American eCommerce giant Amazon is seeking permission from US communications regulators to launch more than 4,500 additional satellites as part of its plan to bring high-speed Internet access to areas across the world that lacks the services.
According to the eCommerce giant, it planned to spend at least $10 billion to build 3,236 such satellites through its Project Kuiper program.
As per the reports, the company asked the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for approval to deploy a total of 7,774 satellites for the project. Recently, Amazon asked the FCC for permission to launch and operate two prototype satellites by the end of 2022.
Amazon said in its filing “the satellites will serve households, hospitals, businesses, government agencies, and other organizations around the world, including in geographic areas where reliable broadband remains lacking.”
“Although connectivity has improved on a global basis, only 51 percent of the global population, and 44 percent of the population of developing countries, are online,” the company added.
The FCC approved the Project Kuiper plan for a constellation of low-Earth orbit satellites in 2020, to compete with Mr. Elon Musk’s SpaceX’s Starlink network.
As per the reports, “Amazon founder Mr. Jeff Bezos and Mr. Musk are rivals in the private space launch business. Bezos’ Blue Origin had challenged the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s decision to award a $2.9 billion lunar lander contract to SpaceX but a judge rejected the challenge.” SpaceX has deployed more than 1,700 satellites.
Earlier this week, the FCC approved Boeing’s application to launch and operate 147 satellites to offer high-speed broadband internet access. Boeing first filed with the FCC in 2017 seeking permission to deploy a V-band Constellation of mostly low-Earth orbit satellites.