O2 is now using Starlink satellites to provide mobile coverage

By Adrian Vincent - 1 Jun 2024, 16:32 O2 Starlink

O2 is beginning to utilise Starlink’s Low Earth Orbit satellites to provide mobile coverage throughout remote parts of the UK.

Starlink, a subsidiary of the Elon Musk founded SpaceX, uses low orbit satellites to provide internet connectivity across the globe. The constellation of satellites can provide internet access to even the most remote locations of Earth.

Previously, O2 experimented with Starlink technology in the Scottish Highlands. After several months of trials, O2 appears confident enough to expand the technology to other remote parts of the UK.

O2 won’t be harnessing Starlink Direct to Cell technology, which connects mobile phones directly to Starlink satellites for data and signal. Instead, O2 will be connecting their phone masts directly to Starlink satellites.

The technology will be used primarily in remote and rural areas, where it’s generally unfeasible and costly to lay traditional fibre optic cables.

O2’s efforts to utilise Starlink technology is part of the UK government’s Shared Rural Network, which was developed to provide better mobile coverage to rural areas across the UK. The scheme involves a £1 billion partnership between the 4 major UK networks, including O2, EE, Vodafone and Three.

EE reportedly started talks with Starlink to harness their technology earlier this year, however no public announcement between the two companies has yet come to fruition.

About the author Adrian Vincent

As the founder and senior editor at CompareDial, Adrian Vincent is a renowned expert in all things related to mobile phones, and is particularly knowledgeable when it comes to helping consumers find the best contract deals. His expertise is widely recognised, with citations from leading news organisations and tech publications. Adrian is dedicated to guiding users through the complexities of the phone contract market, ensuring they receive unparalleled advice and secure the best value for their money.