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Report Claims First UK Customers Receive Starlink Broadband UPDATE2

Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 (8:34 am) - Score 73,272
spacex_leo_starlink_vs_gso_broadband_satellite

A few weeks ago SpaceX’s new Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite broadband service, Starlink, began sending out beta invites to selected trial applicants in the United Kingdom and now there are unverified indications that the first customer connections may soon be going live. We also know how much it will cost UK users.

As it stands the satellite operator already has around 960 LEOs in orbit and their initial ambition is to deploy a total of 4,425 by 2024, which could potentially be followed by up to 12,000 at a later date (possibly late 2026). SpaceX now has enough LEOs to start a limited commercial service and a growing number of people in the USA and Canada have already joined their beta, but they now seem set to be joined by the UK.

NOTE: The low altitude of Starlink’s LEO constellation makes relatively fast latency times of c.20-40ms (milliseconds) viable.

The first UK customer invites for the “Better Than Nothing Beta” programme appear to have been distributed during mid-December 2020 and were then widely discussed on social media (Reddit). The invites, which have now been received by quite a few people (albeit only a fraction of those who expressed an early interest), largely echoed the language of those previously issued to those in the USA and Canada (here).

The message told participants to expect broadband speeds of 50-150Mbps and warned about the likelihood of there being brief periods of no connectivity (well.. it’s a beta). In terms of pricing, selected beta customers in the UK were informed that the hardware (dish, terminal, router etc.) would cost £439 (vs $499 in the USA), then £54 for shipping and £89 (vs $99 in the USA) for the monthly subscription.

According to a new article on the Tesmanian (via Reddit), which is a site that reports on and sells Tesla accessories, the first customer in the UK is now in the process of going live in rural Devon (England) at 50.8N (latitude). However, we have not been able to get any solid confirmation of this, so take that with a pinch of salt until more users surface.

At present SpaceX has not built any ground stations for their Starlink constellation in the UK itself, but during the summer of 2020 they did select three locations in France that would be used to serve almost all of the UK and Ireland, as well as a big chunk of Western Europe (i.e. Gravelines, Villenave-d’Orbon and Belin-Beliet). We assume that at least one of those sites must be ready and all 3 can cover South England, while Gravelines alone can reach up to mid-Scotland.

Sadly, we don’t know the process by which SpaceX selects people for their beta trial, but hopefully more of those who were invited a few weeks ago, and then subsequently placed an order, will soon start to receive their kit. Naturally, we’d love to hear from anybody in the UK who has been lucky enough to be accepted.

In terms of pricing, we hope that Starlink intends to offer a cheaper entry-level plan in the future as the current pricing is too high for mass adoption, although Satellite services have traditionally been quite expensive. Unlimited data is a tricky thing for such platforms to do without incurring a lot of costs.

UPDATE 3rd Jan 2021

SpaceX also appears to have a ground station at the popular Goonhilly Earth Station in Cornwall (hinted here).

UPDATE 11th January 2021

In an unsurprising development it’s now been confirmed that Ofcom has indeed formally granted permission (licence) for SpaceX to launch their new ultrafast Starlink satellite broadband service in the United Kingdom (i.e. supply dishes and receivers), which took place in November 2020 (this explains the above developments). Starlink has also set up a company in Berkshire to managed the distribution (here).

UPDATE 20th January 2021

The latest batch of Starlink’s has just launched via a SpaceX rocket and the company used that opportunity to confirm the expansion of their beta programme to the UK, which is the first time that they’ve officially confirmed it (even though, as above, the cat is already out of the bag). The relevant segment is pasted below.

Leave a Comment
99 Responses
  1. Avatar wirelesspacman says:

    Hi Mark

    Is the speed symmetric, do you know?

    Peter

    1. Avatar Geoff says:

      The speeds on YouTube indicate around 15-25Mbps upload

    2. Avatar Marcelo Pacheco says:

      Starlink speeds are highly assimetric, with downloads tests reaching as fast as 175Mbps, but uploads tests rarely exceeding 30 Mbps.

