Why you should avoid satellite Internet
Satellite internet is often called the better alternative, and that it has so many wonderful features and ways to save you money. In all reality, the only people who should be bothering with satellite Internet are those who live in the middle of nowhere and have no other option, besides dial-up, for high speed Internet. Here's why:
#1 Reason to Avoid Satellite Internet: Usage Limits
The big names in satellite Internet, HighesNet and Wild Blue, both have usage limits. That means you can only use the Internet so much per day, or month. You have a set amount of downloading and uploading. If you go over that amount, say goodbye to your Internet.
No big deal, you say? You don't download movies or music so you'll have no problem with usage limits. Don't jump to conclusions. Downloading includes playing games online; Farmville on Facebook will suck up your usage in no time. Downloading also includes every single time you open and close a web page. Basically everything you do online takes up some of your usage limit.
When do get the usage you used one day back? For Wild Blue, generally after a month. Don't forget, though, that the day your usage disappears, more is being added on for that day's use. Every day you are removing usage and heaping more on. HughesNet is daily, meaning you get full usage back after one day.
Services like Wild Blue like to forget to mention usage limits to the unsuspecting. At least until it is too late and your Internet has slowed down to snail mode. They do allow you to check your limit, but the little online graph does little to help you understand or keep track. It would be nice to know when you spent a huge day downloading so you can keep an eye on when it will drop off the usage.
#2 Reason to Avoid Satellite Internet: Cost
Cable Internet can offer you those deals where you get phone, Internet, and TV for one price. With satellite Internet that isn't so much an option. Directv does have a deal with Wild Blue, but they just combine your bill. With satellite Internet you are paying more for limited use. Wild Blue's middle plan of 12,000mb use a month costs $70. At HughesNet, you will pay $70-$80 for 425mb a day. Most cable companies will offer you bundles that include phone, Internet, and TV for a discounted price.
Also, if you accidentally go over your usage limit you will still be paying for it while you wait for the usage to drop down to usable quality.
Of course, that doesn't include the set up costs. With Wild Blue, expect to pay at least $200 to have the satellite installed and up and running. They will even charge you for a pole to put it on. With HughesNet, you can expect to pay up to $400 or more. They offer rebates to lower the cost, but how many people bother with those? All of them require a contract of 18 months to 2 years, making them difficult to get rid of if you decide you don't like satellite Internet.
#3 Reason to Avoid Satellite Internet: The Weather
Anyone with satellite TV knows the feeling of watching your favorite show or sports event, and then it suddenly starts to rain. You hope the rain stops or stays light, while you stare at the screen, just waiting for those evil lines to distort the screen and then your show disappears altogether. All you can do is wait for the rain to stop or slow down.
Expect the exact same thing with satellite Internet. Rain, clouds, and heavy snow will all affect your Internet. You can lose service completely until the weather clears. That means, if you depend on the satellite Internet for your phone service, you will be out of luck. Of course, this helps you lower your usage for a month from then, but does little if you are working or watching a movie. Also, you're still paying that huge monthly fee for Internet you can't use.