SpaceX CEO Elon Musk recently asked the Federal Communications Commission for permission to launch 4,000 satellites into low Earth orbit. The satellites will eventually be used to blanket much of the globe with wireless Internet connectivity.

As The Independent points out, satellite Internet is far from a new idea. The problem with beaming a connection to the web from space right now is latency. Musk plans to reduce latency by launching his fleet into low orbit, putting the satellites closer to users on Earth.

The only issue with this approach is that putting satellites closer to the surface of our planet means more are required for the intended coverage area. Satellites in higher orbit can cover a much wider area.

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