Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Starry: The Future of Internet Connectivity?

MVI starryI have no use for horoscopes, but I suppose in this case one could argue that the future is in the stars. Starry, more specifically. Starry released its router, Starry Station, on February 5 and announced that it would begin beta testing its Internet service this summer in Boston. The router received mixed reviews, as some consider it overpriced and gimmicky  while others like the Health Score information and good customer service. Everybody thinks the price is too high, but that’s bound to come down eventually.  However, the router is just a piece of Starry’s master plan.

Chet Kanojia, Starry’s CEO, plans to build a wireless network that doesn’t require the expensive infrastructure most Internet providers use, which would allow Starry users to get Internet access for around $25 per month. The Starry Station doesn’t have any particularly enticing features now, but the plan is to release software in the future, most of which is connected to having the Starry network in place. Such as it is, the router itself is a simplified version of the average router, though reviews indicate that its speed is above average. Once the network is operational, it will use extremely high frequency radio waves (millimeter wave bands) to transmit signals at speeds around 1 gigabit per second. While the Starry Station isn’t necessary for the network to function, that router has been designed to accommodate the new network, so using both will probably maximize performance.Micro Visions Explores the Starry Station

Ideally, Starry will build Starry Beams, which will transmit the radio waves to Starry Points. These receivers would attach to windows and transmit signals to the Starry Station inside the home. If the company succeeds, it will compete with large Internet providers. However, Starry will have a few snags to contend with. Its high frequency waves can be disrupted by just about anything, including fog, and the company will have to install receivers everywhere for the network to function reliably. Supposedly, they have the technology and the knowledge to solve these problems, but we shall see. Or Boston residents will, anyway.

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