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Starlink engineering teams have been focused on improving the performance of our network with the goal of delivering a service with stable 20 millisecond (ms) median latency and minimal packet loss.


Over the past month, we have meaningfully reduced median and worst-case latency for users around the world. In the United States alone, we reduced median latency by more than 30%, from 48.5ms to 33ms during hours of peak usage. Worst-case peak hour latency (p99) has dropped by over 60%, from over 150ms to less than 65ms. Outside of the United States, we have also reduced median latency by up to 25% and worst-case latencies by up to 35%.




Latency refers to the amount of time, usually measured in milliseconds, that it takes for a packet to be sent from your Starlink router to the internet and for the response to be received. This is also known as “round-trip time”, or RTT. Latency is one of the most important factors in your perceived experience when using the internet – web pages load faster, audio and video calls feel closer to real-life, and online gaming feels responsive. As an example, testing has shown that increasing bandwidth beyond around 10 Mbps does not increase web-page load time, but a reduction in latency results in substantially lower load times.

延迟是指从您的星链路由器发送数据包到互联网并接收响应所需的时间,通常以毫秒为单位计量。这也被称为“往返时间”,或RTT。延迟是使用互联网时感知体验中最重要的因素之一 - 网页加载更快,音频和视频通话感觉更接近真实,在线游戏感觉更具响应性。例如,测试表明,将带宽增加到10 Mbps以上并不会增加网页加载时间,但延迟减少会大大降低加载时间。

To measure Starlink’s latency, we collect anonymized measurements from millions of Starlink routers every 15 seconds. These 15 second average latencies are then used to calculate the median and worst-case latency. The median (50th percentile or p50) refers to the point where half of the latency measurements are below that number and the other half are above. The worst-case latency, or 99th percentile, is defined as the place where 99% of measurements are better than the point. While we look at data from all points in time, we specifically focus on the performance during hours of peak usage (6-9 PM local time), when the largest number of people are using Starlink, and the network is under the most load.



What Drives Latency 是什么造成了延迟

Latency in the Starlink network is driven by several factors. The biggest ones are:


• Physical speed-of-light propagation from the user to the satellite and back to the ground. This is in the range of 1.8-3.6ms per leg, and usually under 10ms for the round-trip. Additional latency can be induced if traffic flows over laser links, instead of directly to the ground (as a result of congestion mitigation, lack of satellite to ground paths, or other factors). While laser connectivity is essential for connecting the most remote locations on Earth and for routing around congestion in the network, we are making strides to ensure that latency sensitive traffic can flow over the shortest path possible.

• 用户到卫星再返回地面的物理光速传播。这一传播时间在1.8-3.6毫秒之间,通常往返不超过10毫秒。如果流量通过激光链路而不是直接传输到地面(这是由于拥塞缓解、缺乏卫星到地面路径或其他因素造成的),可能会引入额外的延迟。虽然激光连接对于连接地球上最偏远的地区以及在网络中绕过拥塞至关重要,但我们正在努力确保延迟敏感的流量能够沿着尽可能最短的路径流动。

• Ground latency from the gateway sites to the internet connection point driven by ground network layout. In 2024, we are adding 6 internet connect locations (called Points of Presence, or PoPs) in the US and are optimizing gateway locations and our planning algorithms to ensure that traffic can land as close to its destination point as possible. We will continue to ensure that users are allocated to optimal internet connection locations, so that all users get the lowest latency possible route to the internet.

• 从网关站点到互联网连接点的地面延迟,受地面网络布局的影响。2024年,我们将在美国增加6个互联网连接位置(称为PoPs),并优化网关位置和我们的规划算法,以确保流量尽可能地靠近其目标点着陆。我们将继续确保用户被分配到最佳的互联网连接位置,以便所有用户都能得到通往互联网的最低延迟路径。

• Fronthaul (the radio links between the satellite and user) scheduling latency driven by the network topology and the number of users served by a given beam from a satellite. While this latency is an inherent part of shared wireless systems, there is significant room for optimization, and this has been a major focus in the past several months.

• 前向链路(卫星与用户之间的无线电链路)调度延迟,受网络拓扑和由卫星给定波束服务的用户数量的影响。虽然这种延迟是共享无线系统的固有部分,但存在着重要的优化空间,这已经成为过去几个月的主要焦点。

• Dumb stuff driven by non-physical limitations in our system – unneeded processing delays, unoptimized buffers, or unnecessary packet drops that force retries. Buffers across our network have been right sized to reduce bufferbloat, and queueing algorithms have been improved to increase capacity on our gateway links from the ground to satellites. Our WiFi latency has been improved, with the addition of active queue management, fq_codel, to the Starlink WiFi router. With active queue management enabled, when one person on your WiFi is downloading a big file, and another is playing a game, the game latency will not be affected by the download.

• 非物理限制导致的愚蠢问题 - 不必要的处理延迟、未经优化的缓冲区或不必要的数据包丢弃,迫使重试。我们网络中的缓冲区已经被正确调整大小以减少缓冲区过度膨胀,并且排队算法已经得到改进,以增加从地面到卫星的网关链路的容量。我们的WiFi延迟得到了改善,通过向星链WiFi路由器添加积极的队列管理,fq_codel。启用积极的队列管理后,当您WiFi上的一个人正在下载大文件时,另一个人正在玩游戏,游戏延迟不会受到下载的影响。


Continuing Towards Our 20ms Goal 继续朝着我们的20毫秒目标努力

Over the past several months, monitoring and metrics have also been added across the network to measure latency on every subsystem down to the microsecond. We have rigorously tuned our algorithms to prefer paths with lower latency, no matter how small the difference and to remove any and all sources of unnecessary and non-physical latency.


This is just a selection of some of the most impactful changes we have made. Since the beginning of the year, teams have deployed and tested 193 different satellite software builds, 75 gateway software builds, 222 Starlink software builds, and 57 WiFi software builds.


Thank you to our 2.6M+ customers for choosing Starlink. You can expect latency to continue to improve over the coming weeks and months as we prioritize software changes, build additional ground infrastructure, and launch more satellites. In future updates, we’ll communicate other performance statistics and goals of our network as we work to improve your experience.


Be sure to check the latest latency statistics for your region at starlink.com/map.


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