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Busting common myths around satellite technology: #2 Intermittent service means faulty technology

In our last blog we discussed whether using satellite technology for your connection needs is as slow and clunky as some of the rumours suggest. If you’re still living in the early post-millenium years then this perspective could have some truth to it but nowadays, things have vastly improved and moved on.

What else has changed and what else has general opinion possibly got wrong about satellite connection?

In the past there was a general myth with satellites, that a poor or intermittent service meant there was fault in the satellite connection,” says Shannon Fisher, Managing Director of IPSTAR.

People got told, by their internet service provider, that the satellite was to blame, and the result was that it created some distrust and a lack of real understanding.

This has created some damage around the reputation of satellite technology amongst users. In rural areas it is compounded by the fact that coverage can be hard enough to come by, let alone rely on. If there is any distrust in the level of service and how well it can be depended on, then the confidence in the technology can really drop.

Luckily, this is another myth of satellites that we can throw out the window.

Myth 2: Intermittent service means a faulty technology

Perhaps one of the quickest ways to raise your irritation levels with internet connection is when clicking a button to start the newly released Netflix movie and you find yourself twiddling your thumbs waiting for it to start playing.

That is latency, and is a delay caused by data going from your device to the service provider source and back again. In satellite terms, it’s all about waiting to communicate with the satellite orbiting earth.

Lag time can cause disruptions that have crucial impact on rural life. There are many ways its effect can be felt, such as accessing educational platforms, business productivity tools, or generally communicating in business and family life. If latency is too high, then VoIP calls and video streaming become close to impossible.

Optimal latency is the speed of light. The real problem is when satellite connection is provided through a separate internet service provider, which is where IPSTAR stand apart,” Shannon says. As an owner operator, IPSTAR’s latency will generally reduce, because the data has a less complex route to travel: just from the customer’s device to the satellite and back.

In other words, yes, satellites are far away. And yes, latency can be an issue. But choosing the right solution can remove the opportunity for fallout. IPSTAR are equipped with expertise in rural and regional connectivity that mean we can work out the best fit for our customers’ needs.

So, are you sold on satellite yet? Still got some concerns or questions? Are you worried that the sheer distance of satellites from earth, means the connection will be slower or less reliable than other connection options? In the next part of this myth-busting series we will talk about whether being in space means satellites offer a poorer connection.

If you are a small rural looking for an internet solution that bridges the gap between consumer and business connectivity, you might want to check out our latest offering Rural Connect.