SpaceX is making lots of progress with rolling out its Starlink constellations around Earth, with SpaceX CEO Elon Musk recently announcing connectivity is now available across all continents.
The very first Starlink satellite was launched back in 2019, and since then, it has launched more than 3,000 satellites providing internet access to individuals living in rural areas and even the nation of Ukraine. SpaceX doesn't plan on stopping at just a few thousand Starlink satellites, as the company recently received regulatory approval for 12,000 Starlink satellites, with the possibility of international regulators giving Musk an approval for 30,000 satellites total.
Starlink won't just be for home internet access in rural areas as SpaceX has announced new plans to bring Starlink internet to cruise liners, planes, and even vehicles. Notably, Elon Musk previously stated that plans are currently being drawn up between SpaceX and T-Mobile to bring Starlink connectivity to mobile phones. With many plans for Starlink in the works, Musk has taken to his personal Twitter account to celebrate the recent launch of SpaceX's Falcon 9 workhorse rocket that transported an additional fifty-four Starlink satellites into orbit.
Furthermore, Musk wrote on Twitter that Starlink is now active on all continents, with its connectivity even stretching as far as Antarctica. Researchers stationed at McMurdo Station, a part of the United States Antarctic Program, have received a Starlink terminal that they'll use to improve the bandwidth and connectivity used for scientific developments.
As outlined by NewAtlas, Starlink becoming available for researchers located in Antarctica was made possible through Starlink's laser links that connect the satellites in orbit. The laser links between satellites eliminate the need for ground relay stations, making the internet connection possible in such a harsh, rural environment as the Antarctic.
Additionally, Musk recently confirmed via Twitter that SpaceX is in talks with Apple about enabling Starlink for iPhone. However, judging by Apple's adoption rate for new technology, it would likely be some time before the company jumps onto the Starlink bandwagon, as Apple typically likes to wait until the technology is proven effective before integrating it into its products. For more information on this story, check out the link below.