Starlink Adds New Rule For Kit Transfers

Starlink added a new rule to equipment transfers, which seems aimed at unauthorized resellers and flippers. The new policy, which establishes a minimum ownership length, should help prevent resellers from buying multiple Starlink kits and immediately reselling them on 3rd party marketplaces, like Amazon and eBay. The unauthorized reselling of Starlink kits has become a big issue lately, with many buyers getting scammed or tricked into thinking they are buying brand new equipment.

Details of the new transfer rule

The new rule states that a Starlink kit isn’t eligible for transfer until 120 days after the purchase, or 90 days after initial activation, whichever comes first. You can find the new transfer eligibility policy in Starlink’s terms of service. To put the new rule another way:

  • If you purchase a new Starlink kit and start using it on a service plan, your kit will be eligible for transfer 90 days from when it first connected to the Starlink network.
  • If you purchase a new Starlink kit but never power it up (or you immediately cancel the subscription), your kit will be eligible for transfer 120 days after the purchase date.

Previously, individuals looking to make a profit could purchase a Starlink kit and subscription, immediately cancel it without ever paying for the first month’s service, and then sell the dish. In many cases, the kits were purchased at a discount, taking advantage of local Starlink promotions. The kit would then be sold at full price on 3rd party marketplaces, resulting in a nice profit for the unauthorized retailer.

Related: How To Transfer A Starlink Kit

It is unclear how this new policy affects used Starlink kits. On the one hand, I was able to cancel and transfer one of my used Starlink kits that I had only recently added to my account. I did this as a test after Starlink updated the policy. To me, that is confirmation that Starlink isn’t enforcing the 90 day minimum for the activation of used kits. On the other hand, I’ve read a couple of social media comments that seem to have the opposite experience. The best I can do is to say that your experience transferring a kit you bought used may vary. Please comment or email me if you have additional information to report on your experience.

Why resellers are a problem

Starlink has been dealing with unauthorized retailers since the ability to transfer was introduced. The main problem with resellers is that they are usually selling to people who believe they are buying brand new hardware from Starlink. On marketplaces like Amazon, it isn’t immediately clear that the seller isn’t affiliated with Starlink. They take advantage of the fact that buyers are comfortable shopping on Amazon, and often don’t look into the details of who exactly is selling the products.

Starlink doesn’t sell on Amazon or most other online marketplaces. They sell directly to consumers from their website, and they also work with select authorized retailers, such as Home Depot, Best Buy, and Costco. If you buy from an unauthorized reseller, technically you are buying used equipment, even if the box has never been opened.

Unauthorized reselling also creates inventory issues for Starlink, which can drive up costs for customers, and introduce shipping delays. For example, if a reseller orders 100 Ethernet Adapters to flip on Amazon, it can increase the order timeline for real customers trying to order from Starlink. Order delays drive more customers to Amazon, where the accessories are immediately available, but at marked up prices. Unauthorized resellers aim to take advantage of the inventory situation to make a quick profit.

Final thoughts

The new 90/120 day minimum for subscriptions, before a kit transfer is available, is a policy change that won’t affect the vast majority of normal Starlink customers. The rule takes aim at unauthorized resellers, who try to make a profit by buying accessories and kits from Starlink, and then immediately reselling them on 3rd party marketplaces at a markup.

I don’t believe this new rule will completely curb unauthorized reselling, but it is a step in the right direction. If you tried to transfer a kit, and the transfer button wasn’t available, the new rule might explain why. Let me know what you think about this new rule, and unauthorized resellers, in the comment section below!

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2 thoughts on “Starlink Adds New Rule For Kit Transfers”

  1. Hi,

    I have a small business that sells communication units that uses Starlink as one of the communication protocols.

    We buy Starlink kits from from a Starlink retailer (similar to Best buy) configures the units and transfer the ownership to the customer, ready for “plug and play” with our system.

    The systems is off course tested before shipping and need an account.

    We have close interactions with our customers, but dont want them to purchase the kit themselves. (Creates unnecessary fuzz and sort of undermines the the business idea)

    Any thoughts on how we can avoid a 90/120 day problem?

    Mr. E.
    Subscriber to this great and very informative blog.

    • If you are moving a decent amount of units, you could become an authorized reseller yourself to avoid the new transfer rule. Besides that, I can’t think of a way, unless you change your process and require the customer to activate the unit, with your assistance. That way no transfer would be necessary.


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