Amazon to launch over 3,000 satellites to provide global internet service
"This is a long-term project that envisions serving tens of millions of people who lack basic access to broadband internet," Amazon spokesperson Kinley Pearsall told Xinhua Friday.
It came after the Washington D.C.-based company Kuiper System filed to International Telecommunications Union to put 3,236 satellites in low Earth orbit, including 784 satellites at an altitude of 590 kilometers, 1,296 ones at 610 kilometers and 1,156 satellites at 630 kilometers.
Amazon confirmed that Project Kuiper is part of its project, "a new initiative to launch a constellation of Low Earth Orbit satellites."
Those satellites would provide data coverage ranging in latitude from 56 degrees north to 56 degrees south. More than 90 percent of the world's population live in that area.
Amazon is the latest private company to join the race to provide internet access through a network of low-orbit satellites after SpaceX, OneWeb and Telesat. But Pearsall gave no specifics on its timeline.
SpaceX launched its first two prototype broadband data satellites. Its constellation is projected to grow to over 12,000 ones in low Earth orbit. ■