Published Oct 21, 2020Elon Musk's plan to bring high-speed internet to rural Canada has got the go-ahead from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission.
As previously reported, Musk's SpaceX had filed an application with the CRTC this summer in hopes of bringing the company's Starlink internet plans to Canada. By launching thousands of low Earth orbit satellites, SpaceX aims to bring high-speed internet to hard-to-reach rural ares in Canada and across the globe.
Typically satellites obit at more than 20,000 kilometres above the Earth, but those proposed by SpaceX will orbit at just 500 kilometres, with the satellites then speeding interaction with residential computers down on the ground.
To do this in Canada, though, Musk needs what's called a Basic International Telecommunications Services, or BITS, licence — something the CRTC has now granted him.
"The Commission received 2,585 interventions regarding Space Exploration Technologies Corp.'s BITs application," the decision from the CRTC reads [via CBC]. "After consideration of the comments received, the Commission has approved the application and a BITS licence is enclosed."
SpaceX's low-orbiting Starlink satellites have been getting launched into space since May 2019. So far, it has about 835 satellites up there, but it will need 12,000 to get the network going.
So at this point, it's unclear when Canadian will actually be able to call Elon Musk their ISP.
Earlier this year, Starlink stated it plans on "rapidly expanding to near global coverage of the populated world by 2021."