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Elon Musk’s Starlink Halts Pre-Booking In India: Here's Why
We are gearing up towards the satellite broadband revolution in India sometime soon as tech giants as gearing up to launch their services in the country. One such company that is eying to launch its satellite broadband services in India is Elon Musk's Starlink, which will let users experience high-speed data.
The Starlink internet service is touted to use satellites to provide high-speed internet connectivity of up to 150Mbps to users. Currently, the company is in the beta phase and it is eying to launch additional satellites to deliver improved internet connectivity, faster speeds and other enhancements in the future. Also, Starlink plans to increase the speed of its internet service to up to 300Mbps.
Now, amidst the traction towards the satellite internet connection from Starlink, the company has been asked to halt the pre-booking in the country. Let's take a look at why the company has been ordered to do so.
Starlink Halts Pre-Booking In India
A few days back, the government of India issued a public advisory against Starlink Internet Services, which is a satellite internet company owned by Elon Musk. As per the Indian government, the company is yet to get the license to provide satellite internet services in the country. Also, in a public advisory, the government has asked citizens to refrain from paying for the services advertised by Starlink.
Furthermore, the government has asked Starlink to accept booking for its satellite internet services in the country with immediate effect. As a result of this, the Elon Musk-owned company has stopped accepting pre-booking for its satellite internet services in India.
Despite the high traction among potential users, Starlink failed to get the licence to provide satellite internet services in the country. Earlier, the Department of Telecom (DoT) asked Starlink to comply with the Indian regulatory framework to provide satellite communication services. It was asked to refrain from accepting pre-booking in India without the necessary licence.
Abiding by the government order, Starlink's pre-booking page on its website shows that the service is not available in your area. It reads that they will launch additional satellites and expand their coverage area. It notes users to check for availability in the future.
Starlink Pre-Booking Cost
At the time of introducing its satellite internet service, Starlink announced that it is accepting pre-orders from interested customers who want to try its service. The cost of pre-booking is $99 (approx. Rs. 7,500) that can be paid using a debit or credit card or via other payment modes.
The pre-booking of Starlink with the kit costs $499 (nearly Rs. 50,000). This is relatively more expensive as the other regular broadband services that exist in the country cost a maximum of Rs. 5,000 for the same. Furthermore, users need to pay the monthly charge of $99 (approx. Rs. 7,500) to use the service. Given the premium cost, there were expectations that the Starlink satellite service will be an exceptional product.
For now, there is no clarity on whether Starlink will refund users who paid the security deposit or not. However, it can operate in the country after getting the required licence and meeting the regulatory norms in the country.