What is satellite internet?
Is it stable and reliable?
Does it really work?
Why choose satellite?
We felt it our duty to create this page
with one purpose - to educate and inform you about this wonderful new
product! We sell and install satellite dishes for internet
access but we believe you'll find we've kept our opinions below
HughesNet, formerly called DirecWay, created a
product several years ago which allowed a computer user to receive
internet communications through a satellite dish. With the exception
of some very high-end, non-consumer or military products, the home
user was required to upload through a telephone line.
2-WAY (SATELLITE RETURN) - A PC
user today with a satellite dish no longer needs a separate telephone
line. This user can now receive (download) at speeds up to 16
times greater than PC standard 56k or 28.8k modems. He or she can
also transmit (upload) at two to four times their current speed
while sending their data 22,300 miles out into space and back again.
1-WAY (DIAL RETURN) - The term
refers to older systems (DirecPC, DirecDuo, & AOL Plus) that can receive only. It requires a telephone line
and connection to an ISP at all times while the PC is in use.
SPEED GUARANTEES - Realize that
regardless of the delivery method, speeds are rarely, if ever,
guaranteed. For example, satellite ISP providers sometimes state, "Up to
700k download and up to 128k upload." The cable companies
state the same thing, often quoting momentary "burst rates" achieved
during periods of low traffic. The point is that all delivery
providers have the authority to bring the speed down at any time
(without telling you) to meet the needs of their growing customer
base. Broadband is generally defined as any sustained speed above
For raw speed only, cable currently
seems to offer a slight speed advantage over satellite dishes. DSL
service (from your phone company) appears to offer a higher upload speed than
but comparable download speed. Neither cable nor DSL are
available in all areas.
ISP - Regular improvements have
been made and have not gone unnoticed by the largest Internet Service
Providers (ISP). All are now engaged in providing new and
existing customers with high-speed access, comparable directly to
cable modems or DSL, using HughesNet-related satellite devices.
Your local ISP is probably never going to able to market satellite
products and services because of the high investment.
STABILITY - Existing
HughesNet-powered systems users find this to be a highly stable, very
reliable internet access platform for their Windows 98 Second Edition,
Windows ME, XP or Windows 2000 PC. HughesNet has proved itself over
The first question most people ask is -
how does this all compare with cable modems and DSL? Certainly there
are advantages and drawbacks to each. A full-fledged discussion is
beyond our desire here. For speed only, cable currently seems to
offer a slight speed advantage over satellite dishes. DSL speeds
comparable to satellite internet.
CABLE - The major arguments for
cable is lower installation costs (in most cases) and bursts of high
speed access using the same cable used for your TV set. Most
discussions against cable center on security, customer support, and
slowdowns in speed because of so many users sharing the same cable
simultaneously. Rural customers and customers who's cable provider
overloads the cable, however, do not have such options.
SATELLITE - Except for a very
high dollar dedicated line from the telephone company, the only
alternative to getting this high-speed access is satellite. One
advantage is no telephone line is required (except during activation
of the dish). Initial hardware cost and monthly service charges can
usually be justified for most users and home-based businesses.
One other big strength is that while
there might be a short signal loss during storms, the satellite will
reconnect itself as soon as the storm passes, something hardwired
cable or telephone lines cannot do without human intervention.
ONLINE GAMES - When playing
speed-oriented online games, satellite is not as fast as some
players would like it to be. This is because there is a split second
delay when one sends a key press on a 45,000 mile round trip into
outer space... Satellite is therefore not the best for
multi-player games where pressing the Enter key in a quick-draw type
DSL - DSL comes from the
telephone company. In a nutshell, its promise was high-speed access
as long as you lived within three miles (as the lines run, not as the
crow flies) of the phone company's local main switching office or
stations with special cards installed.
SUMMARY - All in all, cable may
likely fair better for users in a non-congested area. DSL has far too
many limitations and shortcomings. For almost everybody else,
satellite is often both the best and the only option.
Please take the time to read our
Questions (FAQ) page for more details!