Starlink for RVs is Now Starlink Roam
So you’re thinking of hitting the open road, but…you can’t stream online movies and music, keep in touch with loved ones, or check in with your job via carrier pigeon?
Wait, what’s Starlink?
Starlink is SpaceX’s internet service project consisting of a constellation of satellites with the goal of providing internet service throughout the world…via space. What once sounded like something only from science fiction novels (or an eccentric billionaire’s pipe dream) is now a reality.
Though it’s been in development at SpaceX since 2015, the company increased its launches (pun intended) of satellites over the course of 2021; Starlink now boasts over 2,000 functional mini-satellites servicing over 40 countries worldwide with plans to add 40,000 or more satellites within the next decade. Transwest is one of the first companies authorized to provide the latest iteration of Starlink’s internet service, Starlink Roam.
Why Should Transwest Install Starlink in my RV?
Though any specifications you request on your RV are personal decisions based on your unique needs, we have five great reasons to have Transwest install Starlink in your RV:
1. Remote Location Internet Service
This is the most important aspect of Starlink Roam for most users. Starlink’s ultimate goal is to provide high-speed internet to the remotest areas of Earth, even those without ground infrastructure. It currently works via an array of mini-satellites distributed in low Earth orbit (LEO) throughout the layer of space just outside of Earth's atmosphere.
These mini satellites are significantly lower than other satellites (300-500 miles vs. 20,000 or more miles), but they are still in the same neighborhood of space where you’ll find the international space station (ISS) and traditional satellites. Starlink’s mini-satellites send internet signals down to ground transceivers (including your satellite dish), which then broadcast to your router, connecting you to the internet anywhere you have a clear view of the stars. This allows you to stream whatever you’re binging right into the comfort of your home-on-the-road, no matter where you are.
Starlink Roam is designed to be used in motion, and users can expect data speeds between 50 and 150 mbps most of the time. These speeds dramatically outshine all direct competitors and the spotty cellular service currently available in remote areas. And as Starlink grows its satellite array, you can predict better coverage and speed over time.
2. Immediate Availability
As Starlink satellite internet and RVs both become more popular, it's increasingly difficult to acquire the hardware for installation, even for retail users. However, since Transwest is a Starlink direct partner, they have units ready to install today. You can have your RV outfitted with Starlink’s high-speed internet without waiting in line or on an online waiting list. Since Transwest has the units in stock, our service technicians can get to work on your personal Starlink Roam installation as soon as you give the go-ahead.
3. Fast, Comprehensive Installation
Once you decide to install Starlink with Transwest, the installation itself takes a little over 4 hours, so you can have mobile internet in far less than a work day. Transwest’s trained service technicians will install the head unit, router, and power supply in a sleek configuration on and within your vehicle. It works immediately and looks sophisticated, and you will not need to lift a finger.
4. Virtual AND Physical Security
Public wifi networks leave users vulnerable to bad actors (hackers) and force them to authorize the use of their data for whatever reasons the provider requests in their terms of service. But since Starlink Roam is a contained system that gives you a direct connection to the satellite array, you won’t need to use public wifi networks. Connecting to the internet using Starlink nstead of a public wifi network provides an additional, private layer of protection between your data and the rest of the world.
You can also use Starlink to remotely monitor your RV via connected motion detection and cameras, improving your physical as well as virtual security.
5. Ease of Use
When Transwest completes your custom installation, your Starlink will calibrate itself and interface with the closest passing satellite. Starlink also boasts a mobile phone app that uses augmented reality to help you select a location and position your RV according to the orbit paths of the satellites.
Once installed, the Starlink mobile app helps you get an initial idea of possible interferences. After about 12 hours of uptime, it gains enough data to provide a comprehensive report, including the best position for your RV and how often to expect outages.
Does the Sky Have Limits?
Our resident expert Starlink user mentioned a few limitations. Since she and her husband both work from home, they needed continuous, high-speed internet access while working and traveling in the western US.
The biggest issue our experts noted was interruption in service, mostly due to trees. Yellowstone National Park, renowned for its large, contiguous empty skies, is a dream for Starlink service, as tree coverage is limited. By contrast, in the heavily wooded Pacific Northwest, our experts experienced short outages of 1-2 seconds every minute. Inclement weather, especially snow, may also interrupt service.
If you just want to stream movies and music and post your travel photos to social media, service interruptions may be so minor that you don’t even notice them. But if you need to make frequent calls, especially video calls, or require high-speed internet while trying to work on the go, service interruptions may be an issue for you when considering Starlink.
Starlink Data Cap
As of December 2022, Starlink imposes a soft data cap on users who exceed 1 TB of data per month. Usage between 11 PM and 7 AM does not count toward the cap, and users can purchase additional high speed internet for $0.25 per gigabyte or continue accessing the internet at slower speeds. Most RV Starlink users are unlikely to exceed this data cap, but it is something to be aware of.
Meet Your RV Internet Needs, Anywhere You Roam
Starlink is easy to set up and use, and it provides remote-area high-speed internet to most of the US. And when you are ready to stay connected on the road, Transwest is here to help install Starlink Roam in your RV.