back to article Amazon aims to launch prototype broadband internet satellites by Q4 2022 – without Bezos' Blue Origin

Amazon hopes to launch two prototype satellites into low Earth orbit by the end of 2022 as part of Project Kuiper – its $10bn effort to provide a commercial satellite broadband service that will compete with SpaceX’s Starlink constellation. The two birds – dubbed KuiperSat-1 and KuiperSat-2 – are intended to put Amazon’s space …

  1. Snapper

    Oh right!

    Just what we need, loads more junk in space!

    1. thondwe

      Re: Oh right!

      Yep - Musk's boxes are already annoying me and I've only had a proper scope for a month AND I don't do astro-photography - plus DD - "meteor!" - nope - satellite...

      If a) they were dark and b) powers that been said you can launch these things, providing you take another piece of space junk out of orbit at the same time...

      1. xyz Silver badge

        Re: Oh right!

        I live off grid in the woods (in europe) and I'm holding out for starlink in 2022. Sorry you're telescoping is toasted by my selfish desire to get an internet connection, but my current options are zero and musky's mini birds seem like my salvation. Old satellite offerings are hobbled by dodgy sales fiends, I can't plug into the fibre cable a km from my gaff and there is no mobile signal to boost. Ok, a Dishy McFlatface may consume 100w an hour (and therefore I need more batteries) but at least I can work 21st century style.

        1. Geoff Campbell Silver badge
          Thumb Up

          Re: Oh right!

          I've had Starlink running here for a few months. You're going to love it.

          I've not done proper measurements, but a quick eye-balling of the electricity bills and smart meter data looks to me like the average consumption over time is less than 100w. I can't detect significant difference in my bills, which a solid continuous 100w should have increased by a good 10%.


          1. xyz Silver badge

            Re: Oh right!

            Thanks for the info, that should save me a bob or 2.

            Oh... Dear Telescopiteers,

            I understand that there are various professional organisations who do that space stuff and have pictures... Here's the address of one of them... I'm baffled as to why you think you'll get better tesults from your garden shed unless of course you're looking for Nibiru or something with NCC 1701 written on it. Mind youI've never been a fan of paraffin heaters, tin mugs of tea and radio 4 on the witeless so who am I to judge.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Oh right!

          Yeah, I have a friend a bit further south in Norway who was waiting for a StarLink order to be fulfilled.

          Up until a month ago that is when the local fibre company finally started rolling out service in his area. (Until then his only options were 3mb phone line or 4G.) The only catch was he had to dig his own trench through the neighbouring farmer's field to get the cable laid.

          He was anxiously watching said farmer plough the aforementioned field last week praying he'd dug deep enough. I haven't heard from him since for some reason...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Oh right!

      oh, stop being sanctimonious! Obviously nobody (remember Spanish inquisition) 'needs' more junk in space. We don't even 'want' more junk in space. We need and want less junk in space, honest! BUT, being the usual (...) hypocrites we are, we prefer to look at the rather more... appealing aspects of the 'junk in space' story. We WANT cheaper / faster / always-on connection so we can feed this fear of missing out anytime, anywhere on this piece of rock, and, swipe and upload that photo and check this thread and shit-my-boss-is sending-me-yet-another-pointless-email-missive-fart-on-Friday night! So, mumble-mumble-green-eco-climate-recycle-mumble-mumble, YES, here's my card, and my speed is faster than yours and my letancy 0.03% better too, here're my stats! :(

      1. Blank Reg

        Re: Oh right!

        We really need to limit space junk to what is really needed as getting rid of it is very hard. And the more we put up there the bigger the chance of some collision creating even more space junk, which can then cascade into even more collisions and even more space junk, rinse, lather, repeat.

        In the worst case we get so much space junk that it won't be safe to fly through it

        1. Geoff Campbell Silver badge

          Re: Oh right!

          Who decides what is really needed?


  2. Pen-y-gors


    Amazon was given the green light by the FCC to eventually launch a constellation of 3,236 of the satellites. It has until July 30, 2026 to launch 50 per cent of its fleet, and until July 30, 2029 to launch the other half

    And if they fail to meet their target? What then? Do they have to de-orbit all the ones they did launch? If not, what's the point of the requirements?

