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SpaceX Starlink to go south for first time with planned deployment in Texas

Starlink logo imposed on stylized image of the Earth.

Enlarge / Starlink logo imposed on stylized image of the Earth. (credit: Starlink)

SpaceX has agreed to provide Internet service to 45 families in a Texas school district in early 2021 and to an additional 90 families later on, the school district announced last week. The announcement by Ector County Independent School District (ECISD) in Odessa said it will be the “first school district to utilize SpaceX satellites to provide Internet for students.”

“The project will initially provide free Internet service to 45 families in the Pleasant Farms area of south Ector County,” the district said. “As the network capabilities continue to grow, it will expand to serve an additional 90 Ector County families.”

The Texas location is notable because the ongoing, limited Starlink beta exists only in the Northern US, and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has said an upcoming public beta will only be for the Northern US and “hopefully” Southern Canada. SpaceX has over 700 Starlink satellites in orbit and will be able to expand the service area as it deploys more of the nearly 12,000 it has been authorized to launch. In Washington state, Starlink has been deployed to rural homes, a remote tribe, and emergency responders and families in wildfire-stricken areas.

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Starlink’s first Southern deployment focuses on students who lack home Internet.Read More

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