Starlink internet service has quickly garnered the attention of the general public, especially in rural areas which lack access to traditional broadband internet or, in some cases, internet at all. The idea of being able to get fast and stable internet virtually anywhere with a clear view of the sky is intriguing.
Whether you are a digital nomad frustrated with data caps on cellular plans, homesteaders that live off the grid, or simply looking for an alternative to your local internet service provider, the concept of broadband from space is really intriguing. However, Starlink is not available everywhere, at least yet. Is Starlink available in Colorado?
Starlink is available in the state of Colorado. However, there are a few caveats you need to be aware of that may impact your ability to get Starlink internet service at your address. There are also a few reasons that you may wish to consider other options, including the higher price of Starlink at $90 – $110 per month + a $599 one-time charge for the equipment. Starlink is not necessarily the best option for everyone.
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Starlink Colorado Coverage
Starlink has geographic coverage throughout the state of Colorado. However, Starlink coverage does not automatically mean availability. The technology used by Starlink limits the number of users that can be in a given area at any one time.
Starlink refers to these areas as cells. Once Starlink sells all of the capacity within a cell, they do not allow any more customers to sign up if their service address is within that cell. Of course, as Starlink launches more satellites and increases its capacity, the number of users per cell that they will allow will likely increase.
As of right now, most of Colorado, with the exception of a few areas, has coverage. There are a few areas west of Denver and Boulder that are currently at capacity and subject to a waitlist. However, it is possible to bypass the waitlist by purchasing Starlink Roam (formerly known as Starlink for RVs).
However, Starlink Roam is more expensive at $150 per month and also receives lower data priority than residential customers. This often means much lower upload and download speeds.
The vast majority of Colorado is currently eligible to sign up for Starlink Internet.
Should You Sign Up for Starlink in Colorado
If you have access to cable or fiber-based internet, you should give Starlink a hard pass, at least right now. Starlink is not able to match the performance and reliability of a traditional broadband internet service.
If you live in an area of Colorado lacking access to traditional home broadband services offered by a cable or telco provider, Starlink is a great potential option, as is 5G home internet from Verizon or T-Mobile. In general, Starlink is better than 5G home internet, but 5G home internet is much cheaper, even half the cost in some cases. 5G home internet also requires no upfront equipment purchase.
Currently, Starlink Internet Service costs $90 – 110 per month. Starlink also requires you to pay $599 upfront for the Starlink dish and other required equipment. The upfront cost is similar to the $450 charged by HughesNet, a legacy satellite internet service provider but high when compared to traditional broadband services that often have no upfront equipment charge.
$90 – $110 per month is on the pricy side compared to most cable / DSL / fiber internet options. However, when compared to other satellite internet services, the price is actually relatively attractive, especially given that there is no data cap with Starlink.
When compared to 5G home internet services from T-Mobile or Verizon, Starlink is substantially more expensive at $110 per month. Generally, 5G home internet plans are coming in at $50 – $60 per month, and some plans even include taxes/fees in that monthly price. 5G home internet plans also require no upfront cost to purchase equipment.
At this time, most 5G home internet plans include unlimited data. Starlink is currently soft-capped at 1 TB of data per month. However, many 5G home internet plans include data deprioritization. This can result in significantly slower speeds when the local cell phone tower is crowded with network traffic.
If you live in a rural part of Colorado that has limited other options, Starlink is likely for you. Make sure you have somewhere you can put your Starlink dish that will have an unobstructed view of the sky. Any obstructions, such as tree branches, can greatly impact both your performance and your reliability.
Starlink, especially right now with the limited number of satellites currently in the Starlink constellation, is very sensitive to even small obstructions blocking your dish. Starlink has a mobile app to help you determine if this will be an issue for you.
(Link takes you to the Google Play Store.)
(Link takes you to the App Store)
If, based on the Starlink App, it looks like it will have a proper view of the sky, you are ready to sign up for service. If the App says that your view of the Sky is obstructed, you will either need to find a way to remove the obstructions or find a different location to put your Starlink dish.
Starlink Speeds Colorado
Starlink speeds in Colorado tend to range from about 60 Mbps – 90 Mbps average download speeds. Upload speeds tend to range from about 10 Mbps – 20 Mbps. However, speeds will vary from minute to minute and from location to location.
Starlink speeds are largely determined by how much capacity is available in a given Starlink coverage cell. Some Starlink cells are much more crowded than others. When a cell is overloaded, speeds are throttled back to ensure that everyone gets some bandwidth.
Colorado Starlink speeds are also dependent on if you are using Starlink Residential, Starlink Business, or Starlink Romam. Starlink Business users get faster speeds in part due to a larger, more expensive dish antenna and also due to receiving the highest data priority in the Starlink network.
Starlink Business speeds in the state of Colorado tend to average about 150 Mbps – 225 Mbps for downloads and 25 Mbps – 30 Mbps for uploads. This is greater than 50% faster than what most people are reporting with standard Starlink Residential service.
Starlink Roam subscribers tend to get similar speeds to residential customers, but some do report more slowdowns. This is due to how Starlink prioritized data from within its network. Starlink intentionally slows down traffic from Starlink Roam accounts to reduce the load on its network and to prioritize residential and business customers.
Starlink has geographic coverage across the state of Colorado. Availability at any given service address is dependent on Starlink cell capacity. At this time, most areas of Colorado have availability. However, there are several cells west of Denver and Boulder that are currently waitlisted for Starlink service.
Starlink Colorado speeds are generally fast, but if you are using Starlink Roam, you can expect to see some slowdowns, especially during peak hours of the day.