If you’ve been hankering for some of that sweet sweet space internet, soon you might get your wish. Australians can now pre-order the Starlink service and satellite on the Starlink website.
The SpaceX owned Starlink is satellite based internet that’s already helping many in the USA connect to the world wide web. The company ships out specially made dishes which connect to the network of satellites, giving people speeds of up to 150Mbps (which is set to improve with more satellites) without relying on any existing infrastructure in their location.
Australians can no doubt relate. Our internet is the stuff of very low, stupid, and frustrating legend. Some of us get lucky, for sure, but others are still on crawling speeds or sometimes nothing at all. With all the blundering around NBN, many have lost faith.
For $709 Aussies can purchase one of the Starlink kits and another $100 will see it delivered. From there it’s currently $139 a month for the service. For those wanting to put a deposit down and secure a spot, you’ll need to fork up $139 immediately. But if you’ve seen how expensive it is to try to get an NBN connection, this is actually a pretty good deal. Especially for folks in remote areas.
Currently the Starlink website only really allows people to register and pay, and you have to put some info in to even see the totals. For my area in Victoria it stated that “Starlink is targeting coverage in your area in mid to late 2021. Availability is limited. Orders will be fulfilled on a first-come, first-served basis. You will receive a notification once your Starlink is ready to ship.”
But that’s all the info you get before Starlink asks for your cash. Honestly, that’s a bit frustrating especially as there’s no real clarification on the site for what service will be like in Australia.
Right now it’s only in Beta in the USA, so even that’s hard to go on. I couldn’t find any solid information about speeds or restrictions specific to Australia. For example, in the States the satellites are locked to a region but are supposed to open up down the line. This means they’re set to be a great solution for people like campers, or who just travel a lot but want good quality net no matter where they are.
Either way, for many this may still be their best option. When your choices are no internet or theoretical space internet, what have you got to lose?
Do you like what you're reading on Byteside? We're building a diverse, remotely distributed team of Australians to cover the digital world we love so much. And we need your support to thrive.
Whether a one-off donation or becoming a monthly supporter, every little helps pay the writers who are working here.
We're not in line for any free money from Facebook or Google. And we're not paywalling any content because we want everyone to be able to access what we do whether they can afford to pay or not. If you're one who can, a few dollars really does help us grow the pool and support writers to do great original work about tech, games and digital culture. Support Byteside now.