Home Tech News Satellite Internet from SpaceX: What you need to know

Satellite Internet from SpaceX: What you need to know

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There is no doubt that the internet connection in the Philippines has improved over the past few months. It is still quite slow compared to our neighbors in the SEA, such as Thailand and Singapore. Also, getting a fast, smooth connection is particularly difficult in non-urban areas and the provinces. Finding a provider who can deliver such a connection is a real challenge.

But the good news is there is always room for improvements because Starlink Internet Services Philippines Inc. has had its registration approved by the National Telecommunications Commission!

You might be wondering why Starlink? Well, this internet service provider’s main goal is to improve the internet connection in rural areas far away from metropolitan locations. Per the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), SpaceX intends to build and deploy a Starlink gateway in the Philippines by June 2022, before President Duterte’s term is over. According to the official website of Starlink, it is currently scheduled to be released within the fourth quarter of this year.

Sounds interesting, right? Well, don’t go yet because here is all you need to know about Starlink, from how it works to when it will be available in the Philippines; here is everything you need to know about Starlink.

What is Starlink?

In terms of satellite Internet, Starlink is a company that sends data via radio signals through space instead of using cables or optical fibers for data transmission. SpaceX has developed a constellation of satellites (or network) that it has launched into low-Earth orbit, making this possible.

It is imperative to understand that satellites far from Earth experience much higher latency. This is defined as the time it takes for data to be transmitted between two places. In addition to the fact that Starlink satellites are launched in low orbit, 60 times closer to the Earth than a normal satellite, they provide high-speed, low-latency communication.

starlink-latency

By 2020, more than 1,200 satellites will be in operation, creating a strong network of high-speed broadband. There is a plan by Starlink for the number of satellites to grow from the current 4,000 to as many as 40,000 in the next few years, further improving the network’s data speeds.

Because Starlink does not need to install wires for connecting, it has the potential to provide high-speed internet access to areas that are under-connected, under-reachable, and “off the grid.”

Do you know how Starlink works?
Starlink kit users who are early adopters of the system are provided with everything they need to get their system up and running, including the Starlink dish, a WiFi router, power supply, and cables, as well as tripod or roof mounting equipment.

In this case, a Starlink dish that has been properly installed and set up will connect to and communicate with a Starlink satellite that provides high-speed broadband internet. This connection is like a single beam of light between these two entities. This means that the beam moves as well along with the satellite. The internet connection will also be interrupted when an obstruction in the beam path interrupts the beam connection.

List of the Pros of Starlink Internet.

starlink pros

There is no doubt that Starlink internet is faster than traditional satellite internet services. There can be no comparison between the speed of Starlink and that of a normal satellite internet service. 

What makes Starlink faster than other satellite internet services? 

Other providers, except Starlink, beam down the internet via geostationary satellites. A geostationary satellite is a satellite with an operational altitude of around 35,000 kilometers. When a signal is sent from a user terminal to a geostationary satellite, the electromagnetic waves are sent from the user terminal to the geostationary satellite. It is then the response from the geostationary satellite that reaches the user receiver. This means the round trip for the internet is 70,000 km. 

Starlink is a service available across the globe.

starlink-across-the-globe

The location of your home does not matter, as Starlink internet is available wherever you are. 

The service is available worldwide, even in the middle of the ocean. We are surrounded by thousands of low earth-orbiting satellites, which is why the signal can reach every corner of the globe. The Starlink internet provides a reliable and fast internet connection no matter where you are.

Installing Starlink is very simple.

Starlink dishes are very easy to install. It does not require any specialized knowledge or skill. An ideal place to do this is in a place with a clear view of the skies. As soon as you have mounted the mounting bracket, you must attach the Starlink dish and point it towards the sky. Once the dish is turned on, it will automatically adjust for optimal performance. Sounds easy, right?

starlink-dish

However, despite the good stuff related to Starlink, there are still some cons. Which are listed below:

Urban areas have a slower internet connection.

In comparison to cable internet, there is one major disadvantage that Starlink has. Among Starlink’s satellites at any given time, a fixed number of satellites are positioned over a specific location. Every user in that location has access to the same amount of bandwidth. In other words, more people in cities share the same bandwidth than there are in rural areas. As a result, Starlink’s speed in cities will be slower than the speed in the suburbs.

It is not portable.

Compared to cellular internet, Starlink is not as portable as it could be. However, even though the dish can be mounted over a boat or RV, it does not have the compact size to be carried easily. 

During bad weather, there may still be a disruption of service.

It is also possible for satellite services to be disrupted during a rainstorm, a storm, or a solar storm. But as we all know, this problem is also real for cable internet.

SEE ALSO: DICT Plans to Prioritize Rural Internet Access
Kacific – Is Satellite Broadband Internet using Ka-Band Technology a good choice for you?

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