SpaceX will install Starlink ground stations within Google's data center properties under a new deal between the two companies. The tech giant's cloud business has joined forces with Starlink in a partnership that could last for up to seven years, according to CNBC. Together, the two are aiming to provide enterprise customers operating in or running projects out of remote areas access to Google's cloud service and Starlink's satellite-based internet service in the second half of 2021.
By putting ground stations within Google's data centers, they're giving Starlink satellites the ability to deliver data reliably and with low-latency to customers via Google Cloud. As CNBC explains, customers' devices will communicate directly with the satellites linked to Google's data centers. They can then run applications quickly in those data centers using Google's cloud services, which have analytics, artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities. Google's data centers will then send data back to them via Starlink's satellites.
Last year, Microsoft announced that it's working with SpaceX on a new Azure cloud computing business. Now, a source told CNBC that SpaceX would be relying on Google's data centers even for that partnership.
In Google's and SpaceX'S announcement, the companies said:
"Google Cloud’s high-capacity private network will support the delivery of Starlink's global satellite internet service, bringing businesses and consumers seamless connectivity to the cloud and Internet, and enabling the delivery of critical enterprise applications to virtually any location."
While the new partners didn't confirm it in their announcement, SpaceX will reportedly deploy ground stations in Google's US data centers first. The partnership will expand in the future, though, and will lead to Starlink ground stations within Google's data centers around the world.