Monday, October 29, 2012

2012 Best Satellite Internet Service Comparisons and Reviews



Satellite Internet Review

Why Use High-Speed Satellite Internet?

If you’re in a rural area, you may not have many options for internet service. High speed satellite internet allows you to say goodbye to dial-up internet access. No more using phone lines to access the internet or waiting for webpages to load. Satellite broadband internet websites load many times faster than dial-up. Although cable and DSL are faster than satellite, if you live in an area that doesn’t offer the faster options, satellite might be the best thing available. Learn more by reading articles on high-speed satellite internet. As long as you have a clear view of the southern sky where the provider can stick the small satellite, and you have a PC or Mac, you can access the internet.


High-Speed Satellite Internet: What to Look For

The high-speed satellite internet companies we reviewed, such as HughesNet, WildBlue and MyBlueDish, offer service for the 48 contiguous states. Some of the best satellite internet providers also offer coverage for Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and surrounding areas. Some of the companies manufacture their own equipment and sell service plans. Other companies resell the equipment and services. Law requires them to sell the satellite broadband plans at the same prices but they can include additional fees or discounts. We've looked at everything these satellite internet providers offer so you can compare satellite broadband services. At TopTenREVIEWS We Do the Research So You Don’t Have To.™
Speed & Threshold
In this section we considered the download and upload speeds of each product. None of the satellite internet providers we reviewed guarantee the speed of their products. They only give the maximum speed the plan can reach. During high traffic hours, your speeds may be lower.
We also considered bandwidth allowance. Each satellite internet provider has a Fair Access Policy that restricts how much of the bandwidth each customer can use. We calculated the bandwidth cap for a 30-day period to help you compare amounts. If you pass the allowed threshold, your provider will decrease the speed of your system for as long as 30 days per infringement. Some providers offer free downloading times in the middle of the night.
One downside of satellite broadband internet is its high latency. You won’t notice it while web surfing but you will in real-time gaming, video streaming and while using VoIP applications. It also doesn’t work well with virtual private networks (VPN).
Help & Support
Our biggest concern regarding help and support was the tech and customer support the providers offered. We looked for 24/7 support, helpful and knowledgeable representatives and prompt service. We also looked for companies that have online chat features and email addresses for customer service that potential customers can use to ask questions. Those who manufacture their own equipment and train their technical staff are also higher on our list of great satellite internet providers.
We were more impressed with providers who offer a customer support website for their customers. We also looked for bandwidth threshold meters, billing information, diagnostic tools and other features. We weren’t so impressed with those companies who had outdated information on their websites.
Additional Features
Free one-year anti-virus and anti-spyware software is one of the nice features that come with most of the satellite internet packages. After the free period, you can opt to pay a monthly fee to continue the service. Some providers offer blogging tools, links to internet safety tips and dial-up service options. Most of the services we reviewed also allow you to customize your homepage.
Purchasing Options
Some providers give you the option of purchasing or leasing the satellite internet equipment. If you purchase the equipment, they usually offer a one-year limited warranty. If you lease the equipment, there’s an additional fee. Many of the providers we reviewed allow you to pay the lease upfront or monthly.
As you compare pricing information, read the small print. Some providers only offer discounted prices for several months. Talk to providers and resellers about whether they offer mail-in rebates and discounts, and what you must do to receive them.
Find out about all the fees before you sign up for a service. Free installation typically only applies to standard installation. Ask about activation fees, return policies and cancellation charges.