Author Topic: Starlink Starts to Deliver on Its Promise  (Read 875 times)

ergophobe

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Starlink Starts to Deliver on Its Promise
« on: September 25, 2020, 05:52:15 PM »
Starlink successfully tested their laser interlink, a key to the Phase 2 rollout

https://www.teslarati.com/spacex-starlink-space-lasers-first-orbital-test/

This is huge - it means you do not need base stations within LOS to the same satellite that you ping as a user.

Real-world test results from end users are showing speeds of 37Mbps to 91Mbps. Starlink tests claim 102-103Mbps download and upload speeds in the 40-something Mbps range. Both sets of numbers show latency of 18ms. 37Mbps probably sounds slow to most of you.

For rural internet users, though, it is a staggering upgrade. For Starlink, it is essential to its business model. They have to offer at least 25/3 service with latency below 100ms in order to qualify for the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund money as I understand it (see page 18, p. 32).

Starlink Starts to Deliver on Its Promise
https://www.zdnet.com/article/starlink-starts-to-deliver-on-its-satellite-internet-promise/

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So, why aren't we seeing more beta testers or even an early release program? The answer is there aren't enough terminals in the production pipeline. A close reading of the SpaceX FCC request to modify the Starlink satellite constellation orbits reveals SpaceX is "on track to produce thousands of consumer user terminals per month, heading toward high-rate production." If they're on track to produce thousands, that implies they're now only producing hundreds of terminals per month. Put it all together and what I see is that, while Starlink satellites are capable of delivering the broadband goods, it will still be months more before enough SpaceX's CA-based factory can meet the demand for first hundreds of thousands and eventually millions of terminals.

So with 700,000 pre-signups, if they are making 7,000 terminals per month and I'm in the middle of the queue, that's... 50 months. Hopefully they can ramp up to 70,000 per month.

We're definitely not in the first cohort, because

Starlink Impresses Air Force Weapons Buyer In Big Live-Fire Exercise
https://www.investors.com/news/spacex-starlink-impressed-air-force-in-big-live-fire-exercise/

Quote
The Air Force was impressed with how SpaceX Starlink satellites performed during a live-fire exercise earlier this month, according to the service's top weapons purchaser. The service is using the Starlink satellites in tests of its Advanced Battle Management System that will connect air, sea, land and space assets.

rcjordan

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Re: Starlink Starts to Deliver on Its Promise
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2020, 06:22:24 PM »
>700,000 pre-signup

About 6 months ago, all I could do was put in my email & zip code for a notification if/when the service might be available in my area.

ergophobe

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Re: Starlink Starts to Deliver on Its Promise
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2020, 02:47:14 AM »
Uh... yeah, that's what I meant. Sign up to be notified when it's available.

I suspect a huge percentage of those people don't actually want it.

rcjordan

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Re: Starlink Starts to Deliver on Its Promise
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2020, 11:55:07 AM »
>want

Depends on the price.  The only ISP available in my neighborhood is Spectrum.  I consider them to be an unethical, predatory company and would like to see their monopoly broken.

ergophobe

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Re: Starlink Starts to Deliver on Its Promise
« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2020, 12:46:07 AM »
They have announced that it will be $80/month.

To get federal funds for rural broadband, they will need to keep speeds above 25/3 and latency below 100ms. I am going to guess that at least for the first few years, they will struggle to achieve that.

So I think those are your parameters. I honestly was wishing it would be more in the $150/mo range for early adopters. That would keep the merely curious from signing up.

rcjordan

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Re: Starlink Starts to Deliver on Its Promise
« Reply #5 on: September 29, 2020, 09:55:18 PM »
Starlink puts towns devastated by wildfires online for disaster relief workers
https://techcrunch.com/2020/09/29/starlink-puts-towns-devastated-by-wildfires-online-for-disaster-relief-workers/

ergophobe

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Re: Starlink Starts to Deliver on Its Promise
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2020, 12:17:42 AM »
We're counting the satellites until they get this far south. As long as it's reliable, I actually don't even care if it's "slow" by the standards of most of the world.

It remains to be seen how reliable it will be. It should be moving at about 5 miles/second. So if it has line of sight for at best a 90-degree view of the sky, that means a given satellite is in view for maybe 100 seconds. More if you're in North Dakota and still more if you're in an observatory perched on a mountain. It gets worse if the satellite isn't passing straight overhead.

Anyway, I'm guessing that at my location, I need a satellite handoff every two minutes at most. So that means I need 700 satellites serving just my latitude. That's discouraging.