Starlink, to set up an ethernet connection, requires subscribers to purchase its dedicated adapter. Luckily, I just did that. 😃
In this article, I’ll detail why you’d need Starlink’s Ethernet Adapter, how much it costs, where it can be bought, how to install it, and what I think of it.
Why Would You Need An Ethernet Adapter?
The Starlink Ethernet Adapter is engineered to facilitate a wired Internet connection by directly linking a device to the Starlink router.
Alternatively, you can also use the adapter to bypass the Starlink router and set up a connection with a third-party router.
An Ethernet adapter that enables a wired connection to a device can offer several advantages over a traditional Wi-Fi connection:
- Stability: Wired connections are typically more reliable and less subject to interference than Wi-Fi.
- Speed: Ethernet often provides faster data transfer, particularly useful for large data activities like streaming or gaming.
- Security: Wired data transmission is generally more secure, reducing the risk of data interception.
- Latency: Wired connections usually have lower latency, essential for time-sensitive activities like online gaming or video calls.
The last point, namely reducing latency, is particularly important given that Starlink already suffers from comparatively higher latency versus fiber.
However, keep in mind that Starlink’s latency is substantially better compared to GEO satellite internet services like HughesNet or ViaSat.
Nonetheless, minimizing every bit of ping is crucial in activities such as online gaming and video conferencing where a smoother, lag-free experience can significantly enhance the experience.
Starlink claims that the Ethernet Adapter can support speeds of up to 1 Gbps. Unfortunately, most Starlink users, even when using more performant third-party routers while living in areas with excess capacity, will rarely surpass 500 Mbps.
How Much Does The Ethernet Adapter Cost?
The price of the Starlink Ethernet adapter varies depending on where you live. This is how much Starlink charges in the following countries:
- United States: USD 25
- Australia: AUD 60
- Canada: CAD 45
- Germany/France/Spain: EUR 40
- Japan: YEN 10,400 (~ USD 74.2)
The adapter is manufactured in China (see picture below) but likely shipped in bulk to the United States.
From there, it is sent out to consumers in either of Starlink’s 50+ markets – either directly or via local distribution centers. As a result, prices in the US tend to be the lowest for Starlink accessories.
Lastly, those who order a High Performance Starlink antenna, which costs USD 2,500, will receive the Ethernet Adapter as part of their delivery.
Where To Buy The Starlink Ethernet Adapter
You can purchase the Ethernet Adapter within Starlink’s online shop, which you can access via a browser or the mobile app.
When on your browser, navigate to your account portal and log in with your username and password. Then, click on the SHOP link at the top of your screen.
Simply scroll down until you find the Ethernet Adapter and click on the listing. You should now be met with the Adapter’s product page looking something like this:
Again, keep in mind that the price will vary depending on the country of your registered service address. I’m based in Germany, hence why I paid EUR 40 for the adapter.
Click on ADD TO CART and then CHECKOUT NOW. Lastly, select PLACE ORDER to complete the order process.
Starlink should have your payment information and address saved, so you can lean back and wait until the adapter arrives. Shipment time in most markets should be less than 7 days.
Lastly, you can track the status of your shipment back in the account portal under the YOUR ORDERS section (pictured above).
With the app, click on the human icon located on the top right. You’ll land on your account page from where you select SHOP.
Again, navigate towards the Ethernet Adapter listing, add it to your card, and complete the checkout process.
How To Set Up The Starlink Ethernet Adapter
In the following section, I’ll highlight how to connect the Starlink Ethernet Adapter to the Starlink Router as well as your laptop/PC.
With that said, the process to connect to a third-party router should be fairly similar – except for the fact that you first need to bypass the original router.
Moreover, the tutorial is only applicable to those with a Gen2 dish, which is rectangular and not circular (like the one pictured below). That’s because the Gen1 router boasted an ethernet port.
So, without further ado, let’s get started. First, unpack the Ethernet Adapter. You’ll be presented with the adapter as well as an instruction card depicting how to connect all pieces involved.
Next, disconnect your Starlink kit from electricity by unplugging the router’s power cable (located on the right bottom side).
Furthermore, remove the 50 ft cable adapter that’s connected to your antenna. In its place, insert the Ethernet Adapter. Make sure it clicks, which signifies that it’s fully inserted.
Now, insert the 50 ft cable into the other end of the Ethernet Adapter and insert the power cable back into the router, which will boot up your antenna again.
You can now insert an ethernet cable of your choice into the adapter as well as the hardware of your choice (laptop, TV, gaming console, PC, etc.).
Et voilà, you should now be wirelessly connected to the internet.
First and foremost, I think that Starlink’s Ethernet Adapter does what it’s supposed to. Starlink’s products often have an Apple feel to them in that they’re beautifully designed and easy to use.
Speed-wise, I’ve seen a slight uptick in download performance of about 10 percent. Latency has obviously improved as well.
Being located in Germany, where speed issues aren’t really that prevalent, using the Ethernet Adapter has mostly been beneficial in reducing my ping when gaming.
With that said, I do question the motive behind removing the ethernet port from the Gen1 hardware set.
While most people likely don’t connect to the internet via an ethernet cable, it did not take up that much space, to begin with. It does feel like that SpaceX simply wanted to find another way to monetize its loyal user base.
Nonetheless, Starlink’s Ethernet Adapter is overall a great product that does what it’s supposed to without any noticeable issues.
I’d recommend it to anyone wanting to maximize their performance and uptime, especially if you’re located in an area with limited capacity.