Starlink to explore collaboration with Indian telcos for broadband internet services

SpaceX subsidiary Starlink is planning to explore collaboration with telecom companies in India to expand broadband internet services in the country with a focus on rural areas, a top company official said on Friday.  Starlink Country Director India Sanjay Bhargava told that discussions with broadband service providers will start once the 12 Phase-1 aspirational districts are identified by the Niti Aayog and the company will see the interest levels of the various players and the USOF (universal service obligation fund).

“I am hoping that we will get a time-bound 100 per cent broadband plan that can serve as a model for other districts but the devil is in the details and there may be many good reasons why one or more broadband providers do not want to collaborate, though to me that seems unlikely,” Bhargava said.

Starlink claims to have received over 5,000 pre-orders from India. The company is charging a deposit of $99 or Rs 7,350 per customer and claims to deliver data speeds in the range of 50-150 megabits per second in the beta stage.

Bhargava had earlier announced that the company will focus on 10 rural Lok Sabha constituencies to provide internet services for 80 per cent of the Starlink terminals shipped to India. “At Starlink, we can roll out fast if we have licensing approval and…the Starlink’s could move to other remote areas,” Bhargava said.  In a social media post, Bhargava said the company wants to collaborate with all. “We want to collaborate with all and have others besides us licensed to provide satellite broadband so that satellite plus terrestrial together can provide 100 per cent broadband, especially in rural districts,” he said.  There have been some reports of Starlink considering manufacturing of terminals to provide satellite broadband services in India, but Bhargava said the company is not actively thinking about making terminals for broadband locally.

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Tech billionaire Elon Musk has said on Twitter that his aerospace company SpaceX may soon launch satellite-based internet service Starlink in India. Musk responded to a Twitter post that the company is exploring how the regulatory approval process in the country will work for Starlink.  Musk said, “The regulatory approval process is being explored.”

Starlink recently shipped 100,000 terminals to customers. The objective of this project is to provide global broadband connectivity through a cluster of satellites. SpaceX began satellite launches in November 2019 and opened its $99 (Rs 7,223) per month beta program to select customers about a year later.

References:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/business/india-business/elon-musks-starlink-to-explore-collaboration-with-indian-telcos-for-broadband/articleshow/87541476.cms

starlink plans: Jio-Airtel Vacation! Musk’s internet service is about to be launched, beta users are paying this much for the month – Elon musk has stated on twitter that his satellite based internet service starlink soon in india soon

 

3 thoughts on “Starlink to explore collaboration with Indian telcos for broadband internet services

  1. For the Indian rural community use-case, it will be interesting whether the Starlink terminals will be used as a backhaul solution to/from a cell site. an anchor institution, or as a direct Internet-to-consumer type of broadband service.

  2. Nokia India on Nov 3rd claimed to have recorded a top speed of 9.85 Gigabit per second on Vodafone Idea network during the ongoing 5G trials. The company has achieved the top speed in back end data transmission, which means connecting mobile base stations network, during the trials in Gandhinagar, Gujarat.
    Read more at: https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/telecom/telecom-news/nokia-claims-top-5g-speed-of-9-85-gbps-on-vodafone-idea-network-during-trial/articleshow/87503143.cms

  3. Really good information. However, India has instructed the public not to pre-order Starlink, SpaceX’s satellite-based internet service, according to a report from Reuters.

    Starlink had been told to comply with regulations and refrain from “booking/rendering the satellite internet services in India with immediate effect.”

    Starlink registered its business in India on November 1st. It has begun advertising, and according to the government, it has started pre-selling its service.

    https://www.reuters.com/technology/india-tells-public-shun-musk-backed-starlink-until-it-gets-licence-2021-11-27/

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