According to Ars Technica, home internet provider Starry now has the bandwidth to offer service to 40 million households in over 25 U.S. states.
In order to get to this level, the company paid $48.5 million on 104 spectrum licenses in the Federal Communications Commission’s recent 24GHz auction. The licenses will cover 25 million homes in different parts of 25 different states, and will provide about 200MHz worth of spectrum in each market, Ars Technica says.
Aside from increased internet coverage, the company claims it will save decision makers money in the long run: “Starry says it imposes no data caps and that the $50 monthly charge includes all taxes, fees, and equipment costs. It’s “commitment-free” with “no long-term contracts,” according to Ars Technica, citing Starry’s ISP.
The company is also pro-net neutrality and privacy principles, and claims that its network management practices work on “real-time network congestion,” and “the parts of the network impacted by the congestion.”
More coverage, but less reach?
While the Starry’s pilot, which was launched in Boston in 2016, has done exceptionally well and is continuing to grow, its availability is limited. For example, Ars Technica says that the company wants to “build its network out to all markets where it won 24GHz spectrum,” but it didn’t say how long it will take to get there.
Similarly, Starry’s earlier implementations have been within multi-unit buildings located in cities, which may house numerous “homes.” As a result, the 40 million households it aims to service won’t necessarily reach 40 million individual buildings. Starry also told Ars Technica that its services don’t work well in more rural areas “where houses are miles apart,” meaning those who live in the suburbs and rural communities more than likely won’t be able to benefit from the network.
On the plus side, Starry told Ars Technica that it does plan to offer its services to smaller towns in the U.S., and will eventually pilot for single-family homes later this year.