Satellite systems that provide high-speed internet at a low cost could help with the adoption of cryptocurrencies
While cryptocurrency has shown it is capable of improving a wide variety of industries around the world, one aspect that remains to be explored is the beneficial impact of space technology on cryptocurrencies.
Examples of these technologies include added security to network nodes, as well as more widespread use of the internet in general. Trading and dealing in cryptocurrencies is only possible with the presence of the internet.
In 2016, the World Economic Forum (WEF) revealed that around four billion people in the world did not have immediate access to the internet. One of the challenges that people face with making the internet more accessible is the lack of infrastructure — which includes electricity and 3G data coverage.
The WEF found that 15 percent of the world did not have electricity and 31 percent did not have 3G data coverage.
In addition, the organisation explained that broadband internet is only an affordable commodity for residents in 29 countries. The WEF said that it was “urging the government to introduce policies that aim to improve infrastructure coverage and quality.”
Apart from the issue of affordability, infrastructure is a significant hurdle for many people when it comes to their access to the internet. Constructing telephone lines or data cables in isolated or mountainous regions can be a difficult task.
In these situations, satellite internet becomes useful because it allows access to the internet as long as there is a means of communicating with the satellites.
To put this in perspective, an African satellite broadband provider called Konnect offers unlimited satellite broadband for £72.85 per month.
However, the global satellite communications service provider, GroundControl, pointed out that these operations could be incredibly expensive.
If a portable satellite internet terminal with unlimited access were to be set up for the entire continent of Africa, a plan would cost around $1,100 per month.
A fixed and non-portable solution is even costlier; a professional-grade system, with a satellite dish, costs around $4,353 at a minimum.
This is why the cost of satellite internet access needs to be reduced significantly before it can be made available for general use. It is also why current developments in space are important for the cryptocurrency industry.
SpaceX, an aerospace company with the Starlink programme, is working on ways to provide high-speed satellite internet at low costs around the world.