Elon Musk’s satellite unit SpaceX established a subsidiary in India named Starlink Satellite Communications, with plans to ultimately launch a broadband service in the country.

Starlink is the satellite internet division of SpaceX, which operates a fleet of Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites.

Sanjay Bhargava, Starlink’s country director for India, explained in a LinkedIn post the 100 per cent subsidiary was incorporated on 1 November.

“We can now start applying for licences, open bank accounts, et cetera.”

The global broadband satellite segment is due to become even more competitive, with Amazon yesterday (1 November) unveiling plans to launch its first prototype internet satellites as part of its Project Kuiper broadband constellation by Q4 2022.

Rajeev Badyal, VP of technology for Project Kuiper, stated it had “invented lots of new technology to meet our cost and performance targets”.

“All of the systems are testing well in simulated and lab settings, and we’ll soon be ready to see how they perform in space.”

SpaceX and rivals OneWeb, Lynk Global and AST SpaceMobile have been actively looking to forge deals with operators, with the Musk-backed company reportedly eyeing Vodafone UK to expand its broadband service.

OneWeb, a rival satellite play backed by the UK government and Bharti Enterprises, is partnering with BT on a trial.

Lynk Global revealed its first commercial agreements with operators in September, with AST SpaceMobile signing a deal with Philippines-based Smart Communications in July.