Rural Alaska Natives Hope Elon Musk's Starlink Internet Service Can Level Playing Field


February 5, 2021

Official SpaceX Photos, via Wikimedia Commons

SpaceX Starlink, an upcoming satellite-beaming internet service, has begun its testing to offer high-speed internet to remote tribal areas in the U.S. where broadband is notoriously spotty, throttled and expensive.

Since 2019, business magnate and Tesla CEO Elon Musk has sought approval from the Federal Communications Commission to launch more than 1,000 satellites into orbit in an effort to achieve global internet connectivity. The satellites, currently in "beta" testing mode, beam high-speed broadband connectivity to remote areas through a users' one-time purchase of Starlink's self-installing equipment, including a dish receiver to fit on a user's roof.

In early January, the FCC approved the launch of an additional 10 satellites to travel into polar orbit, covering Alaskan communities along the Arctic Circle for the first time ever. Those satellites took off on Jan. 24.


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