Elon Musk’s SpaceX is expanding its Internet connectivity services yet again, this time with a feature that may benefit some customers. Starlink Roam, a new feature introduced by SpaceX, provides Internet access in remote areas across more than 30 countries. This new feature allows users to pause and resume the service at any time and is billed in one-month increments, allowing customers to tailor their service to their specific travel requirements.
The company intends to use low-Earth orbiting satellites, which circle the planet at only about 300 miles above the surface and can significantly improve internet speeds while also reducing latency. The shorter distance and the use of up to 40,000 satellites to power the system in the coming years ensure global coverage with no service interruptions.
Satellite connectivity to the Internet has been available for more than 20 years. Hughes engineers used satellite technology to transmit large files in 1996, cutting internet download times from over an hour to just 90 seconds. HughesNet, the first national, high-speed satellite internet service, was launched soon after. EchoStar is the parent company of HughesNet.
Starlink now offers global roaming https://t.co/WlRNSDfwJ6
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 15, 2023
HughesNet, which uses satellites 22,000 miles above the Earth, is one of the most prominent existing providers. SpaceX’s system advances the technology in two significant ways. Customers travelling to locations where connectivity has been unreliable or completely unavailable will now have access to the internet thanks to the addition of Starlink Roam.
Finally, the addition of Starlink Roam to SpaceX’s satellite constellation provides Internet access in remote areas across more than 30 countries, which is a significant benefit for customers who previously could not connect to the Internet. SpaceX’s innovative use of low-Earth orbiting satellites, combined with a pay-as-you-go plan, provides customers with flexibility and affordability, allowing them to tailor their service to their specific travel needs.