Starlink is offering a new line of service, called Best Effort, to a limited number of people on the Residential waitlist. If selected for Best Effort, pre-order deposit holders will have a chance to get Starlink now, with an automatic upgrade to Residential later on when capacity expands.
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What is Best Effort?
Starlink Best Effort is a service plan from Starlink that allows people in waitlisted areas to get Starlink service immediately, before their address is available for full Residential service. It’s exactly as the name implies, a “better than nothing” type of service. Like Starlink Roam, Best Effort customers are deprioritized on the network, meaning they will experience slower speeds compared to Residential users. Also like Roam, Best Effort customers will be able to pause and resume service at any time.
The big advantage over Starlink Roam is the price. Best Effort is $120/month, which is less than the $150/month that Starlink Roam customers pay.
For a full explanation of the types of Starlink service, check out our Starlink Internet Plans Explained article.
Who is eligible?
Customers who have made a pre-order deposit for the Residential waitlist are eligible, but only select customers are getting the offer. We have received reports from several people across the US, so it doesn’t appear to be limited to one specific region.
We also know it’s not being offered to every pre-order customer at this moment. Perhaps Starlink is rolling this option out in phases, depending on the capacity issues in each specific region.
There is no way to request Best Effort. It’s an offer that Starlink will extend to eligible customers. Be sure to check your email inbox for communications from Starlink. You can also check your Starlink.com account portal periodically to see if the Best Effort offer pops up.
Will I keep my spot on the waitlist?
Yes, customers who opt for the Best Effort service will maintain their place on the waitlist for Residential service. Your account will automatically convert to Residential service when capacity opens in your area. That makes this service a much better deal than Starlink Roam for people who don’t need a portable dish to use at multiple locations.
What does Best Effort cost?
The Best Effort hardware will cost you $599, and you’ll pay $120 per month for the service. There are no contracts, and a 30 day return period if you aren’t satisfied.
Is the hardware the same as Residential?
Yes, the Starlink equipment you receive with Best Effort is identical to the equipment sold with Residential. When you are eligible to upgrade to Residential, you won’t have to buy new hardware, your Best Effort dish, mounts, etc. will all work the same with Residential service.
What speeds will I get with Best Effort?
Starlink Best Effort speeds range from 5 to 50 mbps down, and 2-10 mbps up. Best Effort and Roam users are deprioritized on the network, which means they will experience degraded performance when there are many users on the Starlink network in a specific cell.
Here are the official Best Effort speed specifications:
|Download Speed||Upload Speed||Latency||Data Caps|
|5-50 mbps||2-10 mbps||25-50 ms||No|
For more about speeds, check out our full article on Starlink speeds.
How can I tell if I have Best Effort?
One common question I get is how to tell if you are on Best Effort or not. If you have accepted the Best Effort offer, and are wondering if you have been upgraded to Residential, there is an easy way to tell:
- Log in to your account on Starlink.com
- Click the Manage button next to your Starlink plan
- If you see the option to pause service, you have Best Effort. If you don’t have the option to pause service, you have Residential
Also, Starlink will send you an email when your service plan has been upgraded from Best Effort to Residential. The timeline for when to expect to be upgraded varies based on location, number of Starlink subscribers in your area, and how many satellites Starlink has deployed.
Starlink Best Effort is Starlink’s latest attempt to serve more users with limited network capacity. The demand for Starlink is much higher than the network has the capacity for. As the satellite constellation is deployed over time, capacity will increase.
Starlink believes many customers will accept degraded performance over not having internet at all. With the success of Starlink Roam, it was only a matter of time before Starlink realized many people were ordering Roam just to have internet at home. This new Best Effort service gives those people a better option.
Did you get the email? Do you plan to subscribe to Best Effort? Let us know what you think in the comments!