Currently with HughesNet, considering the switch to viasat

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I am currently a HughesNet Customer. I have been with exede before, and have had satellite internet since 2004 so I am very familiar with the limitations etc. My issue is that HughesNet has admitted to me that they over sold their capacity, that the big business accounts are getting priority over the residential accounts, and that there is no real solution for the degraded service in the foreseeable future, so of course they are giving massive discounts to keep customers from leaving.
I have seen the available plans for my area (northern california) and my question is, are the speeds consistent throughout the normal day? Does the service slow to a crawl during 'prime time' for pacific northwest? I am really tired of having internet that I basically find useless except for browsing facebook. Even that tends to not work well during peak hours, on hughesnet right now and I feel pretty frustrated, particularly after having my gen4 service degraded to the point of being un-usable,   only to be told that upgrading to gen 5 would fix everything (oh but with a contract extension of course!) and once the upgrade was finished, back to the old slow degraded service.
I have a couple of weeks window where I can switch providers with no ETF because of the issues etc, but I really am hesitant to try viasat, since I wonder if it is just the same situation, Too many customers, not enough capacity.
Does Viasat have a 30 day trial period?
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Loren Turner

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Posted 9 months ago

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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Viasat does not have a 30 day trail period.


You say you had Exede before. If that is the case, why did you change to Hughesnet?


Viasat is going to have a lot more available capacity once their new satellite cones online in a few days. Hard to say the actual impact it will have on speeds until it has been in service awhile, but there is no reason why with next generation technology there is no reason it shouldn't be superior to anything Hughesnet can deliver in the foreseeable future.
(Edited)
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Loren Turner

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I have had both services over the years. I switched back to hughes from exede because when they switched me from the plan I had (I think I had their old 10gb plan with unlimited off peak) to the liberty pass, my service would basically become unusable when it was on 'liberty pass' and they wouldn't put me back on my old plan.
Right now, having been switched to gen5 at hughes, I am really upset because I cannot stream video at ALL and I get told there is nothing to be done about it. It is a network issue, TLS handshake loop.
I actually don't care if I have to stream say at 480p as long as it works. I do not have any HD screens so HD video is not a priority.
My main desire, is that the service just work, a little video, my guidlwars 2 gaming, etc (yes, when the service works, certain MMO games like EQII and guildwars2 etc play quite nicely)
I wish there was a trial period, so that I could compare viasat to the current craptastic service I have, before being locked into an endless contract with huge ETF.
I do appreciate the feed back. I just don't want to switch and find myself in the same boat, except paying even more then I am now. Right now, with the discounts being applied for the next 12 months, I am paying about 45$ a month for the gen5 20GB plan.
I am in the 95595 zip code if that helps.
(Edited)
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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I never have known anybody to be forced off an old legacy plan to take Liberty. No wonder you left.

I would wait a few days and see the prices of the plans coming out. If you can get Bronze or Silver unlimited for $75 or less, I would make the switch.
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James

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they tried to force me from my free zone awhile back.
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John

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I have a buddy that has Hughesnet up in Michigan.  His biggest complaint is big monies for limited download capacity.

Looking at Hughesnet vs. Viasat, I think Viasat beats them hands down with more generous and versatile plans. 

Who knows what the future brings?  The way I see it, if you sign up for Viasat now, you will be in for a two year commitment.  If Viasat does eventually get oversubscribed, by the end of two years, Viasat 3 will be coming on line, widening the pipes, so to speak.  I honestly don't know what the future plans for Hughesnet are, but my impression is that there are none.

If you're stuck with satnet, I think you could do worse than going with Viasat.

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Loren Turner

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The practice lately seems to be to make the old plans so slow and frustrating that when they tell you the best way to fix it is to upgrade, you jump at it hoping for the best. HughesNet just pulled this on me, and I am not happy about it. My gen4 worked fine until they put the gen5 bird up, then they prioritized all the gen5 over gen4 customers, and slowed us older subscribers down to a crawl. Pisses me off. I will wait to see what the new viasat plans are going to be since it sounds like things are going to change in the next week or so, but yes I agree, it seems that a relatively unlimited (as long as you are not really hitting the data hard) plan for 70 or so a month sounds reasonable. 12mps is actually quite usable, we have always streamed at standard definition when we do indulge, and mostly use it for my gaming, and his facebook and forums.
not having to worry about the bit bucket, not having to fret if he wants to watch some short UFC highlights clip on facebook etc would be nice.
Thank you for the input. =)
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Terry

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Same happened to me Loren. I had Gen4 and all of sudden had super slow connection. When I called they tried to say they had to send a tech out to adjust my dish. I was no, nothing wrong with the dish. I then just decided to go with my phone temporarily until ViaSat-2 came on board. When I called to cancel Hughes, I got the big speech basically letting me know I didn't know what I was doing. I called in advance to make SURE there were NO overcharges. So for the last 3 weeks of my service, it was the best it ever was. I called them back and was pissed at their little data games and such. Anyways, I'm done with hughes. I'll try my luck with ViaSat. Now just researching on the best plan for me and if the new Sat is worth hooking up to vs the old.
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Loren Turner

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It does seem to be the new business model these days. The company brings out new supposedly great stuff, but most people are happy with what they have, that doesn't help the company pay for all the new infrastructure though so they just flip a few switches behind the scenes and suddenly you are throttled back and pulling your hair out.
Then the techs all say "you need new equipment, it will be much better if you upgrade".
Well their upgrade has me locked out of being able to stream video, the only site I can get to work is my amazon video. No netflix, no cbs...
They are sending a new modem to make sure that isn't the problem, but still, even with 50% discount for the next 12 months, it is frustrating. Where are these incredible speeds I am supposed to be getting? The new video features? How can I enjoy those if I can't stream at all?
I just don't want to get into the same problem with a new service. If Viasat had a trial period, I could get it installed, while the hughes account is still active, test it out and if we like it better, stay with that, and cancel hughes, no interruption of service. I am just wary of making the switch and then being in a 2 year contract, and the same boat as I am now.
The trial period would go a long way to helping with new customer anxieties.
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I am not sure of Hughesnet's plans either. One wonders how long term they are committed to the industry. I don't think they have the commercial air presence that Viasat does, and that is a big part of Viasat's projected growth.
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John

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I read somewhere that Hughesnet threw in