Starlink ends its unlimited satellite Internet data policy as download speeds keep dropping

From December 2022, Starlink satellite internet subscribers who use more than 1TB of data per month will see their speeds throttled during the hours of 7AM-11PM. Usage during the off-peak hours of 11PM-7AM at night is not counted towards the allocation, as a way to encourage customers to shift their heavy downloads during the night.

Under Starlink’s new fair use policy that has been circulated to North American subscribers since Friday, most users will have the option to restore their priority access for 25 cents per gigabyte, or lose basic access forever. month

Elon Musk’s SpaceX is adding Starlink coverage to new countries and territories, steadily attracting new business customers as it gets the green light to provide satellite internet on mobile vehicles such as RVs, boats, yachts or cruise ships. These new customers are starting to affect Starlink’s internet download speeds, which fell 54% year-over-year in Q2, while average speeds in the US fell to around 60 Mbps.

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Before the big customer rush, Starlink had listed a 350 Mbps speed tier in the residential sector on its website, but now it is shown in the more expensive business options. Starlink says that standard customers can expect speeds of 20-100 Mbps on its fixed internet plans, while the actual expected number for business customers is double that to 40-220 Mbps.

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Some users suggest that maintaining two Starlink satellite internet subscriptions now would be cheaper than paying US$0.25 per gigabyte for the next 1TB priority access at full speed. The end of Starlink’s unlimited internet policy was commented on by Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin, who warned that 1TB of data per month would not be enough for the “scaling endgame” he proposed earlier in the year that could solve the Ethereum blockchain. crowd

Still, SpaceX says less than 10% of Starlink members use more than 1TB of data monthly, and only those will be affected by the new fair use policy data cap.

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