Starlinks Impact on Rural America

If you have been following my podcast you will know that 20 months ago I left the land of high-speed internet that I had in Hawaii with a glorious 1000MB down and 35MB up internet speeds. For over 20 years I have enjoyed living where connectivity was never an issue.

Let me say that again for 20 years! But I knew that anytime I would visit the home in the country in southern Michigan that I grew up in the Internet was going to be an issue. To the point for years when I visited I either tethered my phone and or had a hotspot barely being able to send just email. When I moved back to that homestead I entered internet Hell!  Yes, Internet Hell. slow shitty, high latency Internet.

Today I am lucky if I can call it that to pay $89.95 a month for 15MB down and 3MB up only because a 30-foot tower was installed for $4000. With two separate accounts and 2 antennas allowing my sister’s family of 7 which includes my mom on one connection and I paying for a separate connection to my loft on the compound.

While I complain daily about the slow speed at least we have something. My Internet Service provider DMCI is a small company doing their best to deliver broadband to a wide swath of several counties that at least allows us to have some connectivity. My cellphone actually has better speeds and I know my sister’s kids largely tether their phones as sharing 15/3 with 7 people is not pretty.

The US Government has literally spent billions trying to expand high-speed Internet into rural communities. Well like any government handout big ISP’s that have received that money in my opinion have largely squandered it. They essentially used that money to build their networks into the suburbs and have largely done jack shit for true rural areas.

So while I was happy on high-speed internet for 20 years rural America has been shit on and left behind. It is the biggest travesty know to modern man. The sacrifice and putting up with slow speeds in rural America and possibly the world are very close to being over because of one man.

Elon Musk and the beautiful team at Starlink (they are hiring) have to date put about 1000 Starlink satellites of a potential 13,000 or so on this first phase into space. 60 at a time on the reusable Falcon 9. Yesterday I did not put a down payment on a Tesla! No my sister and I both put down payments on Starlink satellite systems. With a projected mid to late 2021 delivery, I am here to tell you the awaited delivery will be worth it!

Let me lay out what we are going to be able to do that is nearly impossible today!

  • Remote Meetings on Zoom etc
  • Stream a 4k Movie for the first time
  • Stream Video without buffering at the same time
  • Effectively run a business
  • Upload videos in minutes versus days
  • Get security updates timely to our PC’s
  • Security cameras with cloud storage
  • Cancel Satellite TV
  • Have full connectivity in all buildings
  • More than 1 child to be able to do remote learning
  • Not drive 12 miles to get a high-speed internet fix.
  • The list is endless!

For those that have high-speed internet connections count your blessings, you will not need to mount a Starlink antenna on your home. But for me, this will be a game-changer. It could allow me to close my office location 13 miles away, save that overhead, and build a new studio here on the compound to allow me to broadcast and stream here.

Will this be a perfect solution no but the price is right, hell we could have a system for each building and still come out ahead. It’s sure cheaper than paying the assholes from the cable company $15,000 to bring cable internet to my home 1.75 miles from where I live today. Imagine living 1.75 miles from the edge of where true high-speed Internet is available around a nearby lake community. The lake communities have the density the cable companies need to be able to make a profit.  But the 11 homes between that point and my home does not have the density needed to make it happen.

Rural Broadband woes are going to be solved by Elon Musk and the Starlink team. There may even be Tesla in my driveway at some point after all we should support companies that actually solve issues. So every Starlink launch will cause me to cheer as I know I am one day closer for the Starlink system to arrive and the availability of true high speed internet

Am I excited? Yes, I am you simply have no idea how much of a game-changer this is. I am also incredibly happy to see all the people who have had zero internet access get the beta first. Although I did see one geek like me get one even though he already had 1GB fiber to his home. It will not be long before every RV has a Starlink antenna and no longer will we be tied to our home. I am sure there will be portable systems and those that will have domes on them.

The expansion of high-speed Internet access will be a game-changer for every person in rural America that has been left behind.  Go Starlink Go!  Follow the Starlink journey here at Geek News Central and the companion Podcast.

About geeknews

Todd Cochrane is the Founder of Geek News Central and host of the Geek News Central Podcast. He is a Podcast Hall of Fame Inductee and was one of the very first podcasters in 2004. He wrote the first book on podcasting, and did many of the early Podcast Advertising deals in the podcasting space. He does two other podcasts in addition to Geek News Central. The New Media Show and Podcast Legends.

2 thoughts on “Starlinks Impact on Rural America

  1. Right on! This a win for you and countless others who should have broadband access (especially fast internet) not just for work, business, etc but also for kids who while at home doing virtual learning in a lot of rural homes.

  2. Thanks for the post Todd!

    After I saw your Facebook post about your putting a deposit down yesterday, I did the same for my son who lives north of you in Dorr, MI. They have nothing except their phones. Game changer? Absolutely!

Comments are closed.