Elon Musk activates free SpaceX Starlink satellite internet service in Ukraine

SpaceX founder and billionaire Elon Musk is providing free satellite internet service in Ukraine through his company Starlink, as Russia invades the country and causes blackouts.

Starlink is a growing network of small satellites that SpaceX has been built since 2018 to provide high-speed Internet access worldwide. On Monday, Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Digital Transformation Mykhailo Fedorov, tweeted that a truck full of Starlink terminals had arrived on Ukrainian soil, after he had requested them.

Fedorov had appealed to Musk in a Tweeter On Saturday, asking him to extend Starlink’s high-speed broadband internet services to the beleaguered country, noting rhetorically that “while you’re trying to colonize Mars – Russia is trying to occupy Ukraine! As your rockets land successfully from space – Russian rockets attack Ukrainian civilians!”

Musk apparently agreed, tweeting on Saturday that Starlink service was active in Ukraine and also agreeing to send more Starlink terminals to expand the country’s bandwidth.

“Starlink service is now active in Ukraine. More terminals on the way,” Musk said. tweeted.

Invading Russian troops disrupted Ukraine’s internet infrastructure, rendering service unreliable and spotty in some parts of the country.

Starlink service, which its website describes as “ideal for rural and remote communities” and other places where internet connections have historically been unavailable, is expected to be more reliable than terrestrial systems that are currently down.

A Starlink terminal costs $499. The system was recently used to restore communications to remote villages in Tonga after a volcanic eruption triggered a tsunamicutting off internet service.

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