SpaceX has begun to selectively offer a new terminal for its Starlink low earth orbit (LEO) satellite service. The terminal is designed for easy installation by customers.
The terminal has what the company calls a “quickstand” that customers can use to position the terminal in the best location for satellite reception. The quickstand is based on the same concept used to enable photo frames to be self-standing. Customers will use the quickstand, in combination with a smartphone app, to find the correct position.
The terminal measures about 15 inches wide by 23 ½ inches high by 1 ½ inches deep at its deepest point.
As of now, though, the new terminal is only offered to by invitation to a small group of customers. Additional information about it can be found at this link.
News of the new terminal came the same week that the New York Post reported that SpaceX is planning to sell shares in the company next month. According to the Post, that move means that the company is not planning to do an initial public offering (IPO) any time soon.
Rumors that the company was planning an IPO came earlier this month, shortly after Elon Musk, who heads up SpaceX shared a post on social media platform X stating that he was “excited to announce that Starlink has achieved breakeven cash flow.”
Project Kuiper Co-opetition
Perhaps SpaceX’s toughest competition will be Project Kuiper, another LEO satellite offering planned by Amazon. Starlink has a considerable head start on Project Kuiper.
Amazon completed what it called the first Project Kuiper “protoflight” just this month, while SpaceX already has many satellites launched and has been selling service for several years.
Nevertheless, some industry observers believe the Amazon ownership will give Project Kuiper an advantage.
As SpaceX Starlink gets set to compete with Amazon Project Kuiper, the two companies also have been cooperating on at least one key issues. Recently the two companies sent a jointly signed letter to FCC Chair Jessica Rosenworcel urging the commission to support a future agenda item at the upcoming World Radio Conference. SpaceX and Amazon said the item would promote LEO satellite innovation and progress.