    3. Avatar André says:

      No more asymmetric than most domestic broadband connections, then…

    4. Avatar Shinde says:

      I can understand the need for this in remote areas. But is it really worth the cost and so much junk in space?
      As far as most of the consumers living on mainland its not worth unless they are crazy.

    5. Avatar Anna says:

      Shinde well they aren’t in space.. Space is further up than that 😉

    6. Avatar Darren says:

      It’s better to compare in terms of speed “presently” on par with a 80/20 VDSL line with double the latency as a good ballpark comparison if you do have to compare to a landline..
      -I would not though but seems allot of folks do compare in said manner.

      -I would however compare more to the current satcom generation being in a higher orbit.

      Hope this helps 🙂

  2. Avatar The Facts says:

    £493 + £89/month.

  3. Avatar William Wilkinson says:

    I’ve applied to Starlink only recently but unfortunately I’ve not heard back. I’d compare myself to a child in classroom thrusting his arm into the air as high as he can, trying desperately to get the teacher to pick him to answer a question. I’m desperate for better broadband and I’m hoping Starlink could be my salvation this year.

    1. Avatar Sam says:

      Pick Me… Pick Me… OOO… OOO… I’m Special… Pick Me!
      I know the feeling…

      Interesting though… Are you not able to get anything from OR? IE ADSL / FTTC?
      No Altnets?

    2. Avatar James Hughes says:

      Have you tried Airband?

    3. Avatar William Wilkinson says:

      I’m 3.3 km from the green cabinet. I get 13 mbps max down my telephone line. I got quoted £6700 per household for 27 houses with BT community partnership. I have an ee 4g router with speeds which can vary wildly between 10 mbps – 40 mbps, usually averaging about 24. I like to play battle royale games on PC but my broadband frustrates the hell out of me. I’ve not heard of Airband but I’ll look it up now.

    4. Avatar David says:

      Same boat, we are on an Exchange Only (EO) which means we can’t get fibre. Our 18Mbps copper service seldom delivers more than 8MB, often much less. I’ve subscribed to a 4G backup service but it’s equally dire, roll on Starlink or OneWeb or 5G or anything, I’m already paying £50 per month for not very much at all.

    5. Avatar Martgadget says:

      @David: we are also on exchange only line, BT migrated our street to a new cabinet in the garden of the exchange, so it’s possible, you might want to pester BT on that as they have done it other places.

    6. Avatar Darren says:

      Have you retied of late, I’m in Northampton and have been selected.. Not sure if it’s location, random selection but I tried a number of addresses around the area here too and all seemed okay to be selected.

  4. Avatar Barry Little says:

    Having worked in Satellite industry for 15 years I have always found Satellite broadband very lagging in connection terms, a prime example of this is twoway broadband,it is a food option if you live rural in the UK but as far as inner city is concerned I think you will struggle to compete with traditional isp’s also alot of equipment such as sky tv skyq ect does not work with Satellite broadband because of the lagging effect. I hold my breath on this one and see what develops

    1. Avatar Doug says:

      “The low altitude of Starlink’s LEO constellation makes relatively fast latency times of c.20-40ms (milliseconds) viable.”

    2. Avatar André says:

      These are Low Earth Orbit satellites, not geosynchronous ones.
      Latency is likely to be less than fibre (I suspect this will be a major selling point for financial services connections).
      Once the whole constellation is deployed, Starlink has the ability to give current incumbents a hell of a competition.

    3. Avatar Buggerlugz says:

      Until then, it’ll be crap though……

    4. Avatar alex says:

      Andre – how is latency going to be less than fibre ?

    5. Avatar André says:

      The speed of light in a glass medium is significantly less than that in a vacuum.
      Also, photons do not travel in a straight line down a fibre strand, they bounce along, so the distance travelled is longer than the length of the fibre line.

