For years the dream of competition in the world of home internet has been just that; a dream. Now in 2023, we are starting to see it become a reality. Wireless internet from places like T-Mobile and Verizon has come on strong recently. New faster satellite internet from SpaceX, and fiber internet have all expanded recently, meaning many Americans who may have had two options in the past now have 4 or 5 options.
Now Amazon wants to join that list by offering high speed internet from space, similar to SpaceX’s Starlink service.
Here is everything we know about Amazon’s new home internet service:
Where is it today?
In October of 2022, Amazon announced their Project Kuiper would launch more than 3,000 satellites into low-earth orbit to offer this home internet service. To do this, Amazon has announced plans to build the required satellites in Kirkland, Washington.
Amazon has also secured a deal with ULA, Arianespace, and Blue Origin to launch these satellites into space starting in early 2023. With this deal, Amazon hopes to launch multiple prototypes into space to test the system before mass production starts.
Amazon is facing a deadline as the FCC has given it until mid-2026 to have 1,600 satellites in space or face losing its FCC approval for the project.
Will this be like older satellite internet services?
These satellites will offer far better home internet compared to older satellite home internet service. With faster speeds and lower latency, Amazon is hoping to become a major player in the world of home internet at a time when home internet is becoming more critical than ever.
What speeds should you expect?
SpaceX’s Starlink is likely a good example. A recent report from Ookla.com says Starlink is averaging about 90.55 Mbps down and 9.33 Mbps up with a latency of 43. This is a crazy jump in internet speed for millions of Americans living in rural areas that struggle to get home internet. So, as more satellites have been launched, the speed has increased.
What price should you expect?
Reports are that Amazon is hoping to undersell Starlink. So look for a price at or below $100 a month. That may not sound cheap to some, but if you live in a rural area high speed internet for under $100 is a great deal.
This could be huge news for cord cutters if Amazon is able to follow through on their plans. Studies have shown that as more options for home internet come, online pricing has come down, and data caps have gone away. For now, though, we have to wait as we are likely still years away from these networks becoming fully built out.