One of the major barriers to entry to using SpaceX’s Starlink satellite-based ISP has been the cost of the terminal, which uses a phase-array antenna and which costs $499 (and reportedly costs Starlink more than $1300 to manufacture.)
Despite the initial setup cost Elon Musk’s SpaceX still managed to ship more than 100,000 dishes, but this number may soon be doubled, with President of SpaceX, Gwynne Shotwell telling a conference that the dishes they will start shipping later this year will “cost roughly half of what our current user terminals cost.”
She also promises a similar reduction further down the line, meaning the dish could cost as little as $125 in the future.
One fly in the ointment however is the current semiconductor shortage, with Shotwell admitting that “In fact, that’s what’s delayed some of the new user terminals that we’re spinning the design on.”
SpaceX currently has more than 1,740 satellites in orbit, and are aiming to launch around 30,000 satellites to allow them to improve the network.
Starlink has recently revealed that have a 500,000 waiting list to fill when the network has the needed capacity and coverage.