SpaceX just asked to launch 4,400 satellites to create high-speed space internet

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Nov 18, 2016, 12:07 PM EST

Along with colonizing Mars, SpaceX also has a few other cool projects in the works. One of the most fascinating? An enormous undertaking to beam internet down to the entire globe.

The Washington Post reports the space firm has requested permission from the Federal Communications Commission to launch a mind-boggling 4,400 satellites to blanket the Earth with high-speed internet. The company needs regulatory approval to use the wireless airwaves that would run the whole operation. If all goes as planned, it’d start with the launch of 800 satellites. SpaceX says the system could provide speeds up to 1 gigabit per second, per user, which is blazingly fast.

“The system is designed to provide a wide range of broadband and communications services for residential, commercial, institutional, governmental and professional users worldwide,” according to SpaceX. “Once fully deployed, the SpaceX System will pass over virtually all parts of the Earth’s surface and therefore, in principle, have the ability to provide ubiquitous global service.”

The implications are obviously huge. Providing reliable internet service is one of the biggest challenges in the developing world, and SpaceX’s $10 billion proposal could solve a lot of them. There’s obviously still a lot of ground (or space) to cover, but this could be huge over the next several years.

(Via The Washington Post)