SpaceX activates Starlink service for the first time in Asia in Japan

SpaceX announced on Monday that it has activated Starlink in Japan, marking the first time the company’s satellite internet service has been made available in Asia.

The company announced the expansion on Twitter, sharing a link to their website’s service availability map showing Starlink is now active on the northern half of the island nation, with the exception of the Hokkaido prefecture.

According to the map Starlink will be available in the Hokkaido prefecture and the rest of country before the end of 2022.

According to Nikkei Asia, Starlink will be a welcomed addition for the mountainous areas of Japan that have struggled from unreliable or expensive, difficult to access internet service. The many remote islands around Japan will also benefit from the satellite internet service.

For customers in Japan wanting to sign up for Starlink, they will have to pay 73,000 yen (~$695 CAD/$500 USD) for the hardware, along with a 12,300 yen (~$116 CAD/$84 USD) monthly service fee.

While Starlink is only now available in Japan, the country’s Defense Ministry has already been investigating adding the service to its Maritime Self-Defense Force.

As we previously reported they are considering equipping their vessels engaged in long-term voyages with Starlink in order to boost the existing telecommunication capabilities on the vessels for non-secure communication.

Starlink won’t be available in nearby China any time soon however, if ever. Elon Musk said this week that China has told him they don’t want him providing Starlink service in their country.

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