Elon Musk Shares SpaceX's Starlink Broadband Network Already Has Over 69,420 Users

Elon Musk Shares SpaceX's Starlink Broadband Network Already Has Over 69,420 Users

SpaceX is already providing Starlink Beta broadband service to 11 countries, including portions of the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, Belgium, France, Austria, Netherlands, Australia, and New Zealand. This week, SpaceX founder Elon Musk announced that the Starlink network has over 69,420 users, a number sequence often used in sophomoric humor. “Starlink simultaneously active users just exceeded the strategically important threshold of 69,420 last night!” Musk said jokingly via Twitter. The company is accepting service pre-orders through its website Starlink.com and already has over half-a-million customers who pre-ordered the broadband service.

Musk also shared that Starlink will soon achieve connecting more users around the world as SpaceX launches more satellites to space. “All 72 orbital planes activate in August, plus many other improvements, enabling global coverage, except for polar regions, which will take another 6 months,” he added. To date, SpaceX has sent 10 satellites to Polar Orbit to serve Arctic regions, including Alaska. “We've successfully deployed 1,800 or so satellites and once all those satellites reach their operational orbit, we will have continuous global coverage, so that should be like September timeframe,” SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell said at a virtual conference with the Macquarie Group (MQG.AX).

Starlink internet will not only serve users on the ground, SpaceX engineers are also developing antenna terminals for aircraft, vehicles, and sea-going vessels. SpaceX Vice President of Starlink and commercial sales Jonathan Hofeller shared early June that the company is in discussions with multiple airlines to connect airplane passengers to Starlink Wi-Fi. “We have our own aviation product in development… we’ve already done some demonstrations to date, and looking to get that product finalized to be put on aircraft in the very near future,” Hofeller said.

Musk also shared this week that the development of the Starlink user terminal for aircraft depends on obtaining authorization. “Schedule driver there is regulatory approval. Has to be certified for each aircraft type,” Musk said. The company is currently working on the development of a Starlink terminal for the “737 & A320” airplanes because “[…] those serve most number of people,” he wrote via Twitter. He also shared that SpaceX is developing the antenna and testing on a Gulfstream aircraft. 

Featured Image Source: MGN

About the Author

Evelyn Arevalo

Evelyn Arevalo

Evelyn J. Arevalo joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover news as a Space Journalist and SpaceX Starbase Texas Correspondent. Evelyn is specialized in rocketry and space exploration. The main topics she covers are SpaceX and NASA.

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