Starlink 想要在太空直接提供 5G 網路訊號讓地面手機使用

Hacker News 上看到 Starlink 打算跟 T-Mobile 合作,直接用衛星提供 5G 訊號讓地面手機使用:「SpaceX, T-Mobile to connect satellites to cellphones in remote areas (wsj.com)」,原報導在 WSJ 的「SpaceX, T-Mobile to Connect Satellites to Cellphones in Remote Areas」這邊,另外因為 paywall 的關係,可以在這邊讀。

會用二代衛星:

Mr. Musk said the service would use second-generation Starlink satellites that would be outfitted with large antennas that cover swaths of land that have no service. SpaceX has a pending application before the FCC to launch around 30,000 of the second-generation satellites over time.

在另外一篇報導「SpaceX and T-Mobile team up to use Starlink satellites to ‘end mobile dead zones’」裡面有提到更細一點,不是衛星電話,是目前一般的手機:

The service won’t require mobile users to get a new phone. Musk said in or after a natural disaster, even if all the cell towers are taken out, the planned service should work.

不過可以預期只會有很基本的服務 (大概確保通話與簡訊會通),針對緊急危難狀況會特別有幫助:

Mr. Musk said that the bandwidth would be limited and that the new satellite service wouldn’t supplant existing ground-based cellular services. “This is meant to provide basic coverage to areas that are completely dead,” he said.

翻了翻 wiki,目前 Starlink 第一代衛星的軌道高度是 340km 左右,好像還不確定二代衛星會在哪個高度...

Hacker News 上有蠻多人在算技術上的可行性,除了訊號強度外,衛星與地面相對速度比目前地面上的交通工具都快,都卜勒效應 (Doppler effect) 看起來也是個會影響很多的主題...

不過討論裡面有提到 2021 年就已經有其他商用公司在幹類似的事情,所以看起來不只是講講而已?應該是有些可能性:「Lynk demos global satellite connection for ordinary phones and prepares for commercial launch」。

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