elon musk, internet, satellites, starlink, wireless

Elon Musk has just announced on Twitter that SpaceX’s Starlink now also comes in a better, more expensive variant. Appropriately dubbed the Starlink Premium, the service promises to deliver high-speed internet all across the globe, regardless of the location. It comes with a large antenna and all it needs is a clear view of the sky in order to provide access to the internet. However, it also comes with a significant price increase over the standard Starlink subscription fee.

Starlink

According to Starlink’s official website, the new service was made for “the highest demand users,” including small businesses of up to 20 people. Nothing stops regular people from trying it out for themselves, though, but the price tag may put off most potential customers — even those who really want a fast, reliable connection.

elon musk, internet, satellites, starlink, wireless

In order to get Starlink Premium, new users will first have to pay $2,500 for the rectangular antenna, a $500 deposit to reserve the Premium satellite dish, and also a whopping $500 per month for the service itself. This is a massive price hike over the regular Starlink, which costs $499 for the hardware and then $99 a month. What does SpaceX offer for this price?

What does Starlink Premium offer?

elon musk, internet, satellites, starlink, wireless

Starlink promises high connection speeds, although there is a lot of room between the minimum and the maximum offered bandwidth. According to the website, Premium users can expect anywhere between 150-500Mbps in download speeds with a latency of 20-40ms. Undoubtedly, this is an upgrade from the standard Starlink, which offers speeds between 50 and 250 Mbps. Upload speeds are also seeing an upgrade: Premium offers 20 to 40 Mbps compared to the 10-20Mbps of basic Starlink.

SpaceX advertises Starlink Premium as the ideal option for customers living in rural areas. Premium comes with a bigger antenna, which the company promises has twice the antenna capability of Starlink. As the service is aimed at a high-end client base, it also offers 24/7 prioritized support and high performance regardless of weather conditions. Premium antennas will begin shipping in the second quarter of 2022, and orders are already open on Starlink’s website.

While it sounds great on paper, it’s hard to deny that the $500/month price tag is going to put many people off. However, for businesses, Starlink Premium could prove to be a viable alternative — especially in remote areas with very few options for high-speed internet. The speeds are one thing, but the stability of the connection must also be considered. Many reviews on the internet, including this one from Tom’s Guide, praise standard Starlink for its decent speed, but complain about inconsistency and connection drops. If these issues persist in Premium, the service could crash and burn instead of soaring high alongside Elon Musk’s other businesses.

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