Starlink for the well to do – TTG

SpaceX has revealed a new tier for its Starlink satellite internet service with higher performance but pricing that might make your eyes water, The Verge has reported. Called Starlink Premium, it offers speeds between 150 and 500Mbps with 20 to 40 milliseconds of latency, up from 50 to 250Mbps with the same latency. Upload speeds are also up, from 10 to 20Mbps on the standard plan to 20 to 40Mbps on Premium.

For a performance boost of roughly double, you’ll pay five times more, however. Starlink Premium will cost $500 a month compared to $99 per month for the standard plan. You’ll also pay $2,500 for the antenna and other hardware, compared to $499 for base plan, and will need to leave a $500 deposit to reserve the Premium dish.

SpaceX said the new service will work better in “extreme weather conditions” and customers will get priority 24/7 support. It’s likely to be the only high-speed internet option available in many remote places, where the extra weatherproofing could come in handy

SpaceX announced that Starlink would come out of beta last October, and recently unveiled a new rectangular satellite dish that’s much smaller and thinner than the original round one. The new Premium antenna is apparently larger than that and it supposedly “helps ensure bandwidth for critical operations even during times of peak network usage,” SpaceX said

https://www.engadget.com/space-x-reveals-premium-starlink-tier-with-500-mbps-speeds-for-500-a-month-112815004.html

Comment: It was inevitable. At that price, Starlink Premium will not be for the everyday Joe. Still, it makes a lot of sense for businesses and for isolated rural communities. I can see the Nunavut government installing Starlink Premium service in isolated Inuit villages and towns.

In other Starlink news, the Russian Duma came up with a law fining Russians for using the Starlink network. The possibility of Starlink beaming Western propaganda directly to Russian cellphones is the expressed fear. Roscosmos Chief Rogozin also warned that Starlink satellites can be used for military purposes in the future, including changing the flight path of cruise missiles and managing spy networks. Jeez, all Elon’s trying to do is get to Mars.

I haven’t read anything about China banning the use of Starlink, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it happens. China plans to launch her own 5G satellite network to rival Starlink. Maybe China’s plan is to beat Starlink in direct economic competition. China has complained about her space station having to dodge some of the Starlink satellites. Elon’s satellites have also been dodging space debris left by recent Russian ASAT tests. It’s getting crowded up there.

I composed the above a month ago when Putin and his entire government were busy swearing on their mothers’ graves that any talk of Russia invading Ukraine was pure absurdity. Well, Elon has responded remarkably since the Putin regime proved themselves to be a pack of stinking liars. He started by shipping pallets of Starlink terminals to Ukraine within a few days and arranged for service for all of Ukraine. He then noted that some Starlink terminals near conflict areas were being jammed for several hours at a time. He said his latest software update bypasses the jamming. That’s good stuff. Good for Ukraine and very bad for any authoritarian/totalitarian regime bent on controlling the flow of information to their people. I remember stories of dropping radio receivers behind the Iron Curtain. I don’t know if that’s a true story or not. But I could see getting a bunch of these Starlink terminals distributed across Russia, China and several other places to be a beneficial project. If Elon could miniaturize those terminals to the size of a handset, it would be even better.

I’m reminded of a Warren Zevon song, “Mohammed’s Radio.” That song’s forty five years old and as timely as if it was written today.

TTG

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15 Responses to Starlink for the well to do – TTG

  1. Ishmael Zechariah says:

    re: “when Putin and his entire government were busy swearing on their mothers’ graves that any talk of Russia invading Ukraine was pure absurdity. .. the Putin regime proved themselves to be a pack of stinking liars.”
    TTG,
    Strange words coming from a intelligence officer and an SF who knows all about маскировка. You keep commenting on the ineptness of the Russian military campaign. Stating their actual intentions ahead of time would have been the height of irresponsibility.
    Ishmael Zechariah
    P.S: Can you name me one “head of state” so-called, who is not a stinking liar when duty calls, or out of pure habit?

