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Starry wants to put high-speed 5G internet in reach of everyone

Starry, a Boston startup, wants deliver high-speed 5G internet in major cities at a reasonable price. Today, it announced it is expanding service from its initial launch in Boston to New York City. The company also announced a deal with Related Companies, a large national affordable housing owner, to host Starry equipment on its buildings and offer Starry service to its tenants. The Starry solution consists of three parts: The beam sits on a high roof. The point sits on a lower roof and the consumer gets a Starry Station, which acts as a modem of sorts to deliver the internet service to the home. As they put it, internet access becomes an extension of the property. Diagram: Starry While the hardware solution is impressive in itself, it allows Starry to offer high-speed internet to consumers at a more affordable price point than traditional large providers. Company founder and CEO Chet Kanojia says his company can provide up to 200 Megabits per second service, up and down, for just $50 a month with no data caps or long-term contracts. Installation is free and the company includes 24/7 customer care at no additional cost. While it’s hard to compare pricing across services, Starry should appeal to cord cutters, who have dropped cable TV for more affordable streaming alternatives and have been looking for a way to free themselves from large internet service providers. It’s fair to say that no other provider offers this kind of speed up and down for that price. The solution requires high rooftops to place the enabling infrastructure and the arrangement with Related is particularly interesting in this context. The deal is good for both parties, giving Starry the infrastructure it needs to place its equipment in major cities, while providing Related tenants with low-cost internet access starting later this year. “Our first strategic partnership is with Related’s properties, which is a big property ownership company in all the major cities. It allows us to basically extend our network using their infrastructure, rooftops and buildings,” Kanojia said. The startup plans to provide service to other New York City…

Starry CEO Chet Kanojia will discuss the future of home networks at TechCrunch Disrupt SF

Starry wants to change the way the home internet is delivered. Founded in 2014, the Boston-based startup takes an innovative approach to the space by beaming broadband speed internet through the air, using millimeter waves. The company’s novel technique has drummed up great interest during its four years of existence, offering the potential to circumvent the need to lay down fiber-optics and shake up ISP lockdowns. Investors have certainly been paying attention. In July, the startup raised another $100 million, bringing its total up to $163 million. The company has been piloting its service for a couple of years now, starting in its native Boston and rolling out to a handful of other American metropolitan areas, including testing in Los Angeles and Washington, DC, both of which arrived this year. In January, Starry teamed up with networking manufacturing giant Marvell to help distribute the startup’s technology across the globe. Starry CEO Chaitanya “Chet” Kanojia will be joining us next week at Disrupt San Francisco to discuss his company’s growth and the future of its cutting edge internet technology. Prior to founding Starry, Kanojia also served as the founder and CEO of TV streaming platform Aero and media advertising company Navic Networks, which was acquired by Microsoft in 2008. Disrupt SF will take place in San Francisco’s Moscone Center West from September 5 to 7. The full agenda is here, and you can still buy tickets right here. Disrupt SF will take place in San Francisco’s Moscone Center West from September 5 to 7. The full agenda is here, and you can still buy tickets right here.

Starry launches pilot program with Boston Housing Authority to expand affordable internet access

Internet service provider Starry announced today the launch of its Starry Connect program with a pilot through Boston Housing Authority (BHA) to help provide free access to internet for residents living in one of the city’s public housing apartment complexes. The Boston-based startup launched in 2016 with a plan to provide internet access through a spoke-and-wheel system of transmitters and access points. This point-to-multipoint system uses a phased array laser on top of a city building to send a 5G signal out that users can connect to via Starry Points that can be installed at a window or personal roof. “Access to high-speed broadband is critical for education, communication, and personal and professional development, and yet today, many people still lack access to a basic, affordable, and reliable internet connection,” said Chet Kanojia, co-founder and CEO, in a statement. “That’s why we’re excited to partner with the Boston Housing Authority to devise creative solutions to help get more of their residents online and engaged with the critical services they need.” With the program Starry launched today, residents of the public housing apartment building will be able to access free Wi-Fi in the building’s common area, hallways and new computer lab. Virginia Lam Abrams, Starry senior vice president of communications and government relations, told TechCrunch that some residents may also be able to access the signal in their rooms, but the primary focus for this installation is to provide common area access for these primarily elderly and disabled residents. Because Starry Connect’s pilot launch in the BHA building is part of the Boston public housing system, residents will receive free connection, but Starry also has plans to provide low-cost pricing options for residents living in affordable housing, as well. The program has no set end date, says Abrams, but the company has plans to check in with residents in a few months to see where the program is succeeding and where it can be improved. Following this initial pilot launch, Abrams says that Starry has hopes to expand into other BHA communities, as well as public and affordable housing in other…

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