    6. Avatar André says:

      @Buggerlugz
      It’s hard to say. I suppose that’s the point of the beta.
      I would imagine that it won’t “be crap”, it’ll more likely be grossly inconsistent to begin with (as satellites alternate between being visible and not not visible).

    7. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      “Latency is likely to be less than fibre”

      If by fibre you mean FTTP then I guess it depends on the ISP and network, since the best FTTP providers with a point to point setup can often get sub-2-3ms latency times. But some others may hover around 10ms, although these times are fairly stable and don’t change too much (excluding remote internet servers that will vary from service to service).

      I can’t see their current LEOs getting close to 2-3ms or less, the overall network setup, routing/peering and digital signal processing is a lot more complicated than just a bounce from earth to space and back. Would love to be proven wrong, but I think what Starlink can deliver now is more realistic and that’s fine. Can’t moan about anything around 20ms from a satellite service (SpaceX’s original target in 2017 being 25ms).

    8. Avatar NeilM says:

      Andre – The speed of light is faster in a vacuum, it is slower in fiber. The refractive index in fiber is higher.

      https://www.wired.com/2013/03/internet-at-the-speed-of-light/#:~:text=The%20standard%20line%20is%20that,it%20does%20through%20a%20vacuum.

      That is why financial trading systems would be interested in inter satellite laser communication, if you were doing London to Singapore for example. Assuming that the routing on the Starlink satellites was efficient, you would get a lower latency communication, and financial trading systems is all about latency, not so much the amount of data. So you could in principal end up with companies paying more to route their traffic this way.

      Most users, would hit the nearest satellite, and then be bounced down to the current in range ground station.

    9. Avatar John says:

      13ms from Edinburgh to London on OpenReach FTTP.
      17ms from Inverness.
      Below 5ms latency for OpenReach FTTP within Lodon itself.

      Starlink won’t beat ANY of those figures.

      The latency to the base station isn’t the end of the link.

      I don’t count only my latency to the OLT in the exchange.

    10. Avatar André says:

      @NeilM yes, that is what my post was saying.

      @Mark the refractive index of glass anywhere between 1.40 and 1.70
      That means light travels at, roughly speaking, half to a third of the speed of light in a vacuum. And it’s bouncing along in a fibre strand, not travelling in a straight line. For a long distance link that is very much non trivial, a d even with the added processing that you assume will be required this may be significant over, say, intercontinental links.
      I agree, probably not relevant from Croydon to London, though 🙂

    11. Avatar Liar Liar says:

      er, you all do realise you’ve got to get it up there (uplink) and then get it back down again (downlink). So sat to sat might be lower latency, but there’s no way it’s going to have less latency than a fibre optic cable.

      Both the uplink and downlink have to pass through the atmosphere. This slows it down. You won’t see starlink with 2 or 3ms latency. Go ask the users on reddit what they get.

    12. Avatar André says:

      @Liar liar – Yes. The refractive index of the atmosphere is just above 1 so the speed of light is pretty close to that of in a vacuum.
      The altitude of Starlink satellites is only about 500Km (compared to 35000Km(ish) for geostationary ones). Transit up and down to them (I’m ignoring processing time) is about 1.5 msec (so about 3msec return)
      I think people are looking as Starlink as just any other satellite system and forget that LEO constellations are a whole different beast.
      As I said, if you’re comparing to a short hop overground then it’s unlikely to be better, but for long transcontinental links it may well be significantly faster. Theoretically, of course 🙂

    13. Avatar Dr. Les Gornall says:

      In rural northern Ireland I have a broadband that dips to 1.2 Mbps for about half the working day and rises to 3.6 Mbps if the kids in the lane are not playing online games and the local TV channels are unpopular at the time. Latency is 90ms so I cannot get from my BT/Talk-Talk a connection to the office server. The expectation of 50-150 Mbps with half the current latency (or better) is simply mind blowing and will transform this location and perhaps double the value of the property I live in. Connectivity is more important than almost every other service these days. Working from home after the lockdown is the goal. The letter I have just received from BT saying I can have fibre broadband but it will cost >£20,000 is an improvement on the offer from my immediate neigbour of £100,000, but no thank you, I will not be using steam boilers, wires and fibres in future. I will be first in line for starlink and have signed up. Patiently waiting..

