Customers subscribed to SpaceX’s Starlink satellite internet service will soon need to pay more for internet as the company announced its first price hike due to inflation.
Starlink’s hardware now costs C$759, up C$110 from the original price of $649. The monthly service charge has also been increased to C$140, an C$11 increase from the original $129 price. Shipping charges and the base deposit charge remain the same. One email to customers obtained by IT World Canada said that the new subscription rate will come into effect on May 26 for existing customers.
The price increase did not affect Starlink Business, Starlink’s premium tier service launched in February 2022.
The news of the increase first appeared after Starlink customers began receiving emails notifying them of the impending change. According to several news outlets, customers who have preordered the service but have not yet received their hardware will also need to pay more. For them, Starlink will be increasing their hardware costs by C$50 and will charge the new service fee once they’re connected.
The price increase has compounded the frustrations of Canadians waiting for their services to arrive in rural areas. Starlink’s service has been seen as a more affordable and faster alternative to other internet service options in Canada’s underserved areas. With the fees already increasing and the arrival date unknown, users waiting to be connected have taken to social media to express their annoyance.
“I might care if I still wasn’t waiting for my Starlink I ordered a year and a half ago,” wrote Twitter user Lima Charlie.
“I guess I’m so used to getting ripped off that I don’t even recognize it as news anymore,” said ITWC chief information officer Jim Love, who has been using the service since last year. “After this much investment in hardware and getting it set up, it’s difficult to resist a price increase. It’s not like there’s a lot of competition.”
And the delays may continue, at least for Ontario residents. When service availability was checked for addresses in Toronto, Parry Sound and Ottawa, a message on the Starlink website warned that the service may not arrive in those locations until 2023 or later, attributing the lag to maxing out the company’s deployment capacity. The warning appears to only affect Ontario residents, urban or remote, and did not appear when checking random addresses in Vancouver, Saskatoon, and Winnipeg.