Telesat Works to Take on Elon Musk in Internet Satellite Race

Three blue monitors.

Three blue monitors.

On Thursday, internet giant Telesat announced that it had picked Blue Origin’s New Glenn rocket to launch their internet satellites into space. Even with these large steps forward for Telesat and Blue Origin, there’s a dark cloud of competition from Elon Musk, who’s also working to launch internet satellites into space.

Telesat and Blue Origin

On the last day of January Blue Origin and Telesat announced that they’re working together to launch Telesat’s internet satellites into space. This is yet another win for the Amazon founder, Jeff Bezos, who happens to be one of Blue Origins investors.

Blue Origin’s New Glenn Rocket, the rocket picked to launch Telesat’s satellites, has a large payload capacity which, in the long run, will help lower the cost of launching the satellites. “This partnership, along with New Glenn’s selection by the U.S. Air Force for a launch services agreement,” Telesat CEO Bob Smith said, “gives New Glenn the opportunity to demonstrate its heavy-lift and volume capabilities to civil, commercial and national security customers when it begins launching in 2021.” [1]

A Future in Internet

Mobile Broadband services aren’t reaching around 14 million rural Americans according to FCC. There are satellites that provide internet; they focus largely on residential broadband connections. Telesat hopes to provide internet for both residential as well as mobile customers when it begins launching in 2021.

Unfortunately for Telesat and Blue Origin, other people see a future in launching internet satellites into space. Tesla’s CEO, Elon Musk, has a company, SpaceX, which is sending thousands of satellites to space. The company plans on launching over 4,000 internet satellites to space in 2019 alone. [2]


Notes:

  1. ^Haselton, Todd. “Jeff Bezos’ rocket company to help Telesat take on Elon Musk in internet satellite race.” CNBC, 31 Jan. 2019, www.cnbc.com/2019/01/31/blue-origin-rocket-will-launch-telesats-internet-satellites.html. (go back↩)
  2. ^Sheetz, Michael. “SpaceX launching its first test satellites to bring Internet to billions around the world.” CNBC, 18 Feb. 2018, www.cnbc.com/2018/02/17/spacex-testing-its-own-satellite-broadband-internet-network.html. (go back↩)

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