  5. Avatar NE555 says:

    “In terms of pricing, we hope that Starlink intends to offer a cheaper entry-level plan in the future as the current pricing is too high for mass adoption”

    I think they are intentionally pricing to *avoid* mass adoption, as some back-of-the-envelope calculations suggest:
    – average Internet usage 2.5Mbps per user in peak hours
    – say a satellite can handle 25Gbps of traffic, that’s 10,000 users
    – say 3 satellites are reliably over the UK at any one time
    – then they won’t want to sell more than 30,000 connections in the UK (=0.1%)

    Over time they may add more capacity, but at the same time average Internet usage is going up by ~30% per year as well. Also they will need to keep capacity available to sell to businesses and fleets.

    It looks like they’ve priced this right to manage demand: below leased lines, well above any ground-based service like 4G/5G, and affordable to the most affluent consumers who really need it. Their competition is geo-stationary satellites, and they can compete on speed and latency rather than price.

    In any case, plenty of people are happy to pay £60/month for FTTP 900/110 where it’s available; why not £90/month for 100M in the middle of nowhere?

    1. Avatar Anna says:

      Agreed. I pay £259 a month for 100/100 and that’s via a leased line over 3 year term

    2. Avatar Tony says:

      Hopefully that will change – certainly now that companies like toob are offering 900mbps symettric for 25 quid a month. Pay attention virgin media.

      Starlink does hold this romantic appeal that I can WFH from a yatch in the Med – it’d be worth paying £89/month for that, though no-one has really answered whether that requires a gimbled dish or whether future beamforming transponders will do that for you.

    3. Avatar NeilM says:

      Tony – So you will need a gimbal to keep the dish point in a steady direction (what ever direction that is currently for beta testers), lets say North. So when you turn the boat around the dish is continuely pointing the north. That is assuming that you want a connection constantly.

      The actual tracking of the satellite in the sky is performed via the phased array dish (since the satellite is LEO it is moving across the sky).

  6. Avatar mike says:

    Wait, you have to pay hundreds of pounds to be a beta tester?

    1. Avatar Marek says:

      Yea, it is also around 400 or 500 $ also in USA just for starter kit, monthly fees are around 90-100 $. Another this, this is “better then nothing beta” so you may be disconnected for minutes or hours whole day, there isn’t any guarantee of service :).

    2. Avatar JItteryPinger says:

      Hmmm, I’m not really in support of paying to test a service, I’m happy to test and support the the company in testing it with feedback and diagnostics and then return the kit.

      I guess that’s why there’s not really any Youtubers covering this on their channels.

    3. Avatar s says:

      I’m pretty sure part of what they’ll be testing is the pricing model (e.g. by gauging the reaction to the invites). Prices are lower than tooway, a little higher than SES, but the service should be hugely better than either. It doesn’t seem like a bad sort of monthly amount to start with to me. Yes it’s expensive but it seems fair considering what’s involved..

    4. Avatar JItteryPinger says:

      I agree the costs are suitable for what its purpose is.

      Just as a tester, isn’t something that should be of the essence.

    5. Avatar NeilM says:

      On youtube there are number of people in the USA and Canada who are covering this. Some have taken the dish apart (Actually looks like a dish, but in reality is actually a large circuit board)

      To a lesser or greater extent of quality the following youtube channels. If Starlink is something that interests you or is something you will look to buy, then have a look at these channels. Ideally start at the end and work forward in time.

