12 Top Starlink Competitors As Of 2024

In the satellite internet industry, one name has emerged as a dominant force: Starlink. From rural communities seeking high-speed internet to businesses venturing into remote territories, Starlink aims to bridge the digital divide. 

According to the research firm Quality Space, Starlink generated revenue of $1.4 billion in 2022 and became profitable in 2023. 

In 2024, Starlink is expected to achieve $6.6 billion in annual revenue, up from almost zero just four years ago. They anticipate an EBITDA of $3.8 billion. With capital expenditure of roughly $3.1 billion, Starlink expects to have approximately $600 million in free cash flow this year. [1]

As of March 2024, Starlink operates over 6,000 small satellites in low Earth orbit, communicating with specific ground transceivers. They serve more than 2 million active customers spanning across 75 countries.

Amidst Starlink’s rise to prominence, a diverse array of competitors has emerged, all vying for their share of the satellite internet market. We’ve featured the top Starlink competitors, illuminating the possibilities and potential that lie beyond the horizon.

Did you know? 

The satellite internet industry, which was worth $4 billion in 2023, is expected to exceed $17.1 billion by 2028, growing at a CAGR of 33.7%. [2]

12. Astranis


Founded in 2015
Headquarters: California, United States
Total Funding: $553.5 million

Astranis builds small, cost-effective satellites to deliver high-speed internet connectivity to specific geographic regions. They mainly target regions with limited or unreliable internet infrastructure, such as rural and remote areas, as well as developing countries. 

According to the official website, the company has sold over $1 billion in satellite services over the past two years. Their major customers are telecom companies looking to expand their service and commercial enterprises operating in isolated areas. [3]

As of 2024, Astranis has a team of 300+ engineers, many with experience from tech giants such as Apple and SpaceX. To date, they have raised a total of $553.5 million from 47 investors, including Andreessen Horowitz, Venrock, BlackRock, and TriplePoint Capital. 

11. Sky Muster

Launched in 2015
Coverage: Australia
Combined Capacity: 185 Gigabits per second  

Sky Muster is a satellite internet service provided by National Broadband Network in Australia. It relies on two advanced satellites, Sky Muster I and Sky Muster II, launched in 2015 and 2016, respectively. 

These satellites operate in geostationary orbit, offering coverage to remote regions across Australia. They cover nearly 400,000 premises in remote and regional Australia, including stations, farms, and Indigenous communities. 

The Australian government invested approximately $1.33 billion to develop, launch, and establish the necessary infrastructure for the Sky Muster satellite service.

While Sky Muster has performed admirably over the past five years, it now faces stiff competition from Elon Musk’s Starlink service. According to a report from the AFR, Sky Muster’s customer base has decreased from 100,000 to 95,000, while Starlink asserts that it has gained 120,000 subscribers in Australia. [4]

10. Avanti Communications

Founded in 2002
Headquarters: London, United Kingdom
Total Funding: $55.1 million

Avanti Communications has been at the forefront of satellite technology innovation since its inception. In 2010, they launched the first British Ka-band satellite, HYLAS 1, and became the first satellite operator to offer Ka-band services across Europe and the UK. 

Today, it owns and operates a network of four high-throughput satellites and seven gateway earth stations, strategically positioned to deliver reliable satellite connectivity solutions in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. 

Their satellite fleet has witnessed impressive growth over the past three years — Their satellite capacity has tripled, and now they operate four satellites with a Ka-band capacity of 50 GHz. [5]

The company has recently transitioned from being solely a geostationary satellite operator to a global multi-orbit provider. Their vast network infrastructure allows them to meet various customers’ requirements, from secure communications solutions for government agencies to broadband internet access for rural communities. [6]

9. Iridium


Founded in 2001
Headquarters: Virginia, United States
Annual Revenue: $790.7 million (2023)

Iridium Communications is known for its constellation of Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites that offer voice and data connectivity services worldwide. 

It operates a constellation of 66 active satellites in LEO, forming a mesh network that provides global coverage across land, sea, and air. The constellation also includes nine in-orbit spares to ensure redundancy and continuity of service. 

The network utilizes L-band frequencies to communicate with users. These frequencies are highly resilient to weather and ensure reliable communications, even in challenging conditions on the ground, at sea, or in the air. [7]

In addition to voice and data communications services, Iridium also provides IoT solutions to track assets, monitor environmental conditions, and manage remote operations in industries such as agriculture, transportation, and energy. 

In 2023, the company reached a record revenue of $790.7 million, a 10% increase from 2022. Its net income rose to $15.4 million from $8.7 million in the previous year. Plus, it gained 1,999,000 billable subscribers, compared to 1,723,000 in 2022. [8]

8. Kuiper Systems

Starlink Competitors - Kuiper SystemsAnimation of Project Kuiper’s satellite constellation | Credit: Amazon

Founded in 2019
Headquarters: Washington, United States
Number of Employees: 1,400

Kuiper Systems is a subsidiary of Amazon dedicated to providing global satellite internet services through a constellation of 3,236 satellites in LEO. It has already received regulatory approval from the FCC to deploy satellites and provide internet services in the USA. [9]

Kuiper Systems is currently in the process of developing and launching its satellites. They’ve secured 92 rocket launches with renowned aerospace firms such as United Launch Alliance, Blue Origin, and ArianeGroup, amounting to $10 billion. They also plan to launch aboard SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket. [10]

The company is facing tough competition from other satellite internet providers, especially SpaceX’s Starlink and OneWeb. Its entry into the market is expected to further accelerate the deployment of satellite internet constellations and driver innovation in satellite technology. 

