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Do NOT post your private starlink information and/or Billing information on this forum - There is 200% no need to post your private information for assistance.

Another speed issue.


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Hello, new poster here.  I've had my Starlink for about 10 months, and while it's WAY better than the 3Mbps DSL I had for the previous 8 years, I rarely get anywhere near the "possible" speed range.  Doesn't matter what time of day, day of the week, weather, etc. my speeds are typically no more than 35Mbps.  On maybe 3 occasions, it's bounced up over 100, but it's only for a few seconds.  I contacted support through the Starlink app, and got the usual standard suggestions, which I'd already gone through as posted on the Starlink web site.  Nothing improved things.

I also mentioned in my support request that I have reason to think that the Starlink terminal I received may have been a used system.  (Box was taped only on the front, the tape on the sides was cut through; the 75' cable was merely stuffed into the box, not neatly coiled and secured with twist ties.)  Support failed to address this concern.

Anyone have suggestions for improving my speeds, other than the steps provided by Starlink support?

Thanks,
Jack

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@JcM,

Starlink does NOT guarantee any particular level of performance. See https://www.starlink.com/legal/documents/DOC-1400-28829-70?regionCode=US for the US version of the Starlink Specifications. First off, the speed examples provided in the Starlink Specifications are dependent on your SERVICE PLAN. The example for the Mobile service plan is 5-50Mbps which puts your reported speed in the top 30%. Secondly, if you read the paragraph entitled GENERAL EXCLUSIONS, you will see that almost anything could be the reason for not achieving the performance examples in the Specifications.

The fact that your Starlink Kit might have been used (refurbished) before you acquired it should not be an issue unless there is detectable damage (physical or electrical). Diagnosing any damage would require the cooperation of Starlink Support which is initiated with a support ticket, as you probably already know.

So, performance depends on a lot of things including, but not limited to:

  1. The country in which you are receiving service.
  2. Your Service Plan
  3. The distance to the nearest Ground station. 
  4. How congested is congested the Starlink network is in your area? This is something you can only guess at and is not necessarily a function of population density. I lived in a very rural part of New Mexico when I first joined Starlink. My nearest neighbors were "out of rifle range". However, Starlink informed me that usage in my area was high, adversely affecting the performance of my Starlink kit.
  5. Is your Dishy experiencing any obstructions. This can be checked in the Starlink mobile app.
  6. How many devices do you have on your network? 1? 2? 20?
  7. Are you doing anything that should be consuming more than 35Mbps? If so, what? File downloads? Speed tests? Streaming video? FWIW, streaming video, even at 4K, should not consume anything close to 35Mbps unless you are simultaneously streaming on several different devices.
  8. How are you measuring speed? The Starlink mbile app? Ookla Speed Test? Some other tool?

As for performance improvements, well, there could be some, but it's really hard to make any meaningful suggestion(s) without a great deal more detail. 

FWIW, for the first 10 months I had my Starlink kit, I struggled mightily to get anywhere near 35Mbps on a regular basis. Thank goodness, those days are gone.

 

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I did not ask for any guaranteed level of performance, just trying to get closer to possible speeds. I'm not on the Mobile service plan, I'm on the Standard, which shows a download speed range of 25 - 100Mbps.

The General Exclusions also has the statement "The Starlink Kit can and may be accessed by SpaceX to perform support actions, request limited diagnostic information, monitor performance, and provide research for improvement purposes."  I asked support to run these diagnostics, but there was no response to that either.  As far as the unit being used, sure, that does not mean it is defective, but it DOES make me wonder if it was a returned kit, and why was it returned?

As for your other questions:

1. USA

2. Standard Plan

3. Why does the distance to the ground station matter? My data is flowing from my location to and from the satellite(s), not to a ground station.

4. No idea about congestion, but frankly, considering the kit and service cost, I doubt that there are a lot of users in my area.  However, as with any other Internet service, I realize there are times of higher use (kids are home from school) and times of lower use (kids are in school) which is why I've run the speed test multiple times a day, and at all hours of the day.

5. The Starlink app reports some obstruction, but it's a very low percentage of operating time.  I'm not sure what the obstruction is, because Dishy has a very clear view of the sky to the north and NNE, where it is pointing.

6. I have multiple devices "on my network," however, there are only 2 people in my household; there are rarely more than 2 or 3 devices active at any given time; when I run a speed test, NO device is actively streaming anything.

7. No. Typical internet use is email, browsing, Amazon shopping, and occassional streaming. As I said above, NO streaming is happening when I run a speed test. I'll admit, these activities do not require 100's of MBps, but I'd like to get closer to the possible performance. Kind of like buying a car rated at 45 mpg, but then getting only 25. (I know, I know, YMMV.)

8. I use the Ookla tool. I've found that the Starlink app speed test often does not work; it simply does nothing when I try to run it.  I've ensured the app is the latest, and I've uninstalled and reinstaled several times.  I've tested from two different phones and a tablet with consistent results.