      Adventures with Kramer US
      https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3id_6F_SVbPgtLL7hOd4bg

      MikeOnSpace Canada
      https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-M_5d0nlD2mO0qhN_J9XIg

      If you want to know what a phased array dish is like, then this will give you idea and why it’s initial pricing and power usage is what it is. Don’t think GEO satellite dish, because it isn’t.

      https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2020/12/teardown-of-dishy-mcflatface-the-spacex-starlink-user-terminal/

    6. Avatar Buggerlugz says:

      You could always go out and buy Cyberpunk instead if you wanted! 🙂

    7. Avatar Marcelo Pacheco says:

      There are millions of people in the world who’s only choice is slow and expensive satellite internet, crappy mobile internet or expensive and slow radio internet, at a higher price than Starlink.
      For many of those even a slightly intermittent starlink is a god sent.
      Reports demonstrate the quality of service is continuously improving and that there are thousands of customers that are very happy to pay to participate in the beta as without Starlink they can barely upload a video to youtube, do video conferencing, …
      If you can’t even download at 10Mbps or have a per GB pricing that generates a US$ 500 / month bill anytime you use netflix a lot, you will pray to get in the beta.
      If you do have Internet with at least 20 down / 5 up at a sane price, you probably don’t want to be in the beta.
      Starlink isn’t meant to provide broadband in London, Paris or NYC.

  7. Avatar Randy says:

    I signed up, but have not heard anything.
    I just want to mess with it and see what it does.
    Bit pricey for the kit tho. I’d imagine most people who signed up won’t go thru with it, just like how Tesla made a mint on non-refundable deposits of $100 for cars people didn’t go thru with in the end.

    1. Avatar Anna says:

      Yes but if someone is going to spend $90,000 on a car what’s $100?

    2. Avatar Karl J says:

      Tesla deposits have always been 100% refundable, and without any questions or delay on payment. I have made reservations for every new Tesla vehicle when announced and then reclaim the ones I don’t use.

    3. Avatar John says:

      “Tesla deposits have always been 100% refundable, and without any questions or delay on payment.”

      It used to be like that.
      No longer the case.

      They now charge a non-refundable order fee of $100 in the US.

      https://www.cnbc.com/amp/2019/10/17/tesla-adds-100-non-refundable-order-fee.html

      And £100 in the UK

      https://teslamotorsclub.com/tmc/threads/100-order-fee-is-a-fee-and-not-a-deposit.175235/

      Although there seems to be more success getting fee refunds in the UK.

  8. Avatar Alex says:

    I received my beta invite here in the UK (applying from Cornwall) about a week ago from Starlink, but as much as I’d like to accept the offer, and I really would, since the fixed line service and mobile coverage are appalling here, I just can’t commit to that price 🙁

    1. Avatar Buggerlugz says:

      Bonkers pricing IMHO!

    2. Avatar Russell HUTSON says:

      Hi Alex

      Out of curiosity, how long ago did you subscribe?

    3. Avatar jeremy kemp says:

      I received my invite today, but I am very reluctant due to only paying £37 per month with consistent speeds of 25 Mbps download to 10mbps upload. My daughter is always complaining, but I do not have any problems being downstairs. Maybe I should just buy a booster package for the rest of the house.

      Jez

  9. Avatar Anna says:

    I’d love one for my motorhome – kicks the crap out of anything else mobile.

    1. Avatar Burble says:

      That’s my hope if the prices come down a bit. Spending a few months away from home and also moving between two properties, it would seem a good solution.

    2. Avatar JItteryPinger says:

      If the geo location locking isn’t stuck on it that is.

      Seems to be mixed results on test when others have tried moving it away from home.

    3. Avatar Burble says:

      One aspect of Starlink is it’s ability to be used on the move, I’m not interested in that, but it would seem that geolocation shouldn’t be an issue, or at least not in the future. Globally there is a sizable market for high speed internet in RV’s, and there are already RV systems, but like fixed satellites they do have limitations and cost issues.

  10. Avatar Paul McClean says:

    I registered on the first day, but haven’t been invited to join the beta trial.

