Sopa Images | Lightrocket | Getty Images
WASHINGTON — SpaceX plans to start testing its Starlink satellite-to-cell service with T-Mobile this yr, an govt of Elon Musk’s firm stated Monday.
“We’re going to learn a lot by doing — not necessarily by overanalyzing — and getting out there,” Jonathan Hofeller, SpaceX vp of Starlink enterprise gross sales, stated on a panel on the Satellite 2023 convention in Washington, D.C.
The marketplace for space-based knowledge providers that go on to units on the bottom, akin to smartphones, is extensively thought of to have profitable potential, with quite a lot of satellite tv for pc corporations partnering with terrestrial cell community operators, or MNOs, and system makers to fill in protection gaps throughout the Earth.
SpaceX and T-Mobile introduced their partnership in August, vowing to “end mobile dead zones.”
Sign up right here to obtain weekly editions of CNBC’s Investing in Space publication.
SpaceX has launched about 4,000 Starlink satellites thus far, and not too long ago rolled out its extra highly effective “V2 Mini” satellites, which it says have quadruple the capability of the earlier era.
Hofeller stated Monday that SpaceX is manufacturing six satellites per day at its facility close to Seattle and that he believes the corporate is now not manufacturing its earlier 1.5 sequence of Starlink satellites. The firm can also be producing “thousands” of person terminals per day, he stated.
While SpaceX plans to make even bigger second-generation satellites, and has “made a few” up to now, Hofeller emphasised that launching these is “tied very closely to Starship,” the corporate’s towering rocket that has but to succeed in area.
SpaceX has “well over” 1 million Starlink customers, Hofeller stated, having handed that milestone in December. The firm not too long ago introduced that its Starlink enterprise “had a cash flow positive quarter” in 2022, and it’s aiming for the unit to “make money” in 2023.