Starlink will soon offer an Internet connection to certain airlines, shipowners, and probably to individual vehicles eventually.
According to Gizmodo, SpaceX has just obtained authorization from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to offer its Starlink service to all vehicles in motion. This means that subscribers will be able to have Internet access on board their car, truck or motorhome, and even on board ships and planes.
“ By authorizing a new class of terminals for Space X’s satellites, we’re expanding the range of possibilities to meet the growing demands of consumers who now demand a roaming connection, whether driving an RV across the country, leading a cargo vessel from Europe to the United States, or aboard a domestic or international flight “Explains the agency in a press release.
For the moment, SpaceX has not yet announced any new terminals intended for this purpose. It is therefore necessary to be satisfied with terminals specially dedicated to motorhomes (see our article). An approach that is still far from ideal; the invoice is particularly salty, and the receiver in question is especially designed to be mounted on “American-style” vehicles, that is to say closer to a real coach than to your favorite caravan.
First public transport, then personal vehicles
Eventually, however, we can expect SpaceX to develop specialized hardware for standard cars. For obvious reasons, the Tesla will probably be the first cars to benefit from it. A Starlink terminal could even be integrated directly into the vehicle as an option. But it may be necessary to wait for the deployment of the second generation Starlink, which is much more efficient, for this eventuality to materialize.
However, this FCC decision will still have short-term consequences. Gizmodo recalls, for example, that SpaceX signed its first partnership with a major airline – Hawaiian Airlines – last April. Thanks to this authorization, the firm of Elon Musk can now move this collaboration to the concrete phase by providing an Internet connection on board these planes.
Other operators such as the airline Delta Airlines or the shipowner Royal Caribbean would also like to use the services of Starlink. Until your vehicle is entitled to its own dedicated Starlink connection, you will therefore already be able to take advantage of it during certain plane and boat trips.