The agreement with SpaceX covers service on up to 100 airplanes. Starlink service is pending regulatory approval and is expected to be available by the fourth quarter 2022. Starlink service to passengers will be free of charge, with no login screens required to access the network.
NASA has tapped SpaceX, Amazon and four other American companies to begin developing "near-Earth space communication services" that it may use in future agency missions. The use of commercial satellites will reduce the agency's expenditures and allow it to focus efforts on deep space exploration and scientific missions.
The combined value of the agency's deal is $278.5 million, of which SpaceX received the largest share - $69.95 million. Each company has proposed a technical approach to lower costs, increase flexibility, and improve performance for a broad range of missions.