Telecommunications

SpaceX signs its first deal for Starlink inflight Wi-Fi

SpaceX signs its first deal fo...
Indpendent airline carrier JSX will be the first to offer Starlink inflight Wi-Fi to customers
Indpendent airline carrier JSX will be the first to offer Starlink inflight Wi-Fi to customers
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Indpendent airline carrier JSX will be the first to offer Starlink inflight Wi-Fi to customers
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Indpendent airline carrier JSX will be the first to offer Starlink inflight Wi-Fi to customers

SpaceX has found a new home for its satellite-powered internet, inking a deal with independent air carrier JSX to offer onboard Wi-Fi to customers later this year. That makes the airline the first to carry SpaceX's Starlink internet service, as the private space company continues shoring up the technology by launching more satellites into orbit.

After launching the first set of satellites in 2019, SpaceX has been rapidly building out its constellation in an attempt to blanket the planet in high-speed internet. There are currently around 2,000 Starlink satellites in orbit and plans to deploy many thousands more, though the program isn't without its detractors decrying their contribution to pollution of the night sky.

In any case, SpaceX continues to push the service and even recently introduced a premium option for high-end users. It has also been working on ways to implement access on commercial aircraft, testing the service with several aircraft over the past year or so, including those from Delta Airlines, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal this week.

But JSX will be the first cab off the rank, and says the service will be free for every customer onboard when it launches later this year. The airline bills itself as a "hop-on jet service," functioning as a short-distance carrier offering 30-seat charter flights between US cities including Las Vegas, Phoenix and Oakland.

Source: JSX (Twitter)

3 comments
3 comments
windykites
One use for this service would be continuous flight data transmissions from passenger planes, to do away with 'black boxes'.
MattII
@windykites, I don't think you'd ever want to do away with black-boxes. It will, however, aid in finding aircraft over the ocean, so you likely won't end up with another MH370 disappearance.
Eddy
One dish downlink bandwidth shared by a planeload of passengers sounds like dial-up speeds unless Elon has a way to up the power for multi-users with one dish.