Yeah, I suppose one or two of those catch-all circumstances could affect me, but it seems to me that EVERY Starlink user might experience at least one of those.  Reading lots of reports online indicating many users are seeing speeds decreasing. I suppose I should just accept what I'm getting and move on.

You say you struggled to get 35Mbps, but "those days are gone." What changed for you?

 

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@JcM,

You wrote:

> 3. Why does the distance to the ground station matter? My data is flowing from my location to and from the satellite(s), not to a ground station.

Because your data which is flowing from your location to and from the satellite(s) is also being routed between the satellite and a ground station to get to the Internet. It's another piece of the puzzle.

> 7... but I'd like to get closer to the possible performance. Kind of like buying a car rated at 45 mpg, but then getting only 25. (I know, I know, YMMV.)

Actually, it's more like buying a vehicle that is capable of 200mph and driving it at 55mph (or 75mph) in traffic... 😉

> 8. I use the Ookla tool. I've found that the Starlink app speed test often does not work; it simply does nothing when I try to run it.

About 80% of the time, I have to run the Starlink app's speed test twice. The first time it states, "Speed test temporarily unavailable. Please try again later." However, tapping the "Try Again" button at the bottom of the screen immediately seems to work most of the time.

Ookla is one of the best out there. I also use a Mac app called Internet Speed Test by AppYogi. If you subscribe, you can set it to run a scheduled speed test on some interval (e.g., hourly). It will hang on to the results and you can get the accumulated results in a text file or, my favorite, a CSV file. VERY HELPFUL.

> 8...  I've tested from two different phones and a tablet with consistent results.

I hear you loud and clear. This eliminates a single device as the point of trouble.

> Reading lots of reports online indicating many users are seeing speeds decreasing.

Yes, many have reported decreasing speeds. However, as long as speeds are fast enough, I'm not sure this matters at the moment. Starlink is launching additional satellites on a very regular basis which, of course, increases capacity. However, demand of Starlink is growing at an even faster pace.

As Starlink Support has reminded me a couple of times, they are breaking new technological ground every day -- NO ONE HAS EVER DONE THIS BEFORE. So, there are going to be some "growing pains". 

>  I suppose I should just accept what I'm getting and move on.

Not necessarily. We all want more... more speed... more bandwidth... However, most -- not all -- Starlink customers have chosen to live in an area where there are few, if any, other Internet Service Providers that can provide real broadband-level service. My wife and I have DELIBERATELY chosen to live in rural America in our last three homes. Sure, we could move to the city and get fiber optic or 5G UWC service providing speeds 3x-10x faster than Starlink's possible speeds but... WE DON'T WANT TO LIVE IN THE CITY. PERIOD.

Anyway, I hope this has been helpful... and I hope Starlink's satellite launches make the service faster -- for all of us!

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Thanks, Ricochet.  My wife and I moved to a rural area from Florida for the same reason - sick of congestion.  When we were looking at properties, I always asked about available internet access. If none, we typically kept looking.  Where we eventually decided on, we were told that broadband was available from the local cable company.  OK, not fiber, but still quite usable.  Well, turns out I should have verified what we were told (my bad). The available "broadband" was AT&T DSL at 3Mbps.

Very coincidentally, I heard today that our development will be getting fiber sometime this year. The nearest ISP, Spectrum, got a federal grant to connect rural areas. As I've said before, "I'll believe it when I see it."

Jack

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12 hours ago, JcM said:

....Well, turns out I should have verified what we were told (my bad). The available "broadband" was AT&T DSL at 3Mbps.

Very coincidentally, I heard today that our development will be getting fiber sometime this year. The nearest ISP, Spectrum, got a federal grant to connect rural areas. As I've said before, "I'll believe it when I see it."

Same here on both points. The only available "broadband" is DSL from the local telephone company. FWIW, DSL no longer qualifies as "broadband" under the latest, industry-wide definitions that define a minimum speed of 25Mbps. 👀

We live between two small towns -- 2 miles from the town to the west and 7 miles from the town to the east. Spectrum is available in both towns. However, we are in "the dead zone". Reportedly, their technicians have been seen in our neighborhood eyeing telephone poles and report, "We might be bringing fiber into this neighborhood." I think that's urban legend... I still have to watch that awful Spectrum vs. T-Mobile commercial about 10 times each night on FreeVee... UGH.

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On 5/10/2023 at 8:57 AM, RicochetStarlink said:

Same here on both points. The only available "broadband" is DSL from the local telephone company. FWIW, DSL no longer qualifies as "broadband" under the latest, industry-wide definitions that define a minimum speed of 25Mbps. 👀

We live between two small towns -- 2 miles from the town to the west and 7 miles from the town to the east. Spectrum is available in both towns. However, we are in "the dead zone". Reportedly, their technicians have been seen in our neighborhood eyeing telephone poles and report, "We might be bringing fiber into this neighborhood." I think that's urban legend... I still have to watch that awful Spectrum vs. T-Mobile commercial about 10 times each night on FreeVee... UGH.

Well good luck to ya!

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