Satellite Internet – It’s Back

Rich Tehrani : Communications and Technology Blog -
Rich Tehrani
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Satellite Internet – It’s Back

I remember in the mid nineties – was it 1995? -- I was at an Internet World show in LA and I met with people from DirecPC, a division of DirecTV who extolled the virtues of browsing by satellite. I was intrigued but never tried the service. According to the WSJ a new effort is underway from a number of companies to provide us once again with satellite Internet service. When I say “us” I mean people in rural areas as prices for such services are not cheap.

WildBlue Communications in fact, one of such providers is going to charge $299-$479 for equipment plus $49.95 for basic service. The download speed of the service should be around 1.5 megabits per second. DirecWay (formerly DirecPC) charges slightly more for their service as well as their installation.

The problem with Satellite – and cable for that matter, is upload speed which ranges from 128 kbps to 200 kbps for WildBlue.

The rural market could see competition drive prices down. If broadband over power line becomes reality and WiMAX really happens, we can all expect lower prices for broadband. I trust the FCC will be doing everything they can to foster a strong competitive environment for broadband.

Many of us talk about VoIP competition and how important it is. While this is true, it is really broadband competition that is needed to ensure a vibrant VoIP market. Having the cable companies and LECs as the dominant broadband providers is not the best solution for consumers. We need more competition and I welcome satellite as the renewed way to access the high speed internet.

If you are interested in learning more about broadband over power lines, check out BPL Today.

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