Royal Caribbean Getting Starlink; Cable Firms Lose Net Subscribers; Facebook Gaming Platform DiesPosted: August 31, 2022
Ahoy, internet! Royal Caribbean has announced that it will be adding Starlink Maritime service to its entire fleet, after a test sailing on one of its ships brought in rave reviews. According to techcrunch.com, people were delighted with the service…especially those cruisers who had sailed before with the expensive and slow net connections. Royal is apparently paying $5000 a month and dropped $10,000 for the upfront hardware…a drop in the ocean compared to the other costs on a cruise ship…for example, it costs about $500,000 for a cruise ship to go through the Panama Canal!
For years, the cable companies have had a legal monopoly or near monopoly on connecting your home…and jacked up prices regularly accordingly. With the advent of 5G and even satellite service like Starlink, their subscriber base is starting to erode. Fastcompany.com reports that Comcast’s internet subscriber base was basically flat last quarter, while Charter dropped by 21,000 Spectrum internet subscribers. In each case, its the first drop ever in their home internet business. With fast 5G cell service costing less money, its easy to see why. T-Mobile, for example, gets $50 a month for home internet…and the speeds run 33-182 Mbps. Verizon also gets $50 a month, and claims 85-300 Mbps. They also cut the price in half for customers who bundle smartphone service. Comcast’s non-promotional internet starts at $99 a month, and Spectrum’s starts at $75 a month. The only think holding back 5G providers is the fact that some hit homes with heavy use data caps, and some people that gobble data to prevent network congestion. Verizon so far has no caps.
Facebook is killing off its Facebook Gaming Platform, which you probably didn’t even know existed, after two years. Techcrunch.com says as of October 28th, the app will no longer work. If you actually play their games, or use the related streams or groups, you will just have to use the Gaming section on the main Facebook app. Not to give up, Meta is testing a Twitch-like live streaming platform. The company seems to not be able to let go of trying to recreate its initial success with games, from the days when they ran crude Zynga games inside the Facebook app…but users have moved on.