    I’m in Northern Ireland (54.4 latitude) so maybe they don’t have coverage that far north yet?

    I’m currently using LTE from 3, and I get about 20Mbps fairly consistently although the latency is terrible. I agree the cost is high but I would happily pay it to get decent performance. It would still be less than I was paying when commuting for work.

    Mr Musk if you are reading, pick me

  11. Avatar Global Britain says:

    Someone should tell Elon that this is GLOBAL BRITAIN now!

    We have our own OneWeb which Boris played a blinder by buying, and being painted Red White and Blue is much better than any overseas Mickey Mouse rubbish!

    We don’t need Elon’s so-called ‘star-links’!!

    SUPPORT ENGLAND!! BUY BRITISH!!

    1. Avatar dave says:

      Competition is a good thing and people are free to choose.

      I half expected you to start muttering about muslamic ray guns!

    2. Avatar JItteryPinger says:

      Britain first always

    3. Avatar ChinaNumberOne says:

      What are you smoking dude?

    4. Avatar Buggerlugz says:

      You know Oneweb will just look at Elon’s and say £1 cheaper a month, don’t you? Whatever price Starlink is, oneweb will be “just as” competitive as needed.

      So yeah, it’ll be ludicrously overpriced.

    5. Avatar Mark says:

      “SUPPORT ENGLAND!! BUY BRITISH!!”

      What about the rest of the countries that make up the British Isles, do they not deserve support as well?

    6. Avatar JItteryPinger says:

      What about them….

    7. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      @Buggerlugz,

      I’m not sure they’d have the capacity to compete on speeds and service with so few LEOs, but in any case, OneWeb’s setup appears to be designed for the ‘community’ distribution approach.

      Often this means supplying a central hub with X capacity and then the service itself gets distributed out to homes via a Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) platform. We’ll have to see, but higher contention may be the price you pay for greater affordability (this may be true for SpaceX too, but to a lesser extent).

      However, it’s early days yet and both platforms will need a couple of years to bed-in, before we can really see how they cope under proper use.

    8. Avatar Martin Winlow says:

      Oh, dear! Oh that it were that easy. The reality is that we not only *should* all be working together (as much as reasonably possible) but that we *must* to avoid any more stupid global conflicts. It has to be in all our interests to not want to repeat the colossally damaging mistakes of the past and being all jingoistically nationalistic isn’t going to help.

      Personally, I think it’s completely nuts that we are going to do our own (almost) LEO BB system when we could use Starlink or the EU’s system (yep, they’re doing one, too) at a small fraction of the cost. I predict it will all come to nought but our staggeringly huge COVID-debt burden will be even bigger by the end of it.

    9. Avatar Little Britain says:

      Did the ability to detect sarcasm disappear with the start of the new year?

    10. Avatar Mark says:

      @JitteryPinger

      I’m assuming your replying to me and probably trying to troll me but I’ll bite.

      England is not Britain and Britain is not England. Its an oxymoron to suggest otherwise.

  12. Avatar Martin Winlow says:

    To those of you in the UK with poor broadband: It sounds like none of you have heard of the governments voucher scheme (Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme – https://www.gov.uk/government/news/big-broadband-boost-for-rural-english-shires-and-counties) for improving poor or no broadband situations. It is quite generous and would, in the case of a small community for example, allow a number of applications to club together to bring decent broadband to wherever you are.

    1. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      It’s a good scheme, but when we’re talking about remote rural areas then the current vouchers often won’t cover all of the costs involved, hence why they’re not a magic fix for every community.

    2. Avatar Lollipop says:

      “Unfortunately this postcode is not eligible for a Gigabit Broadband Voucher. “.

      Next.

    3. Avatar infuriatingpixels says:

      Sadly the voucher doesn’t apply if you have even a sniff of 4G, I asked 🙁

  13. Avatar Martin Winlow says:

    One point I thought worth mentioning in terms of the relatively high cost of Starlink’s system… There is, of course, absolutely no reason why more than one household could not share a connection (given the potentially huge data speeds on offer) and therefore the cost. Even if it were just 2 houses sharing one link, the cost to each household then would be on a par with most mainstream alternative UK BB services.

