Published on April 27th, 2021 | by Bibhuranjan
Satellite internet is one of the most commonly available internet options, not just around the US, but around the globe. But can this relatively old technology keep up with today’s requirements?
To find that out, we will look at how it works and review some of the factors that make or break the deal.
What is Satellite Internet and How Does It Work?
You probably would have guessed by now that what satellite internet is. And yes! you are right, the one that uses satellite to deliver internet services. But how does that work? Let me explain that to you.
A satellite internet connection has three major components; a satellite dish antenna on the customer’s end, the satellite in space, and the dish antenna on ISP’s network center. The dish antenna placed on the user’s end is connected to a modem, which is further connected to the user’s computer.
Whenever you click to open a specific webpage, the modem sends the request to the dish antenna. The antenna transmits those signals to the satellite, and that in turn, sends the signal to the dish antenna placed on the network center of that ISP. The network center connects with the website server to fetch the requested information and transfers it back to the same path. Hence, you get your website results.
This process seems long but merely takes a fraction of a second. Moreover, it allows users to stay connected to the internet without depending upon any territorial connections.
Now you know how it works, let’s get to the part where we determine whether it is good enough or not.
Satellite Internet Review in 2021
While choosing any internet service, customers give importance to certain factors. These factors include availability, speed, reliability, Monthly Price, and, data cap.
We will use the same factors to review the satellite internet connection. So what are we waiting for? let’s get to it.
To review the satellite internet services, the very first thing we are going to look at is the availability. This is important for two reasons.
First, if it is available everywhere, there are fair chances that you will be able to get it too. Second, if you ever decide to move, you will not have to go through the process of finding a new service provider.
And when it comes to availability, satellite internet is the king. Wherever you go in the country, it will be there. For instance, HughesNet internet is the top satellite internet choice in the US and covers both urban and rural areas in all states.
The major reason behind that is it does not depend on wires to offer internet services to its customers. So, as long as you have a clear view of the southern sky, it won’t matter where you are.
Satellite ISPs offer a download speed ranging from 15 Mbps to 100 Mbps. However, it depends on the customer’s location. The most common speed option is the download speed of up to 25 Mbps.
If we compare it to other connections, it is much better than what a DSL connection has to offer in majority of the areas but lower than what cable and fiber connections have to offer.
Moreover, this speed is good enough for streaming movies, making video calls, working from home, and even taking online classes. So yeah, it might not be the best, but it works well with the general usage.
If we talk about the biggest weakness of a satellite connection, it would be the amount of data it offers. Most of the plans are not based on the speed, but the monthly data.
You will get to see plans that offer data amounts ranging from 10 GB to 200 GB. If you want to go over, then there will either be the extra cost or you will have to face a speed reduction. That is also referred to as having soft data limits.
So, you will have to choose between getting the same speed or paying extra. And if you don’t like both, then you will have to manage your usage so that you don’t run out of data.
Opposite to the contrary belief, satellite connections are reliable and offer great services. Even though there are no wires, the signals are transferred using advanced technologies and systems.
Moreover, the electricity outages don’t affect the satellite connection. That means no lost connection and stability. That is why a lot of people get satellite internet as a backup option so that they can use it during emergencies.
The only problem would be that the weather also has an impact on the performance of satellite internet. If the weather is cloudy in your area most of the time, don’t go for it.
The last aspect we will be looking at here is the price per month. Compared to other connection types, satellite internet is expensive. Where the cable internet offers a download speed of up to 100 Mbps and costs around $50, satellite internet costs much more and offers a lower speed.
So if you are concerned about saving money and have other internet options available, going for satellite internet would not be a wise choice.
The Final Take
Satellite internet is widely available, offers a good speed, and is reliable if you live in an area where the weather is mostly good. However, if saving money is your biggest concern, then perhaps you should look the other way and wait until other connection types are available in your area.
Cover Photo by Thomas Jensen on Unsplash