Satellite Internet is growing by leaps and bounds over the past several years. Rural Internet customers are quickly realizing that they are not cornered by the "trailing edge" technology the dial-up ISP's offer. There is a better way to access the Internet and satellite is it.
Satellite Internet provides customers with an always on, lightning fast connection without dial-up delays, disconnections or the use of your phone line. Surf the Internet up to 30-times faster, download with ease, read emails, send pictures, or just browse to your hearts content.
Satellite Internet is available within the 48 continental United States. You will need a clear view of the southern sky and a small dish, either mounted to your home or attached to a pole in your yard. As demand for this faster Internet service rises more and more great promotional deals pop up. Shop around and you will be able to save on equipment, installation and monthly service rates. The service is simple to use and setup. The satellite Internet modem simply plugs into a wall outlet and to the Ethernet port on the back of your computer. There is no dialing into an ISP as the service is always on and available 24/7.
There are a few satellite ISP's out there, but WildBlue and HughesNet are clearly the leaders in the industry. The main difference between the two is how they deliver service to customers. HughesNet uses KU bands, or frequency to transmit, where WildBlue uses KA band. The main difference is that KA is much less crowded than KU band. KU delivery uses one large beam covering the country while KA used by WildBlue uses individual spot beams to cover the same area. The spot beams allow WildBlue to reuse frequencies in other beams in order to maximize bandwidth for its satellites.
Because satellite Internet has a limited amount of bandwidth, they use a Fair Access Policy to regulate the use of the service. Basically, in order to assure that each customer has the same quality of service a limit is placed on the amount of uploading and downloading a customer can perform in a set period of time. HughesNet uses a daily FAP policy, where WildBlue uses a rolling 30-day period of its FAP usage levels. No matter which way FAP is delivered, it is important to note that only 4% off all users get "FAPPED." If you are over your allotted limit you are simply reduced to dial-up like speeds until you gain more threshold in your account.
Satellite Internet can also be a solution for small rural businesses as well, however, it is important to note that the service performance is not recommended for more than two computers. Other limitations on the service would include, Voice Over Internet Protocol over VOIP. Examples of VOIP would be Vonage phone service. Also, the service is not recommended for Virtual Private Networks (VPN) access, because of the latency in the transmitting signal from the modem to the satellite and back down, VPN connections, which require constant authentication simply drop and require authentication over and over.
The cost of Satellite Internet depends on the speed that you require. No matter what your needs are, however, the prices will be competitive with most cable and DSL providers. Like many traditional ISP's the satellite providers will provide many of the same extras such as; web-based email options with anywhere from 5-10 addresses. Web space usually between 10-20 MB. Virus protection software, alternate remote access dialup service, should you need to access the Internet away from your base setup, the ability to maintain existing AOL accounts if you prefer and equipment warranties.
Satellite Internet providers have enormous customer satisfaction ratings with independent polls showing 94% of satellite internet customers saying they would recommend the service to their friends and family members. Among the areas where satellite service scored highest, reliability of service, speed, price to quality of service ratio, tech support and customer service.
For PC users the requirements include: 300+ MHz processor, 128 MB RAM, Windows ME, 2000 or XP operating systems, 100 MB of free hard drive space and an Ethernet NIC card. For Mac users: 300+ MHz processor, 128 MB RAM, OS10.2+ operating system, 100 MB of free hard drive space and an Ethernet NIC card.
As you can see, there is very little reason to put up with the frustrations of a slow dialup service - if you are ready to go fast, drop that extra or unused phone line and get things done WildBlue can have you up, soaring and remembering all of the things you used to love about the Internet.