Bringing satellite Internet connectivity to some US school buses

SpaceX hopes that its Starlink subsidiary will soon be able to provide some US school buses with broadband satellite internet connectivity, mainly in rural areas. The idea is to help students study while on the road, in places where access to a quality cellular internet connection is limited.

In many parts of the US, bus trips to and from school can take more than an hour. As such, children and teenagers could use this time to do schoolwork, by means of an internet connection, but also to communicate with their families or simply to have fun and unwind.

Technically, this would mean installing antennas on the school buses, which would then receive a signal from space. The Starlink project is now seeking the approval of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to release federal funding to equip as many buses as possible. A few years ago, Google equipped some buses with routers to offer a WiFi connection to certain students, also in remote areas.

Starlink’s aim today is to offer a reliable, low-latency broadband connection absolutely anywhere, even in the most remote locations, including at sea or in the air. The satellite internet provider already offers its services to trucks, motorhomes or even boats, thanks to its satellite antenna system. Plus, two US airlines will soon be trialing the service.

Elon Musk has always considered internet access to be a fundamental right. Under his leadership, Starlink has already deployed nearly 2,000 satellites in low orbit, at an altitude of about 550km. Its ultimate goal is to be able to cover the entire US territory, in the first instance, and then the rest of the world. – AFP Relaxnews

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