Starlink, SpaceX’s satellite internet service, will soon be available on select aircraft, with the official launch of Starlink Aviation next year.
The service will provide internet speeds of up to 350 Mbps for each plane outfitted with its Aero Terminal, which is said to be fast enough for video calls, online games and “other high data rate activities.” In addition to an initial hardware fee of $150,000, it will cost $12,500-$25,000 per month.
Starlink Aviation also wants to position itself as a superior alternative to the notoriously poor in-flight internet. According to SpaceX, the service enables passengers to engage in data-intensive activities such as online gaming, streaming and video calls, which are currently not possible with the current in-flight WiFi.
In addition, aircraft will be equipped with a special, low-profile terminal that offers a higher Internet speed than the current in-flight internet. Delivery is scheduled to begin in mid-2023.
According to SpaceX’s support pages, internet connections will be available during taxi, takeoff, flight over land and water, and landing, with a latency of only 20ms. “Because the satellites are in low Earth orbit, there are always satellites overhead or nearby to provide a strong signal at high latitudes and polar regions — unlike geostationary satellites.”
During a recent test flight of JSX between Burbank and San Jose, California, in April, Starlink Aviation was able to provide internet speeds of 100 Mbps.
The sources for this piece include an article in BusinessInsider.