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Satellite internet tier at $500 per month

SpaceX has quietly rolled out a new, more powerful “premium” tier of its Starlink satellite internet service that’s targeted at businesses and enterprise customers.

The new product, which was added to the company’s website Tuesday night, comes at five times the cost of the consumer-focused standard service: Starlink Premium requires a $ 500 fully refundable deposit, a $ 2,500 fee for the antenna and router, and service is $ 500 per month.

The standard Starlink service, which launched in October 2020, has a $ 99 fully refundable deposit, a $ 499 hardware fee, and service is $ 99 per month.

But Elon Musk’s company touts improved hardware, faster service speeds and priority support for its premium customers.

“Starlink Premium has more than double the antenna capability of Starlink, delivering faster internet speeds and higher throughput for the highest demand users, including businesses,” the SpaceX website said.

According to the Starlink website, the first premium deliveries will begin in the second quarter.

Another key difference for Starlink Premium is its “unlimited service locations” flexibility. Unlike the standard product, which only guarantees service at a specific service address, SpaceX advertises Starlink Premium as capable of connecting from anywhere.

“Order as many Starlinks as needed and manage all of your service locations, no matter how remote, from a single account,” SpaceX said.

For service, the company said Starlink Premium users can expect download speeds of 150 megabits per second to 500 megabits per second, with latency between 20 milliseconds to 40 milliseconds. That represents an improvement in the top part of the download range, as the standard service advertises speeds between 100 megabits per second to 200 megabits per second, as well as a tighter latency range.

Additionally, SpaceX said the Premium satellite antenna “is designed for improved performance in extreme weather conditions,” although the website offered no specifics. The standard Starlink product features a “Snow Melt functionality,” which heats itself to remove snow or ice.

SpaceX continues to advertise Starlink service with unlimited service usage, saying that “at this time there are no data caps.”

The company’s standard product has more than 145,000 users in 25 countries around the world as of January, with nearly 1,900 satellites in orbit.

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