SpaceX's Starlink service has expanded its reach to Zambia, marking a significant milestone for the country's digital connectivity. After a year of regulatory and technical preparations, the service officially launched on October 5th. This development follows the granting of an operating license in June and will be managed in Zambia by Paratus Zambia.
Zambia President Hakainde Hichilema celebrated the arrival of Starlink in Zambia, emphasizing the importance of accessible technology and information for all citizens. He expressed his belief that this is a crucial step towards achieving affordable digital access for the entire population. Starlink's pricing in Zambia consists of a hardware cost of 10,744 Zambian kwacha ($505) and a monthly subscription fee of 507 Zambian kwacha ($24) which is a significantly lower cost than the U.S. price of around $120 USD, according to reports from the region.
@Starlink is now live in #Zambia!— Hakainde Hichilema (@HHichilema) October 5, 2023
Access to technology & information, is no longer a luxury for our people.
A great step, as we work towards affordable digital access for all. 🇿🇲 #CMO @InstituteGC https://t.co/eVbDf4j4jL
Approximately 50% of the population in Zambia does not have access to the Internet at all and the majority of the population with access to the internet only access it through smartphones. Starlink is ideal for the region because the network is easy to access from rural and remote communities. The Starlink antenna just needs an electricity source and a clear view of the sky to begin receiving internet signals from SpaceX's Starlink constellation of thousands of satellites in Low Earth Orbit.
Zambia now joins the ranks of African countries benefiting from Starlink's services, becoming the sixth in line after Mozambique, Rwanda, Mauritius, Sierra Leone, and Nigeria. Additionally, Zimbabwe is currently in the process of evaluating Starlink's application for an operating license, which could further expand the company's footprint on the continent.
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Featured Image Source: SpaceX Starlink.com
About the Author
Evelyn Janeidy 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.