A couple of days ago, Elon Musk was asked when Starlink would come out of beta while reporting feedback of Tesla’s Full-Self Driving Beta 10. He replied, “next month.”
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 17, 2021
While this is good news, Musk tends to overshoot when it comes to timelines. According to The Verge, he claimed at the Mobile World Conference that the full version of Starlink would come out in August, and that Starlink would have “possibly over 500,000 users within 12 months.”
Starlink is made up of about 12,000 constellation satellite system in low Earth orbit. These satellites offer constant internet service. A terminal, which consists of a satellite dish and a Wi-Fi router, is worth $499 and the internet service is $99 a month. Since the release of their open beta testing in October, Musk claims to have sold over 100,000 terminals to 14 different countries. The company also aimed to have worldwide coverage in September. So far, Engadget writes that Starlink’s beta version has only been offered in North America, some parts of Europe, Australia, Chile, and New Zealand. Though, expansions are planned to be made in Mexico, Japan, the Philippines, and South Africa.
Their main goal is to provide internet service to rural areas around the globe with download speeds of up to 100Mbps and 20Mbps. Internet could also eventually reach developing countries.
As previously mentioned, Musk is not one for meeting deadlines. A recent example is the production and delivery date of Tesla’s Cybertruck. At first, buyers were promised to see production by the end of 2021. In early August, an insider for Tesla tweeted that the production will start in 2022. It was only then that designs were finalized and when beta testing would start.
We will have to see, but I would not bet money on Starlink making the October deadline. If they do, I will gladly eat my own words.