More than 500,000 pre orders have been received by SpaceX, for its Starlink satellite internet service. Founder Elon Musk stated that there are no technical problems anticipated meeting the demand.
Responding to a post from a CNBC reporter that said the $99 deposits SpaceX took for the service were fully refundable and did not guarantee service, Musk tweeted that, only limitation is high density of users in urban areas. He also said that more of a challenge when they got into the several million user range.
A date is not yet set for Starlink’s service launch by SpaceX. As it had previously planned, commercial service would not likely be offered in 2020. There is a plan by the company to eventually deploy 12,000 satellites in total. The company also quoted that Starlink constellation will cost it roughly $10 billion.
Building and sending rockets to outer space is a capital-intensive business, but two of the world’s richest men, Amazon (AMZN.O) founder Jeff Bezos and Musk, who is also the chief of automaker Tesla Inc. (TSLA.O), have invested billions of dollars over the years to make inroads in this market. They have sparred publicly over the competing satellite plans.
SpaceX’s plan to deploy some Starlink satellites at a lower earth orbit than planned has been approved by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC). And also a number of conditions have been included to ensure the plan’s safety. SpaceX agreed to accept that their satellites may encounter interference from satellites deployed under Amazon’s Kuiper Systems satellite project.