Starlink, via its newly created Twitter account, just announced that it is now available in all of Panama.
The launch marks the 56th market that Starlink is now available in. Starlink has recently been expanding its footprint in the Central and South American region, launching in Haiti, Ecuador, and El Salvador through March and April.
A quick look at Starlink’s Availability Map indicates that the next shoes to drop are the Bahamas, Costa Rica, and Guatemala. The rest of Central and South America is likely going live sometime in 2024.
Meanwhile, customers located in Panama can take advantage of a temporary hardware discount, which is available until June 1st, 2023.
The Standard antenna can currently be purchased for US$250 instead of the US$538 Starlink plans to charge going forward. And here’s what Starlink charges for its consumer plans (you can also find them in our global price list):
- US$52/month for Residential
- US$64/month for Regional Roam
- US$215/month for Global Roam
- US$268/month for Mobile Priority (50GB version)
The launch in Panama has long been anticipated. Its Availability Map already hinted at a Q1 2023 launch for months.
Back in December 2022, Panama’s Autoridad Nacional de los Servicios Públicos (ASEP) had already granted Starlink a license to operate in the country.
“As of today, the SpaceX company Starlink begins operations in Panama. This innovative technology contributes to the multiple actions that our government promotes to expand connectivity and bring high-speed satellite internet to different areas of the country,” said Panamanian President Laurentino Cortizo in the above-mentioned tweet.
While Panama, with its ~ 4.3 million citizen, represents a somewhat limited opportunity, its lackluster internet infrastructure will certainly lead to widespread adoption.
Fiber internet access in the country oftentimes costs more than US$100 per month. Couple that with the nation’s comparatively high wealth compared its regional peers (e.g., GDP per capita of US$14.6k vs US$1.8k in Haiti) and there’s some money to be made.
The launch in Panama also came on the heels of aggressive customer acquisition initiatives. Starlink has greatly reduced prices in Europe, began selling at Home Depot and Best Buy, and introduced hefty hardware discounts in the UK or Canada.
All of those initiatives have enabled Starlink to surpass 1.5 million subscribers, making it the world’s most popular satellite-based internet provider. Sky may, after all, not even be the limit anymore.