    Soon we won't need streetlights - the billionaires' satellites will make everywhere as bright as day.

    1. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

      Re: Timetable?

      I suspect what that means is "You can launch up to 1,618 between now and 30/7/2026 and up to another 1,618 between then and 30/7/2029. Any you don't launch within these timeframes remain grounded." If they only manage 1,000 before the first deadline, that's their lot and the remaining 618 can't be moved to the second window.

  3. Pen-y-gors


    Is that 400 Mbps total bandwidth on the satellite or 400Mbps for every one of the 10 million people using each satellite?

    What's that Skippy? They can't support that many users? So the night sky will be destroyed for a handful of people in the US outback?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Bandwidth?

      someone did the maths on musky's starlink hype bollocks:

  4. wolfetone Silver badge

    With Each Passing Day

    Wall-E becomes less of a fantasy Disney movie, and more of a harbinger of the future.

  5. Mike 137 Silver badge

    "...see how well the equipment communicates with Amazon's custom-built terminals on Earth"

    So another ferocious data slurper aims to enter the connectivity space.

  6. elsergiovolador Silver badge


    Imagine what our SMEs could come up with if they were able to pay as much tax as Amazon.

  7. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    So they're paying to put two sats in space

    Only to de-orbit them after testing ?

    Are they swimming in cash ?

    You put the sats up, you test and then you start exploiting.

    Kids these days . . .

  8. Sean o' bhaile na gleann

    If you don't already know about the site, take a look at at .

    Kinda puts things into perspective...

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Kinda puts things into perspective

      A false perspective, that is. Of course the sky is going to look crowded when each dot is the size of a small industrial city.

    2. DiViDeD

      Satellite Map

      If you eant to get even more disconcerted, try Stuff In Space, which doesn't restrict itself to satellites.

      There is, as they say in the engineering trades, a metric shit ton more than just satellites out there

  9. jdiebdhidbsusbvwbsidnsoskebid Silver badge

    Is it actually worth it?

    If starlink already has 1000 satellites in orbit, has anyone analysed if there is any net benefit yet in this type of system?

    Sure, anyone who has bought a subscription and is now getting network access that they didn't have before has certainly benefited, as an individual. SpaceX are clearly benefittng, as are all the financial investors and the people who work there and have a job as a result. But looking at society as a whole, is the cost/benefit paying off yet? If not, will it ever?

    I'm not sure how one would actually do that analysis fairly. For instance, how do you compare the environmental damage with the benefit of broadband? Also, how do you compare the benefit of someone in a rich nation getting broadband with someone in a poor nation getting it?

    What we really need is an external, independent auditor to do that analysis, and rule on whether we should be allowed to continue with this sort of thing. Problem is, what if those independent auditors from the Galactic Hyperspace Planning Council do a thorough job and rule against the human race as a whole?

    1. ortunk

      Re: Is it actually worth it?

      Sorry after a stern refusal by a local sheriff in some hilltop, earth is no longer part of Hyperspace Council

    2. Wormy

      Re: Is it actually worth it?

      Nice thing is, Starlink benefits the poor nations at least as much as the rich, maybe more. In right nations, the majority of people already have high speed internet in some fashion. In poor nations (I'll use Haiti as an example) a 4Mbps fiber connection can cost something like $200USD/month from Natcom. Starlink means that a clinic (for example) can upgrade from 4Mbps to 100+ Mbps while halving their costs, and have sufficient bandwidth to video conference with medical facilities in the US about patients they're seeing. It means schools can have enough bandwidth that maybe they can teach computer classes.

      There are a huge number of benefits from a system like Starlink to developing nations.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Is it actually worth it?

      God-Emperor Elon the 1st is clearly just using the connectivity argument to put up several thousand pieces of orbital hardware. Before anyone realises it, he will have globe spanning satellite system. When somebody then doesn't do as they are told he can just de-orbit one down on their head.

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