    Setting up a wireless link to connect the LANs of 2 adjacent properties is a very easy, cheap and quick job these days. Heck, if you were next door to each other you could just string a line of CAT5 between them – it doesn’t get much cheaper than that!

    1. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      ISPs generally frown on service sharing between other houses (check the terms first), while whoever pays the bills would also be the first target if somebody outside your home does something illegal on that same connection. But this is really similar to if an ISP just offers a cheaper package to consumers, albeit with a higher contention on the capacity.

  14. Avatar Ilon Mask says:

    BT should start woried

  15. Avatar Alec says:

    With a BT business line on 1.5Mb ADSL with the smallest call package costing us £75(ish) per month, I would happily throw an extra £14 a month at StarLink as it is our ONLY viable option at the moment and for the foreseeable future.

    The setup costs are a little steep, however this isn’t your typical off the shelf router that gets rebranded, so I think it justified and reasonable. I’m also in Rural Devon so am quite excited to hear that Starlink are offering Betas in our area. I’ll be throwing my money at it the day it’s available and keeping our 4G 4Mb connection as a backup.

  16. Avatar Optimist says:

    This could also be another welcome nail in the coffin of ISP business rates being levied according to properties potentially served, as that would mean just about everyone in the UK.

  17. Avatar Name says:

    Hold on, beta testers are paying for being beta testers?

    1. Avatar Buggerlugz says:

      Crazy isn’t it! Just bonkers. You’d think Elon would have enough confidence in his product he’d be handing them out to testers with incentives….guess not when they’re queueing up pay him to test his product.

    2. Avatar NeilM says:

      Without a doubt some of the users in the beta are taking a gamble and it’s not at this time a service you would use is you wanted smooth zoom meetings.

      However assuming it works, they have a connection in a geographic location, and at somepoint their will be caps on the number of users in a geographic location (Whatever that is defined to be, though the sq area covered by a satellite at a height at 540km is . Since geography is the only way to limit the contention ratio.

      For some it’s a no brainer, they pay more for a lesser service already, and at the moment it’s pricing structure is all about taking away customers from Viasat and Hughes. Lowest hanging fruit and all that.

      This website gives you a pretty good idea of coverage. Use the options to switch on mercator projection.

      https://satellitemap.space/#

  18. Avatar Pezza says:

    Not bad speeds but pricey. I also dislike the idea of them adding thousands of satellites to the junk man has already put into orbit, still it will be an invaluable service for some.

    1. Avatar Chris says:

      Don’t worry about space junk, the orbit they are in guarantee the units will fall back to earth in a few years burning up in the process.

    2. Avatar Pezza says:

      Right and that’s a guarantee is it? In the meantime there are thousands of extra satellites up there along with all the other crap man has put into orbit.. those pictures of space junk don’t look pretty..

    3. Avatar Yes says:

      Yes, that’s a physics backed guarantee. At their very low operational altitude the satellites are constantly experiencing a tiny amount of atmospheric drag and must use their Krypton Hall thrusters to stay in orbit. If a Starlink satellite loses propulsion entirely (which is unlikely) it will naturally deorbit within 5 years. If the thrusters are operational, but the satellite is otherwise not functional they can deorbit themselves within weeks. Several Starlink satellites have deorbited already and nothing was left behind and nothing made it to the ground (they’re much too small).

    4. Avatar André says:

      There’s an awful lot of empty space up there 😉

  19. Avatar Mervyn Stanfield says:

    A Rip off

  20. Avatar Micky says:

    I fried an egg today!

  21. Avatar Mark Dayer says:

    Got my dish on the roof today. 120 down. 20 up. 30ms ping.

    1. Avatar Phil says:

      That’s really good, I’m waiting on my kit, out of curiosity where in the UK are you and when did you place your order?