7. Geespace

Founded in 2018
Headquarters: Shanghai, China
Parent: Geely Holding

Geespace develops and deploys low-orbit satellites to offer high-precision positioning and connectivity services. It aims to upgrade China’s satellite industry chain and promote the commercial applications of China’s space technology. 

In 2022, the company launched nine satellites, and in 2024, they added eleven more. These satellites are part of the Geely Future Mobility Constellation, which comprises 240 satellites.  They serve a range of purposes, from logistics and maritime monitoring to remote sensing and satellite communication services. [11]

The company plans to establish global real-time data communication services by 2025. 

They have also developed a satellite-based AI cloud platform called OmniCloud. This platform aims to deliver high-precision positioning data for vehicles as well as a public transportation fleet management system. 

6. Inmarsat


Founded in 1979
Headquarters: London, United Kingdom
Total Funding: $1.8 billion

Inmarsat provides global mobile satellite communication services to users across various industries. This includes offering in-flight broadband internet and cockpit communications for the aviation industry, secure and resilient satellite communication services for government and defense agencies, and maritime communication solutions tailored to the needs of commercial shipping. 

The company operates a constellation of geostationary satellites that support both broadband and L-band services. They leverage advanced satellite technology like high-throughput satellites and Global Xpress network to deliver reliable, secure, and high-speed communication services. 

In 2011, Inmarsat purchased Ship Equip, a provider of broadband and IP services designed for the maritime market, for $159.5 million. Two years later, in 2013, they acquired Globe Wireless, a mobile satellite communications company, for $45 million. [12]

In 2019, Inmarsat secured $1.8 billion in a post-IPO debt round from Apax Partners. As of 2023, their annual revenue reached $1.5 billion. With a workforce of nearly 1,500 employees, their revenue-per-employee ratio stands at $976,667. [13]

5. Telesat

Founded in 1969
Headquarters: Ontario, Canada
Annual Revenue: $704 million (2023)

Telesat operates a fleet of advanced satellites in geostationary orbit and is actively expanding its presence in the low Earth orbit satellite market. It currently operates 198 LEO satellites that are seamlessly integrated to provide coverage across the Americas, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and the Asia Pacific region. 

In 2023, Teleset generated $704 million in annual revenue, a 7% decrease from the previous year. This decline was primarily attributed to price reductions upon renewing a long-term agreement with North American DTH customers.

During the same period, their net income amounted to $583 million, while operating expenses totaled $205 million.

In September 2023, Telesat entered into an agreement with SpaceX to launch 18 new satellites through 14 launches, scheduled to commence in 2026. [14]

4. HughesNet

Founded in 1969
Headquarters: Ontario, Canada
Number of Subscribers: $978 million (2024)

HughesNet is a subsidiary of Hughes Network Systems, a leading firm in satellite communications technology and services. It offers high-speed broadband connectivity to residential and commercial users across the US and selected regions in North America. 

The company operates a fleet of geostationary satellites, utilizing Ka-band satellite technology to deliver high-speed internet access.

However, its popularity has decreased in the past couple of years.  In late 2023, HughesNet had over a million subscribers in the Americas, down from 1.4 million in early 2022. [15]

In contrast, SpaceX’s Starlink is rapidly gaining market share. By December 2022, it had surpassed 1 million subscribers, reaching 1.5 million subscribers by May 2023 and exceeding 2 million subscribers by September 2023. Starlink ended 2023 with over 2.3 million subscribers worldwide, with the majority located in the US.

3. Viasat

Founded in 1986
Headquarters: California, United States
Annual Revenue: $3.79 billion  

Viasat provides satellite internet, networking, and other connectivity solutions to residential, commercial, military, and government agencies. It operates a fleet of geostationary satellites, including WildBlue1, Anik-F2, ViaSat-1, ViaSat-2, and ViaSat-3. 

Since these GEO satellites have a latency of over 600 ms, over 10 times more than LEO satellites, they are much less competitive for applications like video gaming or videoconferencing. Still, the company has been doing great in all other areas. 

In 2023, Viasat purchased Inmarsat for $7.3 billion. This acquisition provided scale and revenue diversification while accelerating Viasat’s evolution from a regional operator to a leading global mobility services company. [16]

Viasat is set to launch 8 new Ka-band broadband satellites by 2025, including an additional two ViaSat-3 satellites. One of the eight satellites, I-6 Flight 2, has already been launched and is currently in orbit-raising.

