Starlink vs. Xplore

Which is the Best Solution?

Starlink satellite vs Xplornet satellite

July 16 2023 · 7 minutes to read

Key Takeaways
  • Starlink offers high-speed, low-latency internet service, but it is more expensive.

  • Xplore is more affordable and widely available, but it has higher latency and is more susceptible to weather-related outages.

  • Starlink offers a month-to-month contract with no long-term commitment, while Xplore requires a 1-year term.

  • The choice between Starlink and Xplore will depend on individual requirements, budget, and location.

In the vast landscapes of Canada, where urban centres are often separated by large rural and remote areas, reliable internet access is a significant challenge. This article will delve into a comparison of two major players in the field of satellite internet services: Starlink and Xplore. We will explore their offerings, compare their performance, and discuss their impact on rural Canadians. This article is a must-read for anyone to make an informed decision about their internet provider.

Table of Contents

What is Satellite Internet?

Satellite internet is a type of internet service that uses satellite technology to provide internet access. This is particularly useful in rural and remote areas where traditional wired connections like lte, DSL or fibre-optic cables are not available. Satellite internet providers like Starlink and Xplore aim to bridge this digital divide.

Who is Starlink?

Starlink is a satellite internet service launched by SpaceX, the aerospace company founded by Elon Musk. It uses a constellation of low-earth orbit (LEO) satellites to provide high-speed, low-latency internet service.

Who is Xplore?

Xplore, formerly known as Xplornet, is a Canadian internet service provider specializing in both satellite and fixed wireless internet services. As a leading entity in the sector, Xplore has earned a reputation for being a reliable solution for rural Canadians in need of internet connectivity. Following a rebranding initiative, the company continues its mission to provide high-quality fibre and 5G broadband services, affirming its commitment to enhancing internet access and experiences for Canada's rural population.

How do Starlink and Xplore Compare in Terms of Internet Speed?

Internet speed is a critical factor when choosing an ISP. Both Starlink and Xplore offer competitive speeds, but how do they stack up against each other?

Feature Xplore Starlink
Network type Satellite Satellite
Coverage Select areas in Canada, the United States, and select countries in Europe Select areas in the world
Download speed Up to 100 Mbps Up to 220 Mbps
Upload speed Up to 10 Mbps Up to 25 Mbps
Latency 25-60 ms 20-40 ms
Jitter 5-10 ms 0-5 ms
Cost Starting at \$72/month Starting at \$99/month
Equipment Satellite dish, modem, router Satellite dish, router
Installation Professional installation required Self-installation available


What is the Latency Like for Starlink and Xplore?

Latency refers to the delay before a transfer of data begins following an instruction for its transfer. It is a crucial factor in the performance of your internet connection, especially for real-time applications like video calls and online gaming.

Provider Latency (ms)
Starlink 20-40
Fiber optic 10-20
Cable 20-50
Broadband 50-100
LTE 50-100
Xplore 600-700

As you can see, Starlink has significantly lower latency than Xplore. This is because Starlink's satellites are in low Earth orbit (LEO), which is much closer to the Earth than the geosynchronous orbit (GEO) of Xplore's satellites. The closer the satellites are to the Earth, the less time it takes for data to travel between them and your device, which results in better performance.

Lower latency is important for applications that require real-time communication, such as online gaming, video conferencing, and streaming video. If you are an avid user of these, Starlink is the clear choice.

What Internet Plans are Offered by Starlink and Xplore?

Both Starlink and Xplore offer a variety of internet plans to cater to different user needs. Let's delve into the details of these plans.

Provider Initial Cost (Hardware + Installation) Monthly Cost Data Limit
Starlink $350 + $50 (Shipping and Handling) $160.97 Unlimited
Xplore (up to 25 Mbps plan) $99/$59 (Installation) + Hardware cost $119.99 - $133.99 200 GB - 250 GB
Xplore (up to 10 Mbps plan) $99/$59 (Installation) + Hardware cost $89.99 - $124.99 50 GB - 250 GB

See detailed Starlink pricing with available subvvention

See detailed Xplore plans

Installation: Delay, Cost, and Complexity

The installation process for satellite internet can vary significantly between providers, impacting the delay before service can begin, the cost, and the complexity of the setup. Both Starlink and Xplore have unique installation procedures that potential customers should be aware of. Let's compare these aspects of both providers:

Internet Service Provider Installation Delay Installation Cost Complexity
Starlink 1 to 2 weeks $50 (Shipping and Handling) Self-installation with user-friendly kit
Xplore Depends on scheduling $99/$59 Professional installation may be required

Let us professionally install your Starlink Dish

Pros and Cons, How Reliable are Starlink and Xplore

Reliability is an important factor to consider when choosing an internet service provider, especially if you live in a rural area. Both Starlink and Xplore are satellite internet providers, so they are both susceptible to weather outages. However, Starlink is generally considered to be more reliable than Xplore.

Here is a comparison of the reliability of Starlink and Xplore:


logo starlink


logo Xplore

Ultimately, the reliability of Starlink and Xplore will depend on your individual needs and location. If you need the fastest speeds and lowest latency, then Starlink is the better option. However, if you are on a budget or live in an area where Starlink is not yet available, then Xplore may be a better choice.

What is the Coverage of Starlink and Xplore in Canada?

Both Starlink and Xplore provide extensive coverage across Canada, encompassing almost the entire country.

Here are some additional details about the coverage offered by Starlink and Xplore:

Contract Term: Commitment and Flexibility

When choosing an internet service provider, the length and terms of the contract are important factors to consider. Some providers require a long-term commitment, while others offer more flexibility with month-to-month plans. Let's compare the contract terms for Starlink and Xplore:

Internet Service Provider Contract Term
Starlink Month-to-month, no long-term contract
Xplore 1-year term

What is the Future of Satellite Internet in Canada?

With advancements in technology and increasing competition, the landscape of satellite internet in Canada is rapidly evolving. Let's explore what the future holds for satellite internet in Canada.

In conclusion, both Starlink and Xplore offer viable solutions for rural Canadians seeking reliable internet access. While Starlink offers the advantage of high-speed, low-latency internet, Xplore provides a variety of plans to cater to different user needs. The choice between the two will depend on individual requirements, budget, and location. As the landscape of satellite internet in Canada continues to evolve, it is essential to stay up-to-date with the latest developments to make an informed decision about your internet service provider.

  • Ted Tayler Mobo Telecom
  • about the author

    Ted Taylor, better known as Mr. Mobo, is a telecom analyst and columnist. Mr. Mobo advises consumers on everything related to telecommunications.