    2. Avatar Simon T says:

      Where in the UK are you Mark, and is has it been performing as well as that consistently?

  22. Avatar Grumpy Dave says:

    I’ve just been offered a “better than nothing” beta in Swindon, will not go it though, purely down to the monthly cost. I can get decent ~65mb down through Plusnet, which coincidentally I have renewed for another year just last week. All in this costs £26 a month. As much as the geek in me would love to, I cannot justify that much extra cost for starlink.

  23. Avatar Sid Smith says:

    Just had the email for beta to get the kit for £89 but no ref to monthly cost or contract lengths. If £80+ a month I’ll stick with BT at 50mb + ave.
    I thought the Beta program was to be testers for the kit v locations from what I read before.
    Was tempted to order but held off.
    Was the option was to use in other locations where no mobile speed but says it’s got to be in a cell.

  24. Avatar Phil says:

    My kit is on its way, I’ve struggled with connectivity for a long time now and to have some kind of usable solution I have 3 FTTC connections giving 5mb down if I’m lucky. But being so far from the exchange real world performance is hit and miss but regular Sat broadband isn’t really an option, high latency and data caps make it unviable.

    Mobile data can get me 10mb sometimes and next to nothing at other times, so isn’t a viable solution either, even with big aerials etc as it’s the mast that’s the limiting factor.

    I’ve looked at FFTP with grants but looking at about £40k install then £450 a month for 100mb.

    Having tried all sorts of ways to get a connection, even having gone to the lengths of kitting out a van as a mobile office so I can work from somewhere with a decent signal during the pandemic, I’m really hoping Starling may be the answer for me here.

    1. Avatar Simon T says:

      Hi Phil, Was Starlink the answer here? Really intrigued to find out as I’m contemplating getting on board. We’re just about to move to Dartmoor and I’ve heard that the BT service there is really patchy!

  25. Avatar Doug says:

    I live about 7Km from an exchange. I’ve never been promised fiber. Always “We are working on it”. Ap resent I am circa 2MbDown .03Up and 40Ms+ Latency. Anything is better than the shambles I have had to deal with over the past few years.

    1. Avatar Doug says:

      At present not “Ap resent”

  26. Avatar Nathan says:

    I live 2km away from a fibre exchange, but CuTTP (north of Dundee) and rarely get more than 6Mbps down and 1Mbps up. FTTP is scheduled now for 2023 and working from home at the moment is really quite difficult. I can’t wait for my Starlink kit to arrive.

  27. Avatar Simon says:

    I have FTTC and have seen speeds drop by 25% in the last year. Just get push back from my ISP with the ISP\Ofcom\BT stitch up know as MGALS. How it’s of any benefit to a consumer is beyond me.
    My only route to better speeds is FTTP (one demand) had a survey and it will cost £11,000 to do the cable work then tied into a 330MB deal for a year costing £120 a month. This is another total joke in that as an individual I’m charged VAT on everything as if I were a business, but can’t access any vouchers to help towards to the costs as I’m not a business.

    So if Starlink can do 300MB then I’ll take it as its cheap compared with other options

  28. Avatar Simon T says:

    How is this working out for people in the UK? Quite interested in having a go if it seems to work OK? Have there been many periods of downtime yet?

    1. Avatar Rich says:

      I place my order for Starlink on the 9th April knowing it won’t be lauched till summer according to their website. I had email within 3 days asking me to join the beta program which meant I had to pay the full balance. The order form said it could take 3 weeks to arrive. Within 3 days of payement I had email saying here’s the DHL tracking number and Iteam arrived on 16th April.

      Thoughts ? yes its expensive but wow the speeds are good. Highest Ive seen is 330 meg and normally it pulls about 250meg. So far so impressed and this is with the dishy only sitting in the garden and not on the roof.

      Hope my review helps. 🙂

  29. Avatar Rowley says:

    Rich (April 22) – Whats the first part of your UK postcode? Thanks.

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