Which Satellite Provider Is Right For Me?
In the United States, there are two main providers of satellite internet. These are Exede by ViaSat and HughesNet’s Gen4. Both of them offer the widest selection in terms of area. Thanks to these two providers, it is almost certain that every home in the United States can now access a high speed internet connection. Both of these providers offer very similar services and similar speeds with their average download speeds around 15 Mbps, over 200 times faster than dial-up and a much more consistent option than DSL.
So the question is: which provider is right for me? Well first, one should examine availability. After that, it is mostly a matter of preference. Take a look below at the qualities that each company brings.
HughesNet - A Rich History
HughesNet has been around for 40+ years and has been offering satellite internet services for about a quarter of that. With over one billion dollars invested in the satellite communication industry, HughesNet is always looking for ways to up the game for its competitors and provide their customers with top notch internet! They are currently the most used satellite internet provider in North America as they eclipsed one million active satellite internet users back in September of 2014.
In 2012, HughesNet launched the EchoStar XVII (aka, “Jupiter”) satellite which is currently the satellite that allows them to provide 15 Mbps speeds to their customers. This satellite is known as Jupiter 1 and increased available speeds to their customers immediately. The speeds went from a DSL-like 1.5 Mbps to 15 Mbps which is now competitive with the speeds one would receive from cable internet!
Exede Internet Service Delivers
Exede (formerly known as WildBlue or Wild Blue) is a much younger company, but its parent company, ViaSat, is not. ViaSat was originally founded in 1986 and has since blossomed into the almost two billion dollar company they are today with a recent revenue boost with the creation of the ViaSat-1 satellite launch in 2012. Originally, ViaSat only carried WildBlue to customers. These speeds were groundbreaking for their time, but soon became out of date. ViaSat, in an attempt to offer better internet service to their customers launched a new satellite, ViaSat-1. This is the current satellite that is used to deliver internet access to Exede’s almost 500,000 customers across North America!
Exede is all about reliability. They won the FCC award for most consistent speeds in comparison to their advertised speeds. This means that Exede is the most consistent satellite internet provider when it comes to delivering on their promise of 12 Mbps download speed. Exede assures its customers that 12 Mbps is not the fastest their service can go, but that this is the average that they can expect. At times, Exede has been known to reach download speeds of up to 20 Mbps!
Both Exede and HughesNet also offers voice over IP (VOIP) services through the feature/brand names of Exede Voice and HughesNet Voice.