Possessing an internet connection was considered a luxury in the 1990s and even at the turn of the century.
We can now get internet service in various ways, and most of us can conveniently connect to the network via mobile networks, network cables, telecommunication networks, or some other method.
More gadgets are bonding to the internet, and we will see more Netizens in the coming years; kudos to an ever-improving framework that provides web access in every corner of the world.
While most internet connections today rely on transmission lines, we enjoy surfing through a communication network that provides a more consistent and predictable connection than wired networks.
Satellite internet is a wireless connection that consists of three satellite dishes: one at the internet service provider’s center, one in earth orbit, and the Earth station at your residence.
Aside from the satellite dish, you will also need a satellite modems and cables running to generate a satellite network.
Once all the counterparts are hooked up, the ISP will send the internet signal to the satellite dish, transmitting it to you.
Every request (new page, browse, messaging, etc.) is routed to the dish in earth orbit and then to the ISP’s center. The completed request is then transmitted through space to your dish and your computer.
But can the satellite in space be the ultimate answer to all our network needs? To understand that, let us dive into the advantages and cons of satellite internet.
Table of Contents
- Advantages of satellite internet
- Disadvantages of satellite internet
- Summary of advantages and disadvantages of satellite internet
Advantages of satellite internet
If you are residing in remote locations where fiber-optic or cable internet is not accessible, you can rely on satellite internet.
In this section, we will take a deeper look at some of the advantage of satellite internet.
1. Available Everywhere
Cell towers are not accessible in the middle of a desert or on the summit of Mount Everest, or in any other faraway location. Thus, wired internet connections are not usable.
But this technology makes no difference where you are because you can always get satellite internet anywhere on the planet as long as you are within the geostationary satellite’s line of vision.
Even in the middle of the sea, you can still enjoy your favorite shows and socialize with friends.
If you have suitable transceivers, send and receive commands and stay in continuous interaction with the satellites in orbit.
A single satellite station can interact with satellites and ultimately provide wired internet access to all of the residents in the territory, even in remote areas. All residences can have their base station to access the internet.
2. Suitable For Low To Moderate Online Activities
The satellite technologies’ speeds is slower than any other internet connection. Individuals are usually more predisposed toward activities such as streaming, downloading, and playing games, which is why they choose the best DSL or cable connection.
You won’t be able to do everything regarding satellite internet, but it will keep you connected.
You can, for example, check your email, read online articles, make a website, or download PDFs.
These activities are perfect for anyone with a low or moderate internet connection.
3. Less Costly Than Mobile Hotspots
Mobile hotspots are more costly than satellite internet. If you want to minimize your expenses, subscribe to a satellite internet provider and set aside time for online activities.
You can perform regular online activities with satellite internet without having an additional burden or incurring additional costs.
4. Instant Installation
Satellite connections can be deployed and installed in seconds. It does not require any assembly, and the complete package, including a WiFi router, tripod mount, and power supply, can be assembled immediately upon request. You can also install the equipment yourself if you are technically inclined.
5. Reliability Of Connection
Satellite internet is accessed via a dish, a modem, and a correlation between the satellite and the dish. As a result, the connection is not shared among multiple consumers.
There is little chance of satellite internet outages because satellite internet plans exist independently of terrestrial infrastructure.
There is a low chance of a network outage if your modem and other equipment are recharged.
Disadvantages of satellite internet
But, let’s be honest: satellite internet isn’t all tulips and cheesecake. Satellite service has some severe drawbacks, as listed below.
Time delay is one of the most crucial components of internet use, second only to speed. That is the time it takes to send a data packet and arrive at its desired location.
The lesser the latency issue, the stronger the internet interaction. Most users will desire low latency in the future when the Internet of Things (IoT) predominates.
Because the geosynchronous satellite is at such high altitudes, the transmissions will take longer to reach the satellites and then to the base station.
If the packet must pass through multiple servers, the problem will aggravate because it will have to pass through the satellite several times before arriving at its location.
If you want to play multiplayer games with your mates, forget about it with the current satellite speeds.
2. Sensitive To Clogging
The pathway of the satellite internet signal is affected by the weather. The signal may be weak in bad weather due to rain, storms, or wind gusts, and you may lose the internet connection.
The wind can directly threaten the satellite antenna, disrupting the connection.
Another significant disadvantage is that consumers must have a better sight of the satellite to receive a good signal.
Trees, buildings, and other setbacks can block the satellite signal, making the service unsuitable.
The location of the antenna is essential because it influences how well the service is running.
3. Data Restrictions
Another common argument among satellite internet users is data limitations, which constitute the most sluggish speeds.
Most satellite companies limit your data usage to a small amount per month—between 10 GB and 150 GB.
If you exceed this limit, you must either pay more for additional data or accept substantially decreased speeds.
If you want to know how much data you will need, consider that the average American household uses more than 510 GB per month.
That is more than double the data you can get on even the most expensive satellite scheme from many providers, which collectively account for many satellite users’ disillusionment.
4. Tough To Get A Service Provider
Depending on the region, finding a company that provides satellite internet services can be complex.
There are several areas where no network operator is accessible to provide you with a satellite internet connection.
You will be bound by contracts even after you find a service provider. In most instances, you will be unable to change your plan or discontinue your satellite internet connection on the spur of the moment.
Most satellite connection plans have a lengthy lock-in period, meaning you will have to use the broadband for several days before moving to a new internet access configuration.
It is primarily due to the high cost of establishing a ground station and providing you with satellite connectivity.
5. VPN Incompatibility
VPNs do not work with satellite internet. VPNs necessitate high bandwidth data transfers (both upload and download).
They require low latency and high bandwidth configuration, which is the polar opposite of what satellite internet provides.
For all those VPN users, satellite internet might not be your cup of tea!
Summary of advantages and disadvantages of satellite internet
|Suitable For Low To Moderate Online Activities|
|Less Costly Than Mobile Hotspots|
|Reliability Of Connection|
|Sensitive To Clogging|
|Tough To Get A Service Provider|
As you can see, the disadvantages of satellite internet far outweigh the advantages. It might not be the best or most dependable option for most internet users, and it is costly.
Some of the costs may be due to technology’s supply and demand. Because there isn’t much (internet) supply in the middle of nowhere, demand (and costs) will be high to portray this.
That being said, it is difficult to grumble about or criticize satellite internet when it is your only option (if you have other options such as DSL or cable, you should choose one of those instead).
It is quicker than dial-up and can connect to the internet, where other connections cannot reach.
The bottom line is that satellite internet is preferable to not having any internet access at all. Every technology has advantages and disadvantages.
However, if the benefits of technology outweigh the drawbacks, we should embrace it. Ultimately, it is all a matter of where you are and how much you need!
(Last Updated on August 29, 2022)