Featured Image: Starlink
Images and code found within SpaceX’s site suggest a beta test for the satellite-based internet service could be on the way. The company has been placing hundreds of its Starlink satellites into low-Earth orbit over the past few years with aim of offering worldwide internet coverage in the future.
The Starlink page mentions offering service to the northern US and Canada this year, with more areas to follow in 2021, so a pending beta program would make sense.
Users on Reddit turned up a series of photos that appear to depict SpaceX’s take on satellite dishes, which users will need to install in order to send and receive signals from the network. After the photos popped up on Twitter, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk seemed to verify their authenticity — while also providing more details on how the program would work.
The hardware will reportedly be provided for free to beta testers and, as Musk states, you won’t need pro installation to get it up and running. In fact, some of the wording suggests the company wants to see how easy it is for users to install the hardware on their own, which could inform how they go about rolling the service out for large-scale use.
You’ll need a clear view of the Northern sky to receive a signal and details found on the company’s site suggest they might initially focus testing on those who live in “Northern United States and lower Canada, with those living in rural and/or remote communities in the Washington state area.”
We’ll continue to keep an eye on Starlink’s approach to internet service as the system evolves.