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The kit came today. I’d already installed a j-mount on the eave of my back porch, so setting it up took about 4 minutes (and another 5 or 6 for it to drive around and figure out where it was).

I’ll give my first impression in pictures, all three taken from the same place (back porch, only place my cell phone reliably works.

Cell Phone (Verizon)
96495



Century Link (it timed out before it could run the upload test, but it went for about 5 minutes)
96496



Starlink:
96497
 

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Starlink has opened up on a first come, first service basis an opportunity to sign up for their internet service via LEO (low earth orbit) satellites. They advertise high speed, low latency and no data limits.

Starlink
Satellite is what i have. Got it 20 years ago. $50 per/mos. No limit of use. Full service with a lot of movies on youtube. All news stations on-line. They had a special life-time charge $50 per/mo. the company is now owned by AT&T however AT&T when they got the company all contracts the same for me from other company. I do like having full net service. Watch a lot of free old movies. I have news stations from all over the world. Interesting how U.S. and other countries report the same news to suit their outlook on world news. China news, Russia, Iran, and a few other countries sure see world news in a different way than in the U.S.
 

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The kit came today. I’d already installed a j-mount on the eave of my back porch, so setting it up took about 4 minutes (and another 5 or 6 for it to drive around and figure out where it was).

I’ll give my first impression in pictures, all three taken from the same place (back porch, only place my cell phone reliably works.

Cell Phone (Verizon)



Century Link (it timed out before it could run the upload test, but it went for about 5 minutes)



Starlink
:
I'll be in heaven if I get that speed.
 

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Can't wait until we get ours either. "By the end of the year" is the best estimate we've gotten.
They said late summer here. Here's hoping. I have the slowest dsl in the world I think here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #68 ·
Wonderful!!
 

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I'll be in heaven if I get that speed.
They said late summer here. Here's hoping. I have the slowest dsl in the world I think here.
There’s been a few noticeable outages. 30s here 1m there. It’s noticeable when web pages load this fast, and suddenly they stop. Had it been on DSL, and the blue bar stopped moving, I would not have realized anything was happening.

The tribal wisdom is that the first few days have hiccups as the dish is figuring out precisely where to point, and it has to wait 24hrs to update firmware.

It definitely feels like a Beta. The app has real-time metrics, and even a text-based debug code screen you can read if you want to see what is happening. It says I have had 12 minutes of outages in the first 4 hours; 2 minutes of no satellite, and 10 minutes of “other outages”. It actually has 22 minutes listed, but the first 10 minutes of “no satellite” were just it turning on, connecting to the local router and pointing around.

This band in NC (looks to be about 4 cells spread across the state) just went live yesterday and today, and the beta-base say that the first few days are rocky and improve rapidly as they dial in the ground stations.
 

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Can't wait until I get mine here in Texas. May take a while though. They finally piped daylight here when I was three years old.
There’s actually a couple cells that just opened up in north-Texas/south-OK. It seems random how they’re doing it, but I’m sure they have a method.

There are no published maps, but it’s been discerned that the US map is covered by a honeycomb-grid, with cells that are roughly 15 miles across. There doesn’t seem to be a predictable model to which cells get turned on, when.

They’ve built a series of ground stations all over the US, and a lot of them have snuck in without people noticing. Google earth and street images show them to be about 100x100’, privacy fenced enclosures with a small shack and 4-6 big white balls - maybe 6 or 8 feet in diameter.

Until they turn on the feature that lets the satellites communicate with each other via laser, a functioning cell has to be populated with user dishes that can see the same roaming satellite as the ground stations. They apparently build the ground station, choose few local cells, and send an email to the first preorders in those cells to let them know they’re going live and about to charge their card. Even being in Texas, with no mention of people around you having it, you could get the email tomorrow.

Got any new fenced enclosures holding giant white beach balls around you?
 

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There’s actually a couple cells that just opened up in north-Texas/south-OK. It seems random how they’re doing it, but I’m sure they have a method.

There are no published maps, but it’s been discerned that the US map is covered by a honeycomb-grid, with cells that are roughly 15 miles across. There doesn’t seem to be a predictable model to which cells get turned on, when.

They’ve built a series of ground stations all over the US, and a lot of them have snuck in without people noticing. Google earth and street images show them to be about 100x100’, privacy fenced enclosures with a small shack and 4-6 big white balls - maybe 6 or 8 feet in diameter.

