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SpaceX has opened pre-orders for Starlink, its satellite broadband system. But depending on where you live, your order may not arrive until later this year.
SpaceX has been distributing beta invites for several months via the Starlink website. However, they have been limited to about 10,000 users, most of whom are based in the northern US and lower Canada.
On Monday, users noticed a pre-order option on the Starlink website. Type in your email address and where they live, and the website will let you know when Starlink will arrive in your area. In the meantime, you can pay a refundable $99 pre-order fee to get in line.
“Orders will be fulfilled on a first-come, first-served basis,” the website says. However, a disclaimer adds: “Depending on location, some orders may take 6 months or more to fulfill. Placing a deposit does not guarantee service.”
According to the website, Starlink won’t be arriving in many localities in the US until mid-year or late 2021. We tried various addresses for Oregon, California, New York, Florida, and Texas, and got the same arrival date for all.
The pre-order fee will be applied to the customer’s first month of service, which costs $99 a month. Subscribers will also have to pay a $499 one-time fee for the Starlink router/Wi-Fi modem.
Although Starlink is only serving about 10,000 users right now, last week SpaceX revealed “hundreds of thousands” of people across the US previously signed up on Starlink.com to learn about its availability. The satellite internet service is still in beta, but it’s already capable of supplying fast internet—around 150 Mbps/30 Mbps—to customers in rural areas. As a result, users suffering from slow broadband have been scrambling to try out Starlink.
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