Starlink Canada, the option for you?
When fibre and cable aren’t available, Starlink Canada has become the natural choice for many Canadians. Why is it so popular?
Internet via satellite is nothing new, but Starlink has certainly popularized the technology by putting it to good use. Founded by Elon Musk, who took advantage of its notoriety to spread the word, the company demonstrated the viability of its technology to the world by deploying the Internet in Ukraine, when the country’s network had been rendered inoperable by the Russians.
Starlink is now starting to roll out, and its arrival in Canada brings with it a number of arguments in favor of its technology. Let’s face it, satellite Internet is best suited to people living in remote areas where there is no coverage, or where connection speeds are lower than those offered by Starlink Canada.
The Secret of Starlink Canada
Starlink is based on a constellation of 1,600 small satellites in low-earth orbit, located around 600 kilometers from the Earth. These satellites are linked by laser beams, enabling fast, efficient communication. This proximity to the globe enables connections with a latency of 20 milliseconds. Speed is of the essence, and Starlink Canada holds its own in this respect, offering 100 Mb and unlimited data usage.
Until now, satellite networks have been deployed in high orbit 35,000 kilometers from the Earth. This distance, however, results in a latency of 600 milliseconds, and subscriptions are expensive. Starlink has therefore brought about a revolution in satellite-based Internet access for individuals and businesses.
Rates and subscription
Starlink users will need to purchase a satellite dish to receive Starlink. Two models are available. The classic dish is priced at $759 on the Starlink Canada website but regularly benefits from special offers.
Starlink offers a second, higher-end satellite antenna, the High Yield Antenna, for $3,170. It’s capable of higher speeds, can connect to more satellites, and boasts superior build quality to withstand harsh weather conditions.
What subscriptions does Starlink offer?
Starlink Canada offers two subscriptions:
- Standard 100 Mbit subscription for $140 per month
- 1TB subscription for $320. This subscription includes 1TB of priority data that will be downloaded at a higher speed than the standard 100 Mb.
What are Starlink’s strengths and weaknesses?
Starlink Canada’s technology is distinguished by these three advantages over its competitors, which currently enable it to offer a unique product range.
- Starlink represents a major commercial force for individuals located in disconnected regions or without high-speed access. The company also has great potential for businesses and entrepreneurs who finally have access to online tools, cloud services and communication platforms, enabling them to develop their activities even in remote areas.
- Starlink also offers advantages in terms of resilience and security. By using a constellation of satellites, the Starlink network can bypass the problems of damaged cables or terrestrial network failures, ensuring a stable connection even in the event of natural disasters or emergencies.
- Beyond speed, the response time of 20 milliseconds (between 25 and 50 for priority data) is a real strength, enabling access to the Internet and online activities in very respectable conditions.
Not everything is rosy, however. Because the system relies on a satellite antenna, often located in remote areas with harsh climatic conditions, using Starlink can also pose a few problems.
- Satellite antenna installation requires a clear outdoor space.
- Many users have reported a frost problem, mainly affecting the cable connecting the satellite dish to the home. This can be quickly damaged, particularly by frost. One solution would be to wrap it in a double covering, one insulating and the other waterproof.
- The cable would also encounter problems when left in direct sunlight during hot weather. Solutions found by users have been to lay the cable in an area that remains in the shade throughout the day. Other users have also protected and buried the cable.
Is it worth buying used Starlink equipment?
As for the $750 kit, it’s difficult to give a clear answer, since Starlink not only frequently runs promotions, but also sometimes sacrifices prices. Currently, it can be found for $199.
At such a low price, used antennas selling for $350 immediately lose their appeal, even for models a few months old. These second-hand kits can therefore be interesting, especially the more recent ones, if there are no Starlink promotions running.
As for the High-Performance model, it’s harder to find. You can find them on eBay for between $1,500 and $2,500, but they’re rare. If you find one in excellent condition, it can indeed be a very interesting offer.
Advantages and disadvantages
|Coverage in remote areas||Materials to buy|
|High speed and response times||Higher cost than cable Internet|
|No contract of employment||Cable sensitive to heat and icy conditions|
Where to buy Starlink equipment
Starlink satellite antennas can be ordered directly from the Starlink website. Used antennas can also be found on sites such as eBay or Kijiji.
How do I subscribe to Starlink?
Where is Starlink available?
Starlink is a network of 1600 satellites covering the Earth, and is available throughout Canada, even in the most remote regions.
Starlink Canada is a technology that brings fast, reliable Internet access to users in remote or underserved areas. With its constellation of low-orbit satellites, Starlink has overcome the limitations of traditional satellite Internet services by offering high connection speeds and low latency. This represents a significant step forward in eliminating the digital divide and opens up new opportunities for businesses that previously had no access to high-speed broadband.