German Minister Plans To Set Up A Voucher Program For Rural Households To Access SpaceX Starlink Broadband Service

Evelyn Arevalo by Evelyn Arevalo May 18, 2021

German Minister Plans To Set Up A Voucher Program For Rural Households To Access SpaceX Starlink Broadband Service

SpaceX aims to deliver Starlink internet globally. The company started to provide satellite broadband internet service in Germany early March. With approximately 1,677 satellites in orbit, the constellation is already serving over 10,000 Starlink beta customers who pre-ordered via Starlink.com. This week, SpaceX founder and CEO of Tesla Elon Musk met with the Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure of Germany Andreas Scheuer at the Tesla Gigafactory in Berlin. Location where his electric company will manufacture the Tesla Model Y vehicle. The factory is still under construction and expected to begin operations until July 2021. Musk shared this afternoon that he was “Going through all aspects of next gen[eration] Model Y production system with team. Lot of talented people at Giga Berlin. This place will rock!” he said in response a TESMANIAN article, linked below.

After meeting with Musk, German Minister Scheuer said that they plan to ‘incentivize Starlink to improve broadband internet in rural areas,’ according to @Alex_Avoigt on Twitter who is familiar with the matter. Minister Scheuer plans to set up a voucher program for rural households to access SpaceX Starlink broadband service. “We want to help here quickly and unbureaucratically, more or less as a stopgap until the fixed network is also expanded in these areas....” Minister Scheuer said, “(...) by the private sector or with funding. That's why I would also like to set up a voucher program that would enable the households affected to improve their Internet coverage in the short term. (…) In this way, we could provide around 200k households nationwide with fast Internet overnight, enabling them to participate digitally,” he said. Scheuer intends to subsidize rural households that have slow internet speed below 10Mbps (megabits per second) with a €500 voucher, according to a local news media report in German language by Online Focus.

Featured Image Source: SpaceX 





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