The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) is gearing up to decide on Starlink’s bid to offer satellite-based broadband in India. This decision, set for September 20, will determine if Elon Musk’s SpaceX venture secures the global mobile personal communication by satellite (GMPCS) services licence.
What Happened? To put things in perspective, OneWeb, backed by Bharti Group, and Jio Space, Reliance Jio’s satellite division, have already received the green light from DoT.
Starlink, Musk’s ambitious satellite internet project, had knocked on DoT’s doors last year with its application. And if the buzz is anything to go by, the odds seem in Starlink’s favour.
An insider from DoT speaking with Business Standard said, “Given that other players have secured the licence and Starlink’s application checks all boxes, there’s little standing in its way.”
Not the end game: However, the journey doesn’t end with the licence. Starlink will need the Department of Space’s nod and, crucially, the spectrum to roll out its services. The industry is keenly awaiting the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s stance on satellite spectrum allocation.
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Starlink’s vision? To revolutionize broadband, especially in India’s connectivity-starved regions. With over 5,000 satellites orbiting closer to Earth, it promises faster and more efficient internet. As of May 2023, Starlink boasts 1.5 million subscribers.
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