Until they turn on the feature that lets the satellites communicate with each other via laser, a functioning cell has to be populated with user dishes that can see the same roaming satellite as the ground stations. They apparently build the ground station, choose few local cells, and send an email to the first preorders in those cells to let them know they’re going live and about to charge their card. Even being in Texas, with no mention of people around you having it, you could get the email tomorrow.

Got any new fenced enclosures holding giant white beach balls around you?
If they head from Dallas to Houston I should get mine before Houston does.
 

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I have my own guinea pig. No internet or home phone in almost seven years ... It's really been good . I get it at the office and on this phone...
 

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Any update.
Cancelled DirectTV yesterday. We’ve wanted off “cable” for years, but the little TV that we do watch is not available on an antenna. The wife set up a Hulu account, and, between that and Netflix, our TV watching options are more than adequate. The cost savings over DirectTV will amortize the cost of the Starlink equipment in about 8 months.

I’m planing to call CenturyStink tomorrow and see if I can get them to a more reasonable package pricing over threat of cancelling outright. Our package is for 50mb/s, but we’re normally around 0.5-1.5mb/s. If they can bump us down to a cheaper 5mb/s plan but keep the actual service they’ve given us these last 8 years, I’ll let them keep charging me.

I’m averaging about 3-4min of outage per 24hrs with Starlink in Beta. That should improve as only about 60% of the satellites in orbit are functional yet. My hope is to have a cheap, low bandwidth plan as my backup. I’ve come to understand that you can pipe two services into a single router for failsafe. That would help when I’m on a Zoom call with the C-Suite overseas, and I get that 10 second satellite outage.

So far, we’re beyond happy.
 

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Here’s the outside end of the equipment, FWIW. Incredibly easy to DIY install.
97035


I’ve since cleaned it up a bit. That was about 15 minutes after the package arrived, and I wanted to confirm my install was solid before taking the time to route the wiring right.
 

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Cancelled DirectTV yesterday. We’ve wanted off “cable” for years, but the little TV that we do watch is not available on an antenna. The wife set up a Hulu account, and, between that and Netflix, our TV watching options are more than adequate. The cost savings over DirectTV will amortize the cost of the Starlink equipment in about 8 months.

I’m planing to call CenturyStink tomorrow and see if I can get them to a more reasonable package pricing over threat of cancelling outright. Our package is for 50mb/s, but we’re normally around 0.5-1.5mb/s. If they can bump us down to a cheaper 5mb/s plan but keep the actual service they’ve given us these last 8 years, I’ll let them keep charging me.

I’m averaging about 3-4min of outage per 24hrs with Starlink in Beta. That should improve as only about 60% of the satellites in orbit are functional yet. My hope is to have a cheap, low bandwidth plan as my backup. I’ve come to understand that you can pipe two services into a single router for failsafe. That would help when I’m on a Zoom call with the C-Suite overseas, and I get that 10 second satellite outage.

So far, we’re beyond happy.
Our the outages predictable?

Thanks
 

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Our the outages predictable?

Thanks
No. Reconnect seems to be, but the disconnects come without warning.

That said, it’s still in beta, so a lot of the disconnects show as “other”, meaning they’re messing with stuff, either on the satellite or ground station end. The “no satellite” down time should reduce with time, since only 2/3 of the launched satellites are operational yet, and everything that is up there is only like 25% of the initial roll-out plan.

The thing that I’m most impressed with so far is that it is satellite internet that feels like terrestrial internet. I’ve never had Hughes/Viasat here at home, but I have used it serval dozen times in my travels. The latency of traditional satellite internet makes it pretty much useless for anything other than TV and email, and web-browsing just feels clunky. This service actually feels like terrestrial service.
 

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A couple people in my area have received theirs, so I hope that means I will soon. There doesn't seem to be any way to find out where you are on the list or how it is determined when you get your equipment.
 

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No. Reconnect seems to be, but the disconnects come without warning.

That said, it’s still in beta, so a lot of the disconnects show as “other”, meaning they’re messing with stuff, either on the satellite or ground station end. The “no satellite” down time should reduce with time, since only 2/3 of the launched satellites are operational yet, and everything that is up there is only like 25% of the initial roll-out plan.

The thing that I’m most impressed with so far is that it is satellite internet that feels like terrestrial internet. I’ve never had Hughes/Viasat here at home, but I have used it serval dozen times in my travels. The latency of traditional satellite internet makes it pretty much useless for anything other than TV and email, and web-browsing just feels clunky. This service actually feels like terrestrial service.
Thanks. We are in the same boat with previous satellite.

I have looked into this and would be eligible. But also at the extreme north of current service. So will be holding off for awhile.

Hope it works
 
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