2016 Satellite Internet Providers Review

2016 has been a busy year for satellite internet providers. Many companies have renewed plans offered for consumers.
This review covers top 4 providers offering best deals on the market today.
Hover the bars on the chart below for more information.

Starting 2016, Exede launched new option with download speeds up to 25 Mb per second. This is a real achievement, 10Mbps ahead of closest competitors. This option is called 'Boost 25' and it can be added to any plan for extra $10 per month. Currently available to state of Florida and West Coast, soon to be available nationwide.

Liberty plans come with a Priority Data allowance you may use during your monthly measurement period. If you use all of your Priority Data, you will receive Liberty Pass until the end of your monthly measurement period. Liberty Pass speeds will be slower than Priority Data speeds, will not support video streaming on multiple devices and may not support streaming of high definition video. Liberty Pass speeds will vary based on time of day and your geographic location, and may be extremely slow when the network is busy, typically in the evening hours (about 5:00 p.m. — 2:00 a.m. local time), which may greatly impair your ability to use the internet. Liberty Pass users will receive lower priority on the network than subscribers who have not exceeded their data allowance or other data threshold, and heavier users of Liberty Pass may be slowed to a greater extent than lighter users of Liberty Pass.
Free standard installation fee promotion available only to new Exede12 customers in limited areas who order service during the promotion period. One-time standard installation fee of $99.99 will be credited via an instant rebate of $99.99, which will be reflected on the customer’s first bill.
Boost 25 only applies to data used within a customer’s data allowance or other data threshold. Boost 25 does not apply when Liberty Plan customers are using Liberty Pass, when Freedom Plan customers have used in excess of 150 GB of monthly data, or when Evolution Plan customers are accessing web pages and email after such customers use their monthly data allowance.
Freedom Plan customers who use greater than 150 GB of data during their monthly billing period will experience reduced speeds until the end of their monthly billing period, and may be asked to reduce their monthly usage below 150 GB or transition to another service plan. If customer does neither, ViaSat may terminate customer’s service.
Exede EasyCare is $5.99 per month. For new Internet customers who purchase EasyCare, the monthly charge is waived for the first 90 days of service. If a customer cancels EasyCare within 90 days after purchase, the customer may be charged the standard rate that would have been applicable for each service call made at the customer’s service address during that 90-day period. Re-enrollment in EasyCare may be restricted for up to 180 days after cancellation. EasyCare is not available to customers in Alaska and Hawaii. Additional terms and conditions applicable to EasyCare are set forth in the Exede EasyCare Plan Addendum to the Customer Agreement available at www.exede.com/legal.
You may also qualify for Free standard installation in select locations. Limited-time offer valid to new Lease subscribers only. Not valid with Purchase option. Please, contact Hughes to see if you qualify.
Customers with SmartBrowsing-enabled plans who have exceeded their monthly Anytime allowance can still send and receive email and browse the Internet. It is important to note, however, that uploading or downloading large files, including video and audio embedded in web pages or attached to emails, will reduce speeds. Visit legal.HughesNet.com for complete details.

High download speed is important but even more important is Data Allowance each company and plan is offering. Each company has a policy to limit or slow down your internet connection once you exceed your data. HughesNet and dishNet will shut down your service under basic plans until next billing cycle comes and data counter resets. More expensive plans of HughesNet and dishNet, and any plan from Exede and Wildblue will slow you down but your service will continue to work.

Among the rest Exede and HughesNet are competing the most. Hughes offers 50 Gb of data at night time hours (2am - 8am). This is great for downloading a movie or large file. Exede, on the other hand give much more data upfront and gives you 'Liberty Pass' to stay online after all monthly data is used at good download speeds 1-5 Mbps.

Provider
Monthly Price
regular
$5999–$14999 $5999–$14999 $4999–$8999 $4999–$7999
Download Speed 12–25 Mbps 12 Mbps 5–15 Mbps 5–10 Mbps
Upload Speed 3 Mbps 3 Mbps 1–2 Mbps 1 Mbps
Anytime Data 10–150 GB 10–30 GB 5–50 GB 10–60 GB
Bonus Data Unlimited/Slower speeds Unlimited/Slower speeds 50 GB
(2am - 8am)
none for basic plan,
Unlimited/Slower speeds
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EXEDE

