SpaceX applies for Canadian telecom licence as it expands rural internet offerings

Jun 19 2020, 4:03 pm

Elon Musk’s SpaceX is applying for a telecom licence in Canada as it expands its high-speed satellite internet offerings.

Space Exploration Technologies Corp., the full name for SpaceX, has applied for several Basic International Telecommunications Services (BITS) Licences, according to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission’s (CRTC) website.

The application comes at the same time that SpaceX’s Starlink satellite internet service is aiming to implement high-speed internet across the globe.

“Starlink will deliver high speed broadband internet to locations where access has been unreliable, expensive, or completely unavailable,” the company says on its website.

“Starlink is targeting service in the Northern U.S. and Canada in 2020, rapidly expanding to near global coverage of the populated world by 2021.”

More than 1,600 people have written to the CRTC about whether to approve the licence, many of them supportive.

“Rural telecommunications service, while only affecting 10-15% of the population, should be supported to the fullest extent possible by the Federal Government. Competition in the field would be expanded by Space Exploration Technologies joining the sector and help increase online opportunities to those outside suburban and downtown areas,” wrote Christopher Connors from Sudbury, Ontario.

“There has to be a better option for rural internet. This is it. Please allow this to go through,” said Patryk Wegrzyn from Trenton, Ontario.

The last day the CRTC is accepting comments on whether to approve SpaceX’s licences is June 19.

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