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There are many companies that offer satellite services. You will get a very comprehensive list by clicking on the link to "Google's list of Satellite Access Providers" at the top of the forum. But there are basically two major providers that provide the vast majority of consumer satellite broadband services. They are Hughes Network Systems which provides the DirecPC/DirecWay services and Gilat that provides Starband. Hughes uses "Powered By" partners (AKA "VAR" or "value added reseller") to re-sell their services. Examples of those would be Earthlink, LinCsat (in Canada), Ground Control and Skycasters. While systems purchased from a "powered by" partner may be assigned a transponder and gateway that are unique to that partner, the service is provided by Hughes. Technical support for the product, at least at the lower tiers, is provided by the partner.

The list of providers below was compiled by Satellite Forum Users


It is not necessarily complete nor does it imply a preference for any particular provider. The prices listed should be taken as ballpark figures as prices and offers vary by provider and are constantly changing.

Provider name: DirecWay Standard
    •FAP Limit: 169 MB (4 hours)•Monthly Cost: $59.99•Installation Cost:•ACTIVATION FEE: WAIVED•Hardware Cost: $599.98•Term Commitment (contract): 12 months•Early Termination Penalty: $399.99

Provider name: DirecWay Professional
    •FAP Limit: 350 MB (4 hours)•Monthly Cost: $89.99•Installation Cost:•ACTIVATION FEE: $100 •Hardware Cost: $599.98•Term Commitment (contract): 12 months•Early Termination Penalty: $399.99•* Public IP included

Provider name: Earthlink
    •FAP Limit: 169 MB (4 hours)•Monthly Cost: $69.95•Installation Cost: $249.95•Hardware Cost: $649.95•Term Commitment (contract): 12 months•Early Termination Penalty: $399.99•* 20 hours/mo backup dialup included•* 8 mailboxes

Provider name: Skycasters - DW4020
    •FAP Limit: (information not available on website)•Monthly Cost: $119•Installation Cost: $200•Hardware Cost: $999 (on sale)•Term Commitment (contract): (information not available on website)•Early Termination Penalty: $500 •*Public IP available for an extra $10/month.

Provider name: Ground Control
    •No FAP - DW4020 (does not appear to be available any longer) •FAP Limit: 500 Mb - DW4000;•800 & 1000 Mb FAP available too•Monthly Cost: $115 - DW4020; •Monthly Cost: $99 - DW4000•Installation Cost:•Hardware Cost:•Term Commitment (contract):•Early Termination Penalty: (information not available on website)•*Public IP included at no extra charge.

Provider name: Optistreams - 4020
    •FAP Limit: 500 mb (in 4 hours)•Monthly Cost: $99•Installation Cost: $200•Hardware Cost: $1395•Term Commitment (contract):•Early Termination Penalty: •*Public IP available for an extra $10/month.

Provider name: net2dish
    •FAP Limit: 500 mb - DW4020 & DW 4000•Monthly Cost: $95 (paid quarterly) or $105 (paid monthly) - DW4020;
    •Monthly Cost: $79/$89 - DW4000•Installation Cost: $199 - DW4020 & DW4000•Hardware Cost: $1199 - DW4020; •Hardware Cost: $499 - DW4000•Term Commitment (contract):•Early Termination Penalty: •*Public IP available for an extra $10/month.

Provider name: Starband
    •FAP Limit: Starband does not seem to have a FAP policy, but may have a Reasonable Use Policy•Monthly Cost: $39.99 to $169.99 (depending on equipment, level of service and term of contract)•Installation Cost: set by the installer•Hardware Cost: Starband 360 - $199.99 + S/H (3-year contract) - $699.99 + S/H (with no contract)•Hardware Cost: Starband 480 - $599.99 + S/H (3-year contract) - $899.99 + S/H (no contract)•Term Commitment (contract): 0 to 3 years)•Early Termination Penalty: Up to $599 for cancelling within the first year, to $99 for cancelling in the third year of a three-year contract•*Public IP included with small office plans.

Provider name: Internet Satellite Platform (Isat)
(resellers, Cband, IWC, Isomedia, and others) - one-way satellite service
    •FAP Limit: incredibly restrictive Reasonable Use Policy (read the fine print)•Monthly Cost: varies by plan, but is roughly $30 - $50•Installation Cost: ?•Hardware Cost: $125•Term Commitment (contract): ?•Early Termination Penalty: ?


Other Providers
WildBlue - now providing service
LinCsat - Canada
C-Com - Canada (also offers mobile satellite Internet)
GeoStar Satellite - DW4020 and mobile systems
MotoSat - mobile satellite systems (including Internet)
Galaxy Broadband Communications - Canada
Today's Television - Puerto Rico
O'Rourke Distributing - Puerto Rico
AgriStar - geared towards agricultural users
National Rural Telecommunications Cooperative - offers DirecWay and Starband (geared towards rural customers)
World Communication Center - Offers DW 4000 & 4020, Starband 360 and 480 and mobile Satellite Internet

Feedback received on this FAQ entry:
  • Skycasters has not re-sold HughesNet service for over three years. Skycasters is a iDirect HUB operator, located in Akron, Ohio. Skycasters provides high end business grade Satellite Internet solutions.

    2008-12-29 19:15:05



Expand got feedback?

by PetDude See Profile edited by seagreen See Profile
last modified: 2005-12-18 14:24:51