The announcement of a new constellation comes amid the tech giant’s plans to “provide low-latency, high-speed broadband connectivity to unserved and underserved communities around the world.”
Amazon is to join the likes of Facebook, Google, SpaceX in the race to mark interstellar territory via its Project Kuiper initiative. Kuiper Systems LLC has been recently noticed to make three sets of filings with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the international organisation in charge of coordinating satellite orbits.
Amazon’s constellation is set to include 784 satellites at an altitude of 590 kilometers, 1,296 satellites at 610 km and 1,156 satellites in 630 km orbits.
The data provided by the satellites will cover locations on Earth ranging from 56 degrees north to 56 degrees south, an area encompassing 95 percent of the world’s population.
Elon Musk’s rocket company, SpaceX, has been reported to be raising $500 million to launch as many as 12,000 satellites, as part of its constellation called Starlink.
READ MORE: SpaceX Raising $500 Million to Help Launch 12,000-Satellite Broadband Network
The working title for Facebook’s satellite project is Athena, to be launched in 2019. According to the social network, Athena is designed to “efficiently provide broadband access to unserved and underserved areas throughout the world.”
In Amazon’s case, it is yet unclear whether the company will build its own satellites or buy them from a third party.
“Project Kuiper is a new initiative to launch a constellation of Low Earth Orbit satellites that will provide low-latency, high-speed broadband connectivity to unserved and underserved communities around the world. This is a long-term project that envisions serving tens of millions of people who lack basic access to broadband internet. We look forward to partnering on this initiative with companies that share this common vision,” a spokesperson for Amazon said.