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Musk’s surprise visit to popular island

Musk’s surprise visit to popular island


Elon Must has officially touched down in Bali.

The tech billionaire made the surprise visit to the popular island on Sunday ahead of the launch of his broadband satellite internet service, Starlink.

It comes as Indonesia continues to level up its connectivity infrastructure nationwide, with the aim is to extend the internet to remote areas of the country.

Bali in particular, has become a home away from home for remote workers, entrepreneurs and freelancers who rely on speedy connections.

As such, officials have enlisted the tech mogul’s satellite internet service to help up its game, with a trial to take place in Nusantara, the future capital of Indonesia, for the first month, before a full-scale launch shortly after.

Nusantara is scheduled to be inaugurated on August 17, 2024, where it will replace Jakarta as the national capital.

Musk’s first time in Bali

Musk, who just made his first visit to the Southeast Asian nation, is scheduled to launch Starlink alongside President Joko Widodo at a clinic in Bali’s capital, Denpasar, on Sunday afternoon.

Maritime and Investment co-ordinating minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said Starlink “has the capability to reach even the most remote areas of Indonesia”.

“I had the opportunity to pick up Elon at the airport this morning and then discuss some of his agenda items while he’s here,” the minister wrote on his official Instagram account.

“One of them is the inauguration of Starlink internet service capable of reaching all corners of Indonesia.”

Mr Binsar Pandjaitan said through the availability of even internet access throughout the province, digitalisation in the implementation of healthcare and education in Indonesia can continue to improve.

“And best of all, communities living in remote areas can enjoy access to information and fast internet just as those living in urban areas.”

According to Luhut, Musk will also speak at the World Water Forum, which is currently being held on the holiday island.

Starlink is expected to have the most impact in remote regions where digital infrastructure is lagging behind.

According to Communications and Informatics minister Budi Arie, the service has been tested and will be required to operate in accordance with Indonesian law and local regulations and pay the correct frequency fees.

The Starlink monthly packages for residential use start at IDR 750,000 — that’s AU$70 — and global packages start at IDR 6,995,480 — $655. The standard Starlink unit will cost IDR 7,800,000 — about AU$730 — in Indonesia, The Bali Sun reports.

Starlink is already available in Malaysia and the Philippines.

The system is the world’s first and largest satellite constellation using a low Earth orbit to deliver broadband internet capable of supporting streaming, online gaming and video calls.

Over the past five years, SpaceX has launched more than 6,000 satellites in orbit, with over 2 million Starlink subscribers worldwide.


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