SpaceX has begun testing the Direct to Cell service, which will make Starlink satellite communications available on ordinary smartphones, writes Engadget.

The company sent and received the first text messages using the Starlink satellites it recently launched into orbit. As part of the experiment, SpaceX collaborated with T-Mobile.

“On Monday, January 8, less than 6 days after launch, we sent and received our first text messages to and from unmodified cell phones on the ground to our new satellites in space using TMobile network spectrum… [indicating that] the system works,” SpaceX wrote in a blog post.

In early January, a Falcon 9 rocket launched 21 Starlink satellites into orbit. Six of them are capable of providing the Direct to Cell service. This happened shortly after the US Federal Communications Commission granted SpaceX permission to test the Direct to Cell service.

Direct to Cell will allow exchanging files, text and voice messages via a satellite connection. The service was announced for launch in 2024.