Google wins cloud deal from SpaceX for Starlink internet service

Elon Musk's SpaceX company will set up ground stations within Google's data centres.
Elon Musk's company will set up ground stations within Google's data centres Photo credit: Getty Images

Google has won a deal to provide cloud services to Elon Musk's SpaceX, which has launched a slew of Starlink satellites to provide high-speed internet, it said.

SpaceX will set up ground stations within Google's data centres that connect to the Starlink satellites, enabling fast and secure internet services via Google Cloud, the search giant said.

This service is expected to be available in the second half of 2021 for enterprise customers, the company said.

The deal comes at a time when demand for cloud-computing services has soared, with players like Microsoft and Amazon dominating the market. Cloud companies have also tapped into the telecoms sector, thanks to a jump in demand for 5G connectivity.

Google's cloud business accounts for about seven percent of its total revenue, as of the latest earnings report.

Last October, Microsoft won a similar deal from SpaceX to connect its Azure cloud computing platform to Starlink.

Privately held SpaceX, known for its reusable rockets and astronaut capsules, is ramping up satellite production for Starlink, a growing constellation of hundreds of internet-beaming satellites that Musk hopes will generate enough revenue to help fund SpaceX's interplanetary goals.

Meanwhile the search giant has been fined US$123 million by Italy's anti-trust watchdog for abusing its dominant market position, says Techcrunch.

The case focused on electric car charging app JuicePass which was denied access to Google's Android Auto, its operating system for in-car use.

The watchdog has ordered Google to make JuicePass available on Android Auto, saying it had violated Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.

Google hasn't said whether it will appeal the decision.