Starlink user base doubles to 2 million in just 9 months
Elon Musk’s SpaceX-owned internet venture, Starlink, has achieved a significant milestone, surpassing 2 million active users in over 60 countries across all seven continents. What’s so remarkable about this achievement is that, in just four months, Starlink grew from 500,000 users to over 2 million active Starlink subscribers.
In a recent announcement shared on X, Starlink stated, “Starlink is available on all 7 continents, in over 60 countries and many more markets, connecting 2M+ active customers and counting with high-speed internet!”
The development of Starlink dates back to 2014 when Elon Musk embarked on the ambitious journey to address the digital divide. He drew inspiration from his visits to remote regions where access to high-speed internet was virtually non-existent. Fast forward to May 2019, and the project achieved a significant milestone with the launch of its initial batch of 60 operational Starlink satellites.
As of September 25, 2023, the Starlink constellation has grown substantially, with more than 4,600 satellites orbiting the Earth, and its expansion continues unabated.
In 2020, Starlink made waves by announcing that its space-based internet offered speeds faster than those provided by 95 percent of all U.S. internet service providers. SpaceX introduced the initial Starlink service priced at $99 per month, offering data speeds ranging from 50Mb/s to 150Mb/s and latency between 20ms to 40ms. Notably, this monthly service fee excludes an upfront cost of $499 for the Starlink Kit.
SpaceX’s ambitious plans for the future involve deploying approximately 12,000 satellites across three orbital shells by the mid-2020s. Each of these satellites tips the scales at about 500 pounds (227 kilograms), marking them as the heaviest payloads ever launched aboard a Falcon 9 rocket.
In a recent update on X, Elon Musk revealed that SpaceX had launched a total of 61 Falcon rockets in the current year. He further added:
” “SpaceX has delivered ~80% of all Earth payload mass to orbit in 2023. China is ~10% & rest of world other ~10%.”
Great work by the @SpaceX team successfully launching 61 Falcon rocket missions this year!
If tomorrow’s mission goes well, we will exceed last year’s flight count.
SpaceX has delivered ~80% of all Earth payload mass to orbit in 2023. China is ~10% & rest of world other ~10%.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 2, 2023
The total cost of the decade-long project to design, build, and deploy such a network is estimated at nearly US$10 billion. In 2019 alone, Elon Musk’s SpaceX has raised over $1 billion this year as its internet satellite production ramps up, the company said in an SEC filing released earlier today. As a sign of investors’ interest in the direction of the company, SpaceX said it raised more funding than previously thought. SpaceX venture brought in $1.02 billion since the beginning of the year, more than SpaceX was seeking.