For some users living in areas with limited broadband services, Satellite may be their only choice. A service called HughesNet (used to be called “DirecWay”) provides satellite Internet service that is received through a dish installed on the roof of a user’s home. For some of you, this may sound like a good idea, but be forewarnedÃ¢Â?Â¦ it is perhaps one of the worst decisions you’ll ever make. A couple years ago, my family wanted high speed Internet and there was no cable or DSL services available in our area in the suburbs of Chicago. We were desperate for speed, and getting sick of using dial-up. We ordered Satellite Internet from DirecTV and although we got our high speed Internet, it was not without a price – no pun intended. We had many problems with it. I’m writing this article here to share with you why it was such a hassle. Here are ten reasons why ordering satellite Internet service for your home is not a good ideaÃ¢Â?Â¦
1. Expensive – Why pay as much for satellite Internet service as you would for other broadband options that are a lot better?
2. The dish – It’s satellite Internet, so you need to get a dish installed JUST to use the Internet. The setup fee is $150 – $225. Already have satellite TV? Well, you’ll need another one right next to it. What a great way to show off to the neighbors, huh? Yea right.
3. Technical Support – It’s decent at best, but every time I called in to fix a problem with satellite Internet (which was every other day) they would tell me something completely different. One day they’ll tell you to configure your network settings a certain way, the next they’ll tell you to reset the settings, then finally you call in and they tell you the feature is not supported or compatible with their service.
4. Compatibility – Almost NOTHING is compatible with satellite Internet. Do you use America Online? Good luck. Do you have networked computers? That’s going to take a lot of effort. Every time we set up some new service to use satellite Internet, we would have problems that took a minimum of 2-3 days to fix. We’re not computer illiterate either, my family has been troubleshooting technical issues for years, and every time we dealt with satellite Internet service, it would take hours upon hours to fix the issue.
5. Horrible upload speed – Do you enjoy playing online games? Not gonna happen with satellite Internet. The upload speed is terrible. Sure, it’s possible, but the experience is equivalent to being connected through regular dial-up modem.
6. Bad weather – If it snows or rains, your reception will be extremely low and may not work at all. Kind of counter-intuitive on a stormy day when you’re stuck inside and you can’t even browse the web!
7. The signal cuts in and out. It will tell you the signal strength is excellent, but the Internet still won’t work. Sometimes you have to reboot the computer and wait 15 minutes before you got any reception back.
8. You need a clear view of the southern sky. Not a big deal, but if you’ve got big trees surrounding your house, you’re in trouble.
9. Low Speed – When it’s all good and working, the Internet speed itself is still ridiculous. They cap you out at 700kbps. They call this the “Fair Access Policy” (a.k.a. FAP. Any regular Internet forum user will get a good laugh at that.) That’s NOTHING compared to cable and DSL services, which offer anywhere from 1,000kbps-10,000kbps. HughesNet does offer a “professional” plan for $10 extra a month that upgrades you to a whole 1,000kbps per month! Whoo-hoo!
10. MAC user? Well, you’re in luck. It is supportedÃ¢Â?Â¦ unless you’re using an operating system older than 10.1, then you are out of luck.
Well, there you have it. Ten reasons why NOT to order satellite Internet service. It’s pricey, it’s a hassle, it’s limited, it messes up your roof, and you don’t get any special deals. The ONLY reason you should ever, ever, ever consider using this service is if you have absolutely NO broadband options in your area whatsoeverÃ¢Â?Â¦ and you’re desperate for something better than dial-up speed. Oh, and you don’t play games and have a clear view of the southern sky. But you knowÃ¢Â?Â¦ that’s no big deal… (Ha!)