  2. Pat Lang says:

    I am on the fence about this. My internet provider is an old friend.

  3. Barbara Ann says:

    TTG

    A few days ago Elon “Voltaire” Musk tweeted about other “..authoritarian/totalitarian regime[s] bent on controlling the flow of information to their people”:

    Starlink has been told by some governments (not Ukraine) to block Russian news sources. We will not do so unless at gunpoint.

    Sorry to be a free speech absolutist.

    https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1499976967105433600

  4. TTG says:

    IZ,

    The one move I would chalk up as maskirovka was the lack of forming the assault forces arrayed along the border into combined arms battalion tactical groups. That move convinced the Ukrainians that an invasion was not imminent. However, that may not have been a brilliant piece of maskirovka, just pure military incompetence. Just like trying to conduct an air landing without, at least, suppressing the air and land defenses at the landing site. However, he did convince many, including myself, that the massive buildup was part of a bluff and that he wouldn’t invade and trigger the massive sanctions that were truthfully promised by the West. So maybe you’re right, all his lies were maskirovka hiding his insane and criminal intent and that he believed the threatened sanctions were merely Western maskirovka.

    You are definitely right on one thing. I can’t name one head of state who is not a stinking liar when duty calls or out of pure habit. Too bad all those Putin adorers in the West and even many otherwise reasonable Russophiles took Putin at his word.

  5. FkDahl says:

    Starlink is obviously a dual use technology, developed and launched with support from DOD. Enough said.

  6. optimax says:

    Our president is determined to subsidize fiber optics to rural areas. Wouldn’t it be cheaper to subsidize Starlink to those areas. But the Democrats don’t like Musk even though he’s been cutting edge in green technologies.
    Authoritarian regimes do shut down voices they consider dangerous to their rule. The US, on the other hand, works in concert with social media to shut out whatever they determine to be misinformation. Welcome to the free world.

  7. jimticehurst says:

    Who Needs It..??

    All My old Analog Radios that Played TV Channels Dont Work anymore.
    and The AM FM lays Good..Im Not that High Tech..Old is Gold..
    JT

  8. zmajcek says:

    This makes sense not just for the isolated areas. In highly saturated areas internet availability & quality can be just as bad as in Sahara. It is better to have the option. Those that really need it would pay even more.

  9. kakaouskia says:

    Greetings

    Is it possible to have the premium dish combined with the basic plan?

    I can think of many cases where link stability is more important than speed.

    • Jimmy_W says:

      You can use aluminum foil to extend the basic antenna into the size of the premium one. That will improve the data rate a bit, and achieve the same weather “resistance” as the premium one.

  10. Martin Oline says:

    This could well be the best of all worlds in regards to satellite communication. It likely has an unknown shelf life as it will not last. I recently learned of something called the Kessler Effect or Syndrome. There is a Wiki about it. This deals with the snowball effect of collisions in space creating ever more debris, well, you get the idea. From the Wiki:
    “The fragments can then hit other objects, producing even more space debris: if a large enough collision or explosion were to occur, such as between a space station and a defunct satellite, or as the result of hostile actions in space, then the resulting debris cascade could make prospects for long-term viability of satellites in particular low Earth orbits extremely low.”

  11. walrus says:

    I very nearly signed up for Starlink as a beta tester last year. By all reports it has great performance.

    What stopped me was the likely marketing trajectory after Starlink gets floated on the NYSE. The slicky boys will then want quarterly earnings growth and the easiest way to provide that is to nickel and dime the customers to death by segmenting the offerings.

    You know – “Starlink Premium”, “Starlink Platinum”, “Starlink Family Pack”, ” Starlink Gamer”, etc., etc. Your internet cost won’t be $99 for long and it won’t be going down.

    Seems I didn’t have to wait long to see that process start.

  12. Leith says:

    My son has it and swears by it. He wants me to convert. But I’m leery. I had to give up DirectTV years ago because of high winds frequently nudging the dish out of true alignment.

    And I suspect Walrus is right about the cost continuing to spiral.

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