According to their latest financial report, they have achieved $3.79 billion in annual revenue, compared to $2.59 billion in 2022 and $2.49 billion in 2021. In 2023, Viasat achieved a record 2,230 commercial In-flight connectivity (IFC) aircraft in service, up 22% compared to the previous year. [17]

They also reached a significant connectivity milestone in Brazil, with over 60,000 sites in operation, serving more than 11 million Brazilians. This includes over 26,000 internet access points for schools, health posts, and public service facilities.

2. OneWeb

Starlink alternatives - OneWeb

Founded in 2012
Headquarters: London, United Kingdom
Total Funding: $4.7 billion

OneWeb operates a constellation of 634 LEO satellites, positioned at altitudes of approximately 1,200 kilometers above the Earth’s surface, transceiving in the Ku-band radio frequency. 

Like SpaceX’s Starlink, OneWeb’s LEO satellite architecture helps minimize latency, enabling faster response times and enhanced performance compared to geostationary satellite systems. 

OneWeb has already secured contracts with multiple organizations and government agencies to provide satellite-based communication services for defense, emergency response, and public safety applications. [18]

So far, the company has raised a total of $4.7 billion through 9 rounds, with the latest funding round occurring in August 2021. It is backed by 17 investors, including Softbank, Bharti Enterprises, Eutelsat, and Hanwha Systems. [19]

1. Certain Governments and Astronomers 

It is not only the private space companies SpaceX will have to compete with. Several countries have expressed concerns related to Starlink services. Among them, the most notable is the Russian government. 

Russian officials have cited security concerns, fearing that the use of foreign satellite internet services could compromise national security and bypass the nation’s internet controls and surveillance mechanisms. [20]

In 2022, the European Commission announced plans for a $6.6 billion satellite internet system to compete with the likes of SpaceX’s Starlink and Amazon’s Kuiper Systems. The EU hopes the proposed constellation could be up and running by 2028. [21]

Starlink also brings concerns from different scientific communities. Astronomers are worried about the light pollution affecting their observations, environmental scientists are concerned about the potential climatic impact of burning satellites in the upper atmosphere, and spaceflight safety experts are anxious about increased collision risks. [22][23][24]

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Sources Cited and Additional References

  1. Eric Berger, Analyst on Starlink’s rapid rise: “Nothing short of mind-blowing”, ArsTechnica
  2. Satellite Internet Market, Satellite Internet market by orbit, connectivity, vertical, frequency, speed, and region, Market and Market 
  3. Homepage, Astranis has sold more than $1 billion in satellite services over the past two years, Astranis
  4. Lucas Baird, Musk’s Starlink grows 20pc since Feb, charges past NBN satellite users, The Australian Financial Review
  5. Technology, Ka-Band Satellite Communications, Avanti
  6. Jason Rainbow, Avanti in LEO talks to become a multi-orbit connectivity provider, Space News
  7. Network, Perfectly in sync, while traveling more than 30,000 kilometers per hour, Iridium 
  8. Investor Relations, Iridium announces 2022 results; Company issues 2023 outlook, Iridium
  9. Project Kuiper, Project Kuiper aims to increase broadband access through a constellation of 3,236 satellites in LEO, Amazon
  10. Eric Berger, Jeff Bezos and Amazon just hired everybody but SpaceX for Project Kuiper, ArsTechnica
  11. Homepage, Aerospace technology leads the intelligent world, GeeSpace
  12. Company Overview, Inmarsat financials and funding rounds, Crunchbase
  13. Company Overview, Inmarsat’s annual revenue, Zippa
  14. Clyde Hughes, Telesat, SpaceX announce agreement to launch satellites, SpaceDaily
  15. Rachel Jewett, Hughes Jupiter-3 satellite pushed to early 2023, EchoStar explores potential acquisitions, SatelliteToday
  16. Cases, Viasat’s $7.3 Billion Acquisition of Inmarsat Receives Unconditional Clearance in all Global Jurisdictions, CompassLexecon
  17. Annual Report FY-23, A letter to shareholders from Mark and Guru, Viasat
  18. News Release, LVM3 M2 / OneWeb India-1 mission, ISRO
  19. Company Overview, OneWeb financials and funding rounds, Crunchbase
  20. Michael Kan, Russia makes veiled threat to destroy SpaceX’s Starlink, PCmag
  21. Robert Lea, Europe wants its own satellite mega constellation to compete with SpaceX Starlink, Space
  22. Elizabeth Gamillo, Starlink satellites are disrupting cosmic studies, Astronomy
  23. Fionagh Thomson, Spacecrafts burning in the upper atmosphere: what consequences on climate?, International Science Council
  24. Wei Zhang, Self-induced collision risk of the Starlink constellation based on long-term orbital evolution analysis, Springer
Written by
Varun Kumar

I am a professional technology and business research analyst with more than a decade of experience in the field. My main areas of expertise include software technologies, business strategies, competitive analysis, and staying up-to-date with market trends.

I hold a Master's degree in computer science from GGSIPU University. If you'd like to learn more about my latest projects and insights, please don't hesitate to reach out to me via email at [email protected].

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