Monthly Price

$5999–$14999

Download Speed

upto 12–25 Mbps

Upload Speed

upto 3 Mbps

Anytime Data

10–150 GB

Bonus Data

Unlimited/Slower speeds

Read full review

WILDBLUE

Monthly Price

$5999–$14999

Download Speed

upto 12 Mbps

Upload Speed

upto 3 Mbps

Anytime Data

10–30 GB

Bonus Data

Unlimited/Slower speeds

HughesNet

Monthly Price

$4999–$8999

Download Speed

5 - 12 Mbps

Upload Speed

1 - 2 Mbps

Anytime Data

5–50 GB

Bonus Data

50 GB
(2am - 8am)

Read full review

dishNET

Monthly Price

$4999–$7999

Download Speed

5 - 10 Mbps

Upload Speed

1 Mbps

Anytime Data

10–60 GB

Bonus Data

none for basic plan,
Unlimited/Slower speeds

Best Satellite Internet Providers

  • Pricing:$49.99–$149.99
  • Anytime Data:10–150 GB
  • Bonus Data:Unlimited @
    1-5 Mbps speeds
  • Max Download:12–25 Mbps
  • Max Upload:3 Mbps
  • Equipment Fee:$9.99 Mo
    $199.99 prepaid for 24mo
    $299.99 prepaid lifetime
  • Contract:24 Mo

Read full review

Exede Satellite Internet Service

Exede is the industry leading satellite internet provider. It offers fastest downloading and uploading speeds.

All plans include Liberty Pass.

Liberty Pass will let you keep using the service at slower speeds once anytime data is all used for the current month. This is a much more user friendly option compared to HughesNet night time 'Free Zone'. If you are a fan of streaming or downloading movies or videos, you anytime data will be gone fast.

Exede introduced Freedom 150 plan with whooping 150 GB anytime data each month. That is 3 GB of data per day, good for downloading 2 full lenght movies.

For just extra $10 a month Boost 25 option may be added to any existing or new plan. This option will boost your max download speed to respectful 25 Mbps. Boost 25 currently available to subscribers located in West Coast and state of Florida.

Exede Plans

Plan/Details Liberty 12 Liberty 18 Liberty 30
Advertised Price $49.99/Mo $69.99/Mo $99.99/Mo
Regular Price $69.99/Mo $99.99/Mo $149.99/Mo
Max Download Speed 12–25 Mbps 12–25 Mbps 12-25 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 3 Mbps 3 Mbps 3 Mbps
Anytime Data Allowance 12 GB 18 GB 30 GB
Bonus Data Allowance Unlimited
1-5 Mbps download speed
Unlimited
1-5 Mbps download speed
Unlimited
1-5 Mbps download speed
Options Description
Free Installation Available only to new Exede12 customers in limited areas.
* No charge for pole mounts on service ordered directly from ViaSat through 844-605-2422 toll-free number or online order form at exede.com
Boost 25 Boost your max download speed to 25 Mbps
Freedom Plan Get 150 GB anytime data every month.
EasyCare All required service calls at no extra charge. Normally $95 per service call. Only $5.99/mo. No charge first 90 days!
Liberty 12
Advertised Price $49.99/Mo
Regular Price $69.99/Mo
Max Down Speed 12–25 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 3 Mbps
Anytime Data 12 GB
Bonus Data Unlimited
1-5 Mbps download speed
Liberty 18
Advertised Price $69.99/Mo
Regular Price $99.99/Mo
Max Down Speed 12–25 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 3 Mbps
Anytime Data 18 GB
Bonus Data Unlimited
1-5 Mbps download speed
Liberty 30
Advertised Price $99.99/Mo
Regular Price $149.99/Mo
Max Down Speed 12–25 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 3 Mbps
Anytime Data 30 GB
Bonus Data Unlimited
1-5 Mbps download speed
Exede Options
Free Installation
Boost 25
Freedom Plan
EasyCare

  • Pricing:$49.99–$89.99
  • Anytime Data:5–50 GB
  • Bonus Data:50 GB
    (2am - 8am)
  • Max Download:5–15 Mbps
  • Max Upload:1-2 Mbps
  • Equipment Fee:$9.99 Mo
    $399.98 prepaid lifetime
  • Contract:24 Mo

Read full review

HughesNet Satellite Internet Service

HughesNet Gen4 is latest fourth-generation high-speed satellite Internet service, designed to give you more of what you need, including dramatically improved performance and support for high-bandwidth applications like social networking, watching videos and listening to music.

All plans include 50 GB of night time bonus data available between 2 - 8 AM.

All plans except 'Choice' come with SmartBrowsing option enabled. This feature will let you keep using the service at slower speeds once anytime data is all used up.

You may also qualify for Free standard installation in select locations. Limited-time offer valid to new Lease subscribers only. Not valid with Purchase option.

