FCC's Ajit Pai doubts Elon Musk’s SpaceX broadband-latency claims

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While traditional satellite broadband generally suffers from latency of about 600ms, Elon Musk says that SpaceX's Starlink will offer "latency below 20 milliseconds, so somebody could play a fast-response video game at a competitive level." The Federal Communications Commission is not convinced that Starlink broadband network will be able to deliver the low latencies promised. As a result, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai is proposing limits on SpaceX's ability to apply for funding from the $16 billion rural-broadband program called the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund. ISPs can seek funding in census blocks where no provider offers home-Internet speeds of at least 25Mbps downstream and 3Mbps upstream. ISPs that aren't expected to provide latency below 100ms will be at a disadvantage because the FCC will prioritize low-latency networks when awarding funding. Pai's plan would put SpaceX and other satellite providers into the high-latency category, even though SpaceX says its latency will be much lower than 100ms



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