SpaceX’s Gen 3 satellite receiver dish just became available for purchase directly through Starlink without needing an invite. But there’s a catch – it currently requires signing up for the pricier Roam mobile tier with a steeper $150 monthly subscription.
Dubbed “Gen 3” and costing $599, the same as previous dishes, this upgraded model boasts Wi-Fi 6 router integration with dual ethernet ports, also sheds the motorized rotating mechanism in favor of a flat, kickstand-propped orientation for broader coverage.
SpaceX designed the Gen 3 hardware as a “high performance solution for consumers” but hasn’t detailed exactly how much faster it may be. And with Roam plan fees exceeding the residential $90-$120 tier pricing, some existing subscribers are hesitant to bite despite interest in upgraded equipment.
The good news is the Gen 3 dish now sells subscription-free as a standalone purchase option for current users looking to upgrade. However you’ll need to change subscription levels to enable it, at least initially.
Here’s how it works – residential subscribers can buy the new hardware but must then switch to the Roam tier and its increased $150 monthly cost. The Business tier works too but jumps pricing to a daunting $250 per month minimum.
In essence, SpaceX is prioritizing – and incentivizing – adoption of its mobile-friendly packages by bundling the hardware perk. For less nomadic customers unwilling to accept the price hike, your only option is keeping the status quo equipment.
It’s a bit of a Raw Deal for early residential backers hoping to upgrade on existing terms. But the strategy makes sense as SpaceX pushes satellite internet across wider swaths of society. Increasingly versatile hardware coupled with premium mobility-centric pricing may just achieve that goal.
Hopefully down the road SpaceX uncouples the Gen 3 hardware from higher tier plans, granting residential users enhanced technology without financial penalties. Because while the new dish itself may be geared for smooth operation virtually anywhere, its upfront costs are tougher to stomach for subscribers firmly fixed in place!