HughesNet Gen4 Plans

Plan/Details Choice Prime Plus Pro Plus Ultra
Advertised Price $39.99/Mo $39.99/Mo $69.99/Mo $79.99/Mo
Regular Price $49.99/Mo $59.99/Mo $79.99/Mo $89.99/Mo
Max Download Speed 5 Mbps 10 Mbps 10 Mbps 15 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 1 Mbps 1 Mbps 2 Mbps 2 Mbps
Anytime Data Allowance 5 GB 10 GB 15 GB 50 GB
Bonus Data Allowance 50 GB
(2am - 8am)
50 GB
(2am - 8am)
50 GB
(2am - 8am)
50 GB
(2am - 8am)
Options Description
Free Installation Free standard installation applies to new Lease subscribers only. Not valid with Purchase option. Limited-time offer.
SmartBrowsing All plans except 'Choice' come with SmartBrowsing, allowing you to continue using service even after Anytime data allowance is exceeded.
Choice
Advertised Price $39.99/Mo
Regular Price $49.99/Mo
Max Down Speed 5 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 1 Mbps
Anytime Data 5 GB
Bonus Data 50 GB
(2am - 8am)
Prime Plus
Advertised Price $39.99/Mo
Regular Price $59.99/Mo
Max Down Speed 10 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 1 Mbps
Anytime Data 10 GB
Bonus Data 50 GB
(2am - 8am)
Pro Plus
Advertised Price $69.99/Mo
Regular Price $79.99/Mo
Max Down Speed 10 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 2 Mbps
Anytime Data 15 GB
Bonus Data 50 GB
(2am - 8am)
Ultra
Advertised Price $79.99/Mo
Regular Price $89.99/Mo
Max Down Speed 15 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 2 Mbps
Anytime Data 50 GB
Bonus Data 50 GB
(2am - 8am)
HughesNet Options
Free Installation
SmartBrowsing

  • Pricing:$49.99–$79.99
  • Anytime Data:5–15 GB
  • Bonus Data:5-50 GB
    (2am - 8am)
  • Max Download:10 Mbps
  • Max Upload:2 Mbps
  • Equipment Fee:$10 Mo
    no purchase available
  • Contract:24 Mo

dishNET Satellite Internet Service

dishNET gets its satellite Internet service from HughesNet, so the experience you get from dishNET is very identical to that of HughesNet.

Upload and download speeds are similar to HughesNet, and data allowance is almost the same.

dishNET, however offers less than HughesNet for the same amount. It may be a good choice if you are an existing customer or looking for a good discount with TV bundle and want to waive $99 service activation fee.

dishNET Plans

Plan/Details 5 GB Internet 10 GB Internet 15 GB Internet
Advertised Price $39.99/Mo $49.99/Mo $69.99/Mo
Regular Price $49.99/Mo $59.99/Mo $79.99/Mo
Max Download Speed 5 Mbps 10 Mbps 10 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 1 Mbps 1 Mbps 2 Mbps
Anytime Data Allowance 5 GB 10 GB 15 GB
Bonus Data Allowance 5 GB
(2am - 8am)
10 GB
(2am - 8am)
50 GB
(2am - 8am)
5 GB Internet
Advertised Price $39.99/Mo
Regular Price $49.99/Mo
Max Down Speed 5 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 1 Mbps
Anytime Data 5 GB
Bonus Data 5 GB
(2am - 8am)
10 GB Internet
Advertised Price $49.99/Mo
Regular Price $59.99/Mo
Max Down Speed 10 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 1 Mbps
Anytime Data 10 GB
Bonus Data 10 GB
(2am - 8am)
15 GB Internet
Advertised Price $69.99/Mo
Regular Price $79.99/Mo
Max Down Speed 10 Mbps
Max Upload Speed 2 Mbps
Anytime Data 15 GB
Bonus Data 50 GB
(2am - 8am)

Choosing Satellite Internet Provider

Data

Data allowance is the most important examination you need to be aware of. What use will your service make if you can't use it or it runs at dialup speeds? Do the math and evaluate your monthly internet usage and choose plan wisely. Full length movie downloads (e.g. NetFlix), video steaming, torrents and other P2P sharing programs, web cams, backup services will eat up data fast. How much do you need is up to you. Anytime data currently available range from 5 Gb to 150 Gb. If you used to 'city' internet connection with DSL or cable provider, even 150 Gb per month does not sound like much (5 Gb per day). Good thing is if Bonus data is available. That is when all Anytime data is used, you're still online but at slower speeds. As a last resort, we may purchase more anytime data if really needed.

Speed

All current plans offer good speeds, starting at 5 Mbps for download and 1 Mbps for upload. Picking a faster plan may not make your experience noticeably much better but may add other important values, like data allowance. Every provider has an acceleration technology on the ground gateways to help you eliminate latency effect and make pages load faster. If you like to enjoy fast paced online games where response time is critical, satellite internet connection is definitely not best for it.

Price

The price range for satellite internet has come down very close to affordable level and comparative to DSL and cable. Many providers offer promotional prices and combined with other services offered (phone, satellite TV), you may save significantly over the contract term.

Who do you think is the best satellite internet service provider?

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