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Tool Talk Discussion Forum

Re: O/T Satellite Internet Service Information

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Author  [Modern View]
Hal/ Eastern WA

07-22-2013 17:00:34

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About 10 or 15 years ago, we had satellite internet service, because our other option, dial-up was glacially slow. The satellite worked better than the dial-up, but it was still very slow compared to the cable and dial-up available in town. And it cost about $75 a month. Then something went bad with the actual satellite, and it didn"t work at all for a couple of months.

We went looking for better options, and found that a new company had started selling service from a mountain near our home. It was based on microwave links and you had to be line-of-sight to the tower on the mountain. We were, and we signed up. At first, the speed was much faster than we had ever had with the satellite system, but over several year, as the company added more and more customers, the speed got much slower. And the price kept getting higher.

Then a couple of years ago, the telephone company "did some work" in our area and fixed whatever had been keeping us from getting decent service through the phone lines. I think they added some equipment nearby, but I really do not know what they did. The phone company also advertised that the rate would not be raised for 5 years. That rate was less than what we had been paying for the microwave system, so we signed up. In a couple of weeks we had MUCH faster internet for less than what the microwave system was charging us.

I did a little research about satellite internet service, and at that time they explained the poor speed by the fact that the signals have to travel back and forth between the antenna and the satellite. Even with the signal moving at or near the speed of light, each transfer takes some time, which adds up to limit the speed.

My research and experience are from 10 or 15 years ago, and maybe the technology and equipment is better for satellite internet today. It may be the best option, or maybe the only option in remote areas. But our experience was that the satellite internet service we had was fairly slow and quite expensive, both to get started and for monthly charges. I would sure do some checking around to see if there is a faster and less expensive alternative for your location. Good luck!

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