How much does Starlink cost? Elon Musk suggests he may pull internet from Ukraine


SpaceX, the company founded by Elon Musk, has suggested that it will no longer fund Internet supplies in Ukraine and has asked the Pentagon to take over payment.

Starlink, an internet service created by SpaceX, has proven to be a game-changer in the war to keep Ukrainian forces and the government connected as Russia targets the country’s communications infrastructure.

Although the letter from SpaceX to the Pentagon saying they could no longer fund Starlink was sent in September, according to CNN, Musk responded to the message shortly after Andriy Melnyk, Ukraine’s ambassador to Germany, told him to screw up.

Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Documents obtained by CNN show that Moscow’s SpaceX sent a letter to the Pentagon saying it could no longer fund the Starlink service in Ukraine. They asked the Pentagon to take over funding for the Ukrainian government and military use of Starlink, which they said would cost more than $120 million over the rest of the year.

In a letter sent in September, SpaceX’s director of government sales wrote: “We are unable to continue donating terminals to Ukraine or funding existing terminals indefinitely.

On October 14, Jason Jay Smart, Kyiv Post correspondent, shared a tweet It said: “Elon Musk’s Starlink says it can no longer afford to provide free services to Ukraine and is asking the Pentagon to pay for it. Starlink changed the game in war. This comes just days after Ukraine’s ambassador @MelnykAndrij told Musk to ‘fuck off’.”

Musk responded to the tweet, saying that he was “just watching [Melnyk’s] recommendation,” and added a shrug emoticon.

However, according to CNN, the letter to the Pentagon was sent before the exchange on Twitter.

How much does Starlink cost?

On October 7, Musk shared a tweet claiming that the Starlink operation (including terminals and services) in Ukraine had cost SpaceX $80 million and would “surpass $100 million” by the end of the year.

A letter SpaceX sent to the Pentagon last month claimed that if the government takes over payments for Starlink for the Ukrainian government and military, it will cost more than $120 million over the rest of the year and could cost nearly $400 million. the following 12 months.

Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to President Zelensky’s chief of staff, said on Twitter that “like it or not” Musk helped them survive “the most critical moments of the war”.

He said Ukraine would find a solution to keep Starlink running and that they “expect the company to provide a stable connection until the end of the negotiations.”

What is Starlink?

Starlink is high-speed, low-latency broadband for people and companies in remote and rural locations around the world.

It will cost you £75 a month with a one-off hardware cost of £460 which includes everything you need to get online including Starlink, WiFi router, cables and base.

But how does it work? While most satellite Internet service comes from individual geostationary satellites that orbit the planet at a distance of 35,786 km, Starlink is “a constellation of thousands of satellites that orbit the planet much closer to Earth, at a distance of about 550 km”.

They cover the entire globe, and since the satellites are in low orbit, the latency, the round-trip time between the user and the satellite, is much lower.

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