Musk Says Starlink Internet Speed Will Double this Year

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Susan Walsh/AP/Shutterstock (10636870a)Tesla and SpaceX Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk speaks at the SATELLITE Conference and Exhibition in Washington.
Susan Walsh/AP/Shutterstock / Susan Walsh/AP/Shutterstock

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said in a tweet today that Starlink satellite internet speed will double this year.

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“Speed will double to ~300Mb/s & latency will drop to ~20ms later this year,” Musk said in the tweet.

In response to a question on twitter about the active coverage map, Musk said that Starlink will reach “most of Earth by end of year, all by next year, then it’s about densifying coverage. Important to note that cellular will always have the advantage in dense urban areas. Satellites are best for low to medium population density areas,” he added.

Starlink is now delivering initial beta service both domestically and internationally and will continue expansion to near global coverage of the populated world in 2021, according to the company’s website. “During beta, users can expect to see data speeds vary from 50Mb/s to 150Mb/s and latency from 20ms to 40ms in most locations over the next several months as we enhance the Starlink system. There will also be brief periods of no connectivity at all. As we launch more satellites, install more ground stations and improve our networking software, data speed, latency and uptime will improve dramatically,” the company says.

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The company explains on its website that latency is the time it takes to send data from one point to the next. “When satellites are far from Earth, latency is high, resulting in poor performance for activities like video calls and online gaming. Starlink satellites are over 60 times closer to Earth than traditional satellites, resulting in lower latency and the ability to support services typically not possible with traditional satellite internet,” the company says.

The most recent Starlink launch was February 15, when SpaceX launched 60 Starlink satellites from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.

Just last week, SpaceX raised $850 million in private equity funding, according to CNBC. The latest round also represents a jump of about 60% in the company’s valuation from its previous round in August, when SpaceX raised nearly $2 billion at a $46 billion valuation, CNBC reported.

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About the Author

Yaël Bizouati-Kennedy is a full-time financial journalist and has written for several publications, including Dow Jones, The Financial Times Group, Bloomberg and Business Insider. She also worked as a vice president/senior content writer for major NYC-based financial companies, including New York Life and MSCI. Yaël is now freelancing and most recently, she co-authored  the book “Blockchain for Medical Research: Accelerating Trust in Healthcare,” with Dr. Sean Manion. (CRC Press, April 2020) She holds two master’s degrees, including one in Journalism from New York University and one in Russian Studies from Université Toulouse-Jean Jaurès, France.
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