- Internet & the Web
Hughesnet Internet For Rural Area
Many living in rural areas of America struggle to catch up with what the rest of America take for granted. We are behind on a lot for one main reason. Lack of internet option. Broadband doesn't exist for most of rural residents, which leave us with the only option available-satellite internet.
Why is Satellite Internet So Bad?
Having no other competitions around, these satellite internet providers like to prey on their customers. They charge us a huge amount of money each month for very little choice of the so call 'internet.' When something goes wrong with your equipments, they want a huge upfront fee before they send someone to look at it.
If you live in rural area, you can understand. If you're considering relocating to the middle of nowhere and want high speed internet, you may want to reconsider, or at least research the options first.
There are two internet providers where I live (rural Georgia) that I know of. When I moved out here, the first thing I needed was power, follow by internet. I made the mistake of not researching the company I was about to sign up with, since I was in a hurry to get connected. I needed the internet for work and school.
Anyway, I didn't take the time to find search for any other providers (there's only one other) nor did I read everything in the contract (I have short attention span and my comprehension isn't great). The fault is mine I know.
The provider I went with is Hughesnet Satellite Internet. At the time, I believe I signed up for their $50 plan which was "50GB" worth of internet. I had no idea what it all meant since I just moved from the city and took the unlimited internet for granted. What that $50 plan was 50GB of high speed (UP TO 12mbps) internet, after the 50 gigabytes is used up, you're stuck with SUPER slow internet speed (1mbps). Good enough to slowly browse the internet, as long as it doesn't gifs or videos.
Here's the catch though. Out of that 50GB of high speed data, only 10 GB worth was for regular hours (or peak hours as they call it) usage. This would be between 8AM to 2AM. If you use that 10 GB of data during that time, you're out of luck. The other 40 GB of data is for use between 2AM to 8AM. Basically, when everyone's sleeping or heading off to work.
Between my boyfriend and I, we would be lucky if we have any data left to use by the end of the first week.
Why Not Cancel the Service?
As mentioned earlier, I needed the internet for work and school. He needs it to keep in touch with family back in city (800 miles away).
I checked the other provider (Execede), which provided similar services but was SLIGHTLY better. For their limited data plans, their peak hours were 5AM to 12AM. Their late night hours (12AM to 5AM), were unmetered, giving you unlimited usage. It would have been great for me since I often stay up to 4AM doing schoolwork. They recently started offering unlimited data plans, with special rates for some months. If that's available in your area, I would check them out first.
Unfortunately, I couldn't break my contract with the number one satellite internet in America (sarcasm right there) because of their WHOOPING $400 termination fee. They basically trap you in their crappy services for 2 years. So I 'upgraded' my service to their 60GB plan (well over $100 after taxes and fees). Still only 10GB during peak hours and 50GB when I sleep. Even then, my boyfriend and I still use it up in a week... My parents get faster internet (unlimited data at 30 mbps) for about $75 a month!
If you live in the city and see Hughesnet advertised, steer clear of any deals!
All Hughesnet is good for is basic browsing (reading emails, online shopping and checking social medias). With youtube and netflix, you would have to limit yourself. It's not for those who stream videos, play online gaming, or those who depend on it for work and school.
Future for Rural Internet Users?
I just read this morning that the US Court of Appeals favor of internet equal-access rules 2-to-1. This prohibits provider from giving or selling access to speedy internet to certain internet services over others. However, I've only read mentions of broadband and nowhere does any of the articles I found mention satellite or rural internet. Greedy providers are fighting this new law.
On a separate topic published just last month, it mentioned the 'FCC (Federal Communications Commission) is making another $2.15 billion available for rural broadband projects, and it's trying to direct at least some of that money toward building services with gigabit download speeds and unlimited data.'
Perhaps there's hope for us rural residents in the near future to catch up with the rest of America.