Starlink: SpaceX would only produce 5,000 dishes per week but promises to increase the rate

SpaceX would only produce 5,000 Starlink antennas per week for satellite Internet service. The company reportedly intends to ramp up production later this year to meet strong demand.

Credit: SpaceX

At the 2021 SATELLITE annual conference, held on September 7, SpaceX CFO Bret Johnson said that the company was currently producing about 5,000 Starlink antennas per week, or about 250,000 dishes per year.

While Starlink announced that it had 100,000 users last August, more than 600,000 pre-orders are currently pending. By producing only 5,000 dishes per week, SpaceX would therefore need more than two years to catch up.

How does SpaceX plan to increase the production rate of the dishes?

Starlink’s satellite dishes, which receive an Internet signal from the company’s satellites, currently cost customers 499 euros, to which must be added 59 euros for processing and delivery. The subscription is not very affordable in France either, since it takes 99 euros per month. Although the price of the equipment is high, SpaceX would not make any profit on these dishes.

In fact, the first versions of satellite dishes originally cost SpaceX $ 3,000 before the company managed to cut manufacturing down to $ 1,500, then recently at $ 1,300. The parable would therefore cost nearly twice to manufacture than its selling price.

During his speech at this year’s Mobile World Congress, the leader confirmed that the next version of his antenna will be even cheaper to produce, but thatit will not yet be enough to reduce the final price for customers. However, Johnson expressed his optimism about the possibility of making lower the cost of the dish to $ 250 within a few years.

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To meet massive customer demand, Johnson added that SpaceX plans to “multiply” the production capacity of its dishes in the coming months, much to the chagrin of the rebellious deputies. For now, production would be hampered by the chip shortage that currently affects the entire industry.

Source: PCMag

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