Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has announced that, in partnership with T-Mobile, Starlink’s Gen-2 satellites will be able to project signals directly to mobile phones, providing roughly 2 to 4 Megabits per second connection speeds. T-Mobile’s press release indicates that the plan is called ‘Coverage Above and Beyond,’ and will bring cell phone connectivity everywhere, “even in many of the most remote locations previously unreachable by traditional cell signals.”
Musk later confirmed to a user on Twitter that via the same technology, Tesla vehicles will also be able to connect to Starlink’s Gen-2 satellites to gain access to faster internet speeds. Currently, Tesla vehicles connect to AT&T’s LTE network.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 26, 2022
SpaceX will use a portion of T-Mobile’s 5G spectrum, called “mid-band PCS,” to allow the new Starlink satellites to connect directly to cellphones, according to Electrek.
The Starlink satellites will be able to provide a 2–4Mbps speed connection directly to smartphones, which will be shared by everyone in the satellite’s coverage area, according to Musk. It is worth noting that the bandwidth shared among several devices and vehicles won’t be enough for a smooth streaming experience, but it’ll be enough to allow you a basic connection in areas where you might not be getting a signal.
“We’ve always thought differently about what it means to keep customers connected, and that’s why we’re working with the best to deliver coverage above and beyond anything customers have ever seen before,” said Mike Sievert, CEO of T-Mobile. Whereas Musk said, “the important thing about this is that it means there are no dead zones anywhere in the world for your cell phone.”
According to Electrek, T-Mobile aims to include ‘Coverage Above and Beyond’ with several of its existing plans at no additional cost.
The Gen-2 Starlink satellites will launch aboard SpaceX’s Starship rocket in 2023, with service expected to begin later that year.
At this time, it’s uncertain if Tesla drivers will have to pay for Premium Connectivity to access the connection.
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