Technology SpaceX's Starlink Satellite Internet Orders Reportedly Already Exceed 500,000
Critics take aim at SpaceX’s Starlink, Amazon’s Project Kuiper and other satellite constellations
A coalition of policy groups is asking the FCC to hold off on new approvals for satellite constellations such as SpaceX's Starlink and Amazon's Project Kuiper.These critics cite the risk of catastrophic satellite collisions, concerns about cybersecurity and worries about environmental and health impacts — including impacts on astronomical observations and the beauties of the night sky.
Elon Musk’s SpaceX is having a banner year, and apparently things just keep getting better: On Tuesday, thethat it has received upwards of 500,000 orders for its satellite internet service, Starlink.
“To date, over half a million people have placed an order or put down a deposit for Starlink,” SpaceX operations engineer Siva Bharadvaj said during a launch event broadcasting its 26th Starlink mission.
Starlink is SpaceX’s planned interconnected internet network, which already features thousands of active satellites — an array known in the space industry as a constellation — that are designed to work together in order to deliver high-speed internet to consumers anywhere on the planet.
What SpaceX Starlink Satellites Do and How Many Have Been Launched Into Space
SpaceX is planning to deploy tens of thousands of Starlink satellites in low Earth orbit.The goal of Starlink is to provide superfast global internet coverage with very low latency, even in rural or remote areas that may normally lack reliable connectivity.
Back in December 2020, Starlink won a— to the tune of $885 million — to provide high-speed internet to underserved, rural areas of the U.S. The contract came just two months after SpaceX had begun a , pricing internet service at on top of a $499 upfront cost that includes a user terminal and Wi-Fi router to connect to the satellites.
In its current form, Starlink is already the world’s largest satellite constellation, with more than 1,500 Starlink satellites currently in orbit.
Deployment of 60 Starlink satellites confirmed, completing SpaceX’s 10th Starlink mission this year— SpaceX (@SpaceX)
Despite the announcement of over half a million orders already in play, those numbers are subject to change; as of now, all of those orders are still “completely refundable.” In a Tuesday tweet, Musk himself acknowledged that the preliminary sales numbers were also limited by “high density of users in urban areas.”
“Most likely, all of the initial 500k will receive service,” he wrote. “More of a challenge when we get into the several million user range.”
One rocket has launched a quarter of the SpaceX Starlink satellites and it's not done .
The next Falcon 9 will tie a record and help Elon Musk prove a point.SpaceX on Tuesday will conduct what has become a very routine mission to send another batch of 60 Starlink broadband satellites into low-Earth orbit. This will be the 26th such launch primarily dedicated to Starlink if you count the first group of early test satellites launched in May 2019 (and leave out the Transporter-1 rideshare that carried just 10 Starlinks).