SpaceX Introduces ‘Premium’ Tier of Starlink Satellite Internet

by Michael Freeman

If you were thinking of trying out SpaceX’s Starlink, your options just expanded a bit. The organization announced it will introduce a “premium” tier of its satellite internet service.

As you might guess from the name, the “premium” Starlink tier is more expensive than the standard service. The premium tier targets businesses and enterprise customers and will cost you five times what the standard service goes for. Starlink Premium requires a $500 fully-refundable deposit, a $2,500 fee for the antenna and router and the monthly service fee is also $500, CNBC reports. For reference, the standard service includes a $99 refundable deposit, a $499 hardware fee, and service is $99 a month.

So, what exactly are you getting if you pay more for the service? According to the official website, “Starlink Premium has more than double the antenna capability of Starlink, delivering faster internet speeds and higher throughput for the highest demand users, including businesses.” SpaceX assures customers they will receive improved hardware, faster service speeds, and priority support. As for the speed you can expect, download speeds will range from 150 megabits per second to 500 megabits per second. The latency range will also be tight, equalling between 20 milliseconds to 40 milliseconds.

Another key difference to note is its “unlimited service locations.” The standard service guarantees its services at a specific service address, but Premium can connect from anywhere. “Order as many Starlinks as needed and manage all of your service locations, no matter how remote, from a single account,” SpaceX stated.

The official website states you can expect premium deliveries to begin in the second quarter of this year.

The Starlink program aims to provide affordable internet to everyone, no matter where you’re located. It does so regularly launching its Starlink satellites into orbit and in mid-January, it hit a huge milestone.

On January 18, SpaceX launched 49 more Starlink satellites on its Falcon 9 rocket. This marked the 2,000th satellite launch to date. Daily Mail confirmed the news, stating the organization plans to regularly launch them this year, just like they did in 2021. Throughout last year, 18 Starlink launches occurred, with nearly 1,000 satellites deploying altogether.

While the number may sound sizable, it’s only going to grow. According to Elon Musk, there could be a total of 42,000 Starlink satellites in low-Earth orbit. As of now, the Starlink beta service is available in 23 countries around the world. More satellite launches increase the number of areas capable of subscribing to the service.

Interestingly, though they launched 2,000 satellites in total, only 1,469 are active. Additionally, 272 are “moving to operational orbit,” Musk reports.

Regardless, the service seems to grow stronger every month and doesn’t show signs of stopping.