has a total of 1,000 Starlink satellites in orbit in the beta phase. However, Musk says that most of the Earth will be covered by the end of the year once the number of satellites touches 12,000. In the beta phase, Starlink offers data speeds varying from 50Mbps to 150Mbps, with the speeds said to double to 300 Mbps by the end of 2021.
Not connecting Tesla cars to Starlink, as our terminal is much too big. This is for aircraft, ships, large trucks & RVs.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 8, 2021
Connecting Starlink to vehicles is said to ensure connectivity on the go, as per the March 5 FCC filing.
“No longer are users willing to forego connectivity while on the move, whether driving a truck across the country, moving a freighter from Europe to a U.S. port, or while on a domestic or international flight,” the filing read.
SpaceX Starlink India registrations are open
SpaceX Starlink can be pre-registered in India as well, though the service is based on a first-come, first-served basis. Those interested will need to first check whether the service is available in their area on the Starlink website.
In case it is available, the next step is to order Starlink for which users will need to pay a refundable amount of $99, which is around Rs 7,200 on conversion. However, keep in mind that Starlink services will not be available until 2022 and the availability is limited in the beta phase.