For people living in rural or under populated areas, the choices for an internet connection are usually between Dial-Up and Satellite Internet. Is Satellite Internet Good? This article takes a look at Satellite Internet and weighs its pros and cons.
What is Satellite Internet?
First of all, we will take a look at what it actually is. It is a type of wireless connection that uses satellites put in space to provide an internet connection. In setting up a Satellite connection, you will usually need a satellite dish, a Modem, and a cable connecting your Modem to the satellite dish. If you want wireless internet within your home, you will need a router.
How does it work?
After setting up your satellite dish and connecting your Modem to it, your dish will then send a signal to a satellite dish in space, which in turn sends it to your Internet service provider (ISP)’s dish. Your ISP will process this signal, send the reply back to the dish in space, which sends it back to your dish for processing by your Modem.
The satellite dish in space acts as a middleman or a bridge between your dish and your ISP’s dish. The satellite dish only transfers data between your dish and your ISP’s dish. Satellite Internet is useful in areas without Broadband because it allows you to access the internet without having to pay for a fiber optic cable to be routed from the closest major city with Broadband to your town.
Now that we’ve seen how it works, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of using a Satellite Internet connection.
Pros of Using Satellite Internet
- For people living in rural or obscure areas, it is a much more viable and cheaper option than using Broadband, which may require the routing of fiber optic cables from major towns into rural areas.
- It doesn’t require a telephone line to work. This is especially useful for people who are in places without access to telephone lines.
- It is several times faster than Dial-Up. This can be considered the main reason of using Satellite Internet in some situations.
Cons of Using Satellite Internet
- It is very expensive when compared to other options like cable, DSL, and Dial-Up. This is due to cost of setting up and maintaining a satellite dish in your home as well as costs set up by your ISP.
- The weather largely influences the stability and speed of the satellite connection. Strong winds and thunderstorms means your internet connection will suffer greatly.
- High Ping rate. This is due to the lengthy process of sending a signal to a satellite in space and waiting for a reply to come from your ISP through the same satellite in space back to your dish. This can negatively affect services that require low Ping rates such as online gaming.
- Minor obstructions will negatively affect your connection.
So Is Satellite Internet Good?
Not for most people. Satellite Internet has far more disadvantages than advantages and should really only be used when there’s no other better available method of connecting to the internet. The high cost of maintenance and the relatively low speed (compared to Broadband) make it a last resort option.