Starlink Explained: Here’s how Elon Musk’s Satellite Internet Service can deliver high-speed broadband to rural India
After his meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New York, Elon Musk said that he wanted to bring Starlink to India. What is Starlink internet and how can it benefit rural India and remote locations in the country? Details here.
गाँव कनेक्शन 21 Jun 2023 1:12 PM GMT
Upon his arrival in New York for the first leg of his state visit to the United States of America, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi met with business and thought leaders like Tesla CEO Elon Musk, Nobel Prize winner Paul Romer and astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson.
When Tesla and Twitter owner Elon Musk met Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Musk expressed his immense enthusiasm for the future of India. Musk said that he and PM Modi had spoken about a bunch of things including the former’s plans of bringing Starlink internet to India.
“The Starlink internet which I think can be incredibly helpful for remote and rural villages in India,” said Tesla’s CEO.
What is Starlink internet and how can it help rural India? We’ve got all the details.
What Is Starlink?
Starlink is a satellite internet constellation operated by American aerospace company SpaceX which is founded by Elon Musk. It is a venture from Musk that aims to sell internet connections to almost anyone on the planet through a growing network of private satellites orbiting overhead.
Starlink boasts over 4,200 functional satellites orbiting overhead. It provides satellite internet access coverage to over 56 countries. It also aims to provide high-speed, low-latency internet access to users around the world, especially in remote areas. Within each coverage area, orders are fulfilled on a first-come, first-served basis.
Starlink is designed to overcome the limitations of traditional internet infrastructure by utilising a vast network of small satellites in low Earth orbit (LEO). It also aims for global mobile phone service after 2023.
The Starlink constellation approximately consists of thousands of small satellites each weighing (260) kilograms. These satellites are deployed in a relatively low orbit around 550 kilometres above the Earth’s surface.
In total, nearly 12,000 satellites are planned to be deployed, with a possible later extension to 42,000. SpaceX announced reaching more than 1 million subscribers in December 2022 and 1.5 million subscribers in May 2023.
Starlink not only leads the industry in innovations to reduce satellite brightness, but also on-orbit debris mitigation, meeting or exceeding all regulatory and industry standards.
How Will Starlink Internet Help India
With more than 1.3 billion people, India faces the challenge of connecting remote and rural regions, where traditional internet infrastructure deployment is challenging and costly. Starlink comes with the potential to transform India’s digital infrastructure. The constellation of thousands of LEO satellites aims to provide reliable, low-latency internet connectivity to the remote or rural parts of the country.
As per reports, Starlink is particularly beneficial to areas that have limited or no access transitional internet infrastructure. Starlink will take the internet to remote regions, rural communities which often face challenges in establishing reliable internet connections. It will certainly change the face of rural India as it could take the internet to villages and other remote parts of India.
The advent of Starlink in India is expected to have a profound impact across various sectors. It can help bridge the digital gap in the country, enhance connectivity for small and medium enterprises and encourage digital education.
It also aims to enhance resilience and redundancy in internet connectivity as the traditional and terrestrial infrastructure of internet connectivity is susceptible to natural disasters and damages. By diversifying the internet access through a satellite based network Starlink offers as an alternative option and ensures connectivity for the rural parts of India.
All you need to do to connect is set up a small satellite dish at your home to receive the signal and pass the bandwidth on to your router. The company offers several mounting options for rooftops, yards and the exterior of your home. There's even a Starlink app for Android and iOS that uses augmented reality to help customers pick the best location and position for their receivers.