If SpaceX and other satcos are rejected from the low-latency category, they will be at a disadvantage in the upcoming Rural Digital Opportunity Fund. The reverse auction, set to begin October 29, will distribute $16 billion yearly, over ten years. The auction will give internet service providers (ISPs) funding to deploy broadband in census blocks where no provider offers home-internet speeds of at least 25 mbps downstream and 3 mbps upstream.
The FCC will prioritize low-latency networks when awarding funding, so
SpaceX and other low-earth orbit providers could come up short against
terrestrial networks, reports Ars Technica. SpaceX has said the
FCC's skepticism is unwarranted, telling the agency its Starlink
broadband system "easily clears the commission's 100 [milliseconds]
threshold for low-latency services, even including its 'processing time'
during unrealistic worst-case scenarios." Continue Reading