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HomeNewsElon Musk's Starlink set for Kenya and Tanzania availability in Q1 2023

Elon Musk’s Starlink set for Kenya and Tanzania availability in Q1 2023

Satellite internet company Starlink, which is owned by billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk, is set to start operations in Kenya and Tanzania in 2023.

According to reports, users in the two East African countries will be able to access satellite internet beamed by Starlink in the first quarter of 2023. This is as per the company’s earlier released schedule.

However, recently, the Tanzanian communications industry regulator has confirmed that Musk’s company had applied for licensing to be able to offer satellite internet in the country, making Tanzania likely to have the service sooner within the specified January – March 2023 timeline.

On the continent, Starlink is currently approved to operate in Nigeria and Mozambique.

When it eventually becomes available, Starlink is expected to cost Kenyans just under Kshs 15,000 per month in subscription fees and a one-off cost of about Kshs 70,000 to acquire the hardware (dish, router, cables and base) that is needed to make access to satellite internet possible.

Currently, mobile network operator Safaricom, the leading player in the fixed and wireless internet category in the country, offers fixed home internet in most Kenyan urban areas at prices starting from Kshs 3,000.

It also offers wireless home internet through its 4G and 5G plans starting at Kshs 3,700 for a 200GB package at speeds of 3Mbps and Kshs 3,500 for a 300GB package at speeds of 10Mbps respectively. Both 4G and 5G wireless home plans require separate equipment (routers) whose pricing starts at Kshs 10,000 and Kshs 30,000 (Kshs 25,000 for the router and Kshs 5,000 for “delivery and installation”) respectively.

Other players in the Kenyan fixed internet space that would be disturbed by the entry of Starlink into the market include Zuku, Jamii Telecommunications (Faiba) and Liquid Telecom.

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