Founded by Elon Musk, the founder of Tesla and SpaceX, the Starlink system is a satellite internet constellation that currently provides internet access to 36 countries. According to Elon Musk, Starlink is targeting global coverage and is ideal for providing internet services to rural areas.
The Starlink constellation are a series of satellites that in low Earth orbit to provide low latency internet connectivity to all its customers.
Also Read: What Eutelsat and OneWeb merger means for India
Starlink was first conceived in early 2014, which was followed by a public announcement in 2015. The brand was trademarked in 2017 by SpaceX, the same year that the company began to look for license from the Federal Communications Commission. It received its license in 2018. The company did not launch until 2019 as the company had not yet figured out how to make the user terminals affordable for everyday customers as the service was intended to target rural users.
The company launched its first payload of 60 Starlink satellites on November 11, 2019 from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Since then, as of July 2022, there are close to 2,900 small satellites in LEO catering to its 400,000 subscribers.
According to the Starlink website, the constellation of LEO satellites has made it possible for virtual doctor visits and remote learning opportunities to be availed by various regions in the Midwest United States as well as the more rural regions of Canada, like the First Nation homes and schools in rural Ontario and Manitoba as well as remote schools in Sotomó and Calete Sierra, Chile.
Also Read: Eutelsat and OneWeb to merge, want to rival SpaceX in satellite internet
In India, Starlink had announced pre-orders in October 2021, roping in Sanjay Bhargava an executive who had worked with Musk on creating PayPal. The internet service sold 5000 pre-orders before the Indian government shut down the service saying that they had not gained regulatory approval from it to operate in the country.