As potential users fixate on download and upload speeds, Starlink high capacity vs low capacity is another vital difference that needs attention.
Starlink usage shows different speeds and rates depending on your location and network demand.
Starlink high capacity areas have more satellites covering the users.
In a Starlink low-capacity setting, there is insufficient bandwidth to support the traffic in that area.
We break down the difference and show you how to sign up.
Table of Contents
- Starlink Capacity Background
- What Is Starlink Low Capacity Vs High Capacity
- Starlink RV High Capacity Vs Low Capacity
- Starlink High Capacity Vs Low Capacity Sign-Up
Starlink Capacity Background
Starlink satellite dish in a residential area
Space X launched Starlink Internet to serve underserved regions. The company provides high-speed, low-latency internet to its subscribers.
However, every region Starlink covers doesn’t get the same download and upload speed or experiences similar latency.
Population density determines the rate subscribers get.
To understand Starlink high capacity vs Starlink low capacity, you must know how Starlink works.
Starlink uses low-earth orbit satellites. These satellites orbit around 550 kilometers above Earth.
The short distance between the satellites and Starlink ground stations makes getting low latency and high-speed internet possible.
However, the satellite concentration above some locations at different times makes it impossible for every Starlink subscriber to get the same speeds.
What Is Starlink Low Capacity Vs High Capacity
What Is starlink high capacity vs low capacity? Low-capacity Starlink is a service in areas with fewer satellites hovering above.
In such an area, there is limited bandwidth such that only a limited number of users can simultaneously have high speeds and low latency.
An increase in user numbers accessing the service simultaneously will cause network congestion and degraded service.
Users will get lower speeds and high latency. While it may be possible to perform basic internet activity, functions such as online gaming and seamless teleconferencing may be limited.
How Fast Is Low Capacity Starlink?
Low-capacity Starlink might not get the highest priority, but its speeds are not slouchy either.
Starlink says Starlink low capacity speed should range between 20 and 100 Mbps.
The upload speed ranges between 5 and 20 Mbps.
Again, Starlink low capacity speeds are fine for most users who aren’t using the Starlink service for low latency activity such as real-time trading, online gaming, and e-conferencing.
Compared to other legacy satellite internet providers, low-capacity Starlink still delivers a better service even at the current speeds.
To a user who’s used to dismal speeds, Starlink low capacity speeds are still a great deal.
On the better end, high Capacity Starlink is a service in areas with more satellite coverage.
Users in Starlink high-capacity areas experience sufficient bandwidth to support heavy network traffic without congestion or network degradation.
In these areas, an increase in users might cause a slight drop in speed or a rise in latency.
However, the rates would still be stable enough to support high-speed, low-latency activities for many users.
How Fast is High Capacity Starlink?
Busy areas are more likely to have Starlink high capacity.
Starlink high-capacity users experience blazing speeds suitable for data rate-heavy activities.
According to Starlink, you can experience download speeds of up to 220 Mbps. You can also upload data at about 40 Mbps.
Starlink high capacity speeds can compete with non-satellite ISPs that provide fiber-optic internet service.
Let’s check out what else you can expect from high capacity vs low capacity Starlink.
Latency is the time it takes for a data request to move from your device to the satellite and back to your device.
Starlink relies on low-lying satellites to keep its latency low. Interestingly, latency is one of the major factors that remain unaffected for high and low-capacity Starlink users.
Both sets of users experience between 25 and 50 ms latency.
However, it might go even lower when satellites move. Individual cases have shown latency as low as 10 ms.
Data capping is all about fair usage.
In areas where users gobble up large chunks of data, some users might experience lower speeds when the network is congested.
To that end, Starlink imposes data caps on users in low-capacity areas.
Low capacity Starlink limits data to only 1 TB per month. Users exceeding the allocated data can get suspended service or speed reduction.
However, you don’t need to worry if you are in a low-capacity Starlink area. Starlink insists service suspension is a last resort if network congestion hits extreme levels.
On the other hand, high capacity Starlink has no data limits. Users experience unlimited data even during peak hours.
While speed might be low, they can still enjoy the most intensive data-rate services.
Starlink high-capacity users don’t only experience higher speeds and unlimited data. They also pay more per month.
High-capacity Starlink costs $120 monthly. However, low-capacity Starlink can cost about $90.
Though the monthly charges differ, high and low capacity Starlink have similar equipment charges.
The kit consisting of a 2nd Generation rectangular Starlink satellite dish, a Starlink router, power cord, cables and the default mounting tripod costs $599.
Tip: You can replace the mounting tripod with other Starlink mounts.
Speaking of costs, there’s also a similar optional charge for high vs low capacity Starlink.
Starlink offers a protection plan covering damage, theft, or equipment theft for $12 monthly.
However, you can pay a one-time fee of $240 that covers the equipment for however long you use the Starlink equipment.
Here’s a summary of Starlink low vs high capacity.
|Feature||High Capacity Starlink||Low capacity Starlink|
|Data limit||No limit on data||1TB/month|
Starlink RV High Capacity Vs Low Capacity
Internet access in an RV
Starlink RV is a service that keeps you connected while you are on the road. While most of the US gets decent Starlink internet speeds, some large chunks still fall under Starlink low capacity.
Therefore, you’d have to check the coverage map to find out whether the area you intend to set up in is high or low capacity.
Starlink RV low capacity speeds can fall on the lower end of the 50-500 Mbps range (as low as 5-50 Mbps) depending on your location and real-time data traffic.
Plenty of areas in the Midwest USA show up as low capacity, while busier places in the US, Canada, and Mexico come up as high capacity.
Regardless of location, Starlink for RV or Starlink ROAM costs $30 more than standard Starlink at $150.
Starlink insists it costs more to connect you to a satellite every time you move.
You also get permanent Starlink RV(In-motion Starlink) equipment at a steeper premium price of about $2500.
However, you can opt for the standard $599 fee. One of the upsides of the premium equipment fee is the flat high-performance dish.
Starlink High Capacity Vs Low Capacity Sign-Up
Signing up to Starlink is simple. However, you won’t immediately know whether your area is low or high capacity. Follow this procedure to sign up.
- Visit the Starlink website.
- Enter your address in the provided box. The website will search the area and notify you if it’s high or low capacity Starlink.
- Place an order online.
- Pay the refundable $99 deposit.
However, you can join the waitlist if your area isn’t available. Alternatively, you can subscribe for the Best Effort Service.
You might get similar speeds to low capacity Starlink, but it will be a step-up if you are not getting any internet service in your location.
As more people subscribe to Starlink, Space X continues to improve its service to accommodate more users.
Low-capacity Starlink could get better speeds if Space X stays on course to launch its projected 30,000 satellites into orbit and introduce the new V2 laser-enabled Satellites.