An Eau Claire County pilot program will test the viability of SpaceX Starlink satellites to expand high-speed internet access in rural areas. The $87,500 initiative will pay for equipment and a year’s worth of service fees for 50 households.
At a press conference Thursday, Gov. Tony Evers announced that the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. will contribute $27,500 to the Starlink pilot program.
Pilot participant Ron Perry owns Otter Creek Seeds and Service. He said he’s been relying on cellular data plans in order to get the internet speeds needed to run his business.
“With four phones, four iPads and the two routers, I was running about $1,000 a month for my business at home,” said Perry. “And with that price tag, we can understand why some of my neighbors kind of scoff at the idea of trying to pay for that kind of high speed internet.”
(Adapted from “Eau Claire County launching Starlink Broadband Access Initiative ,” Apr. 28, 2021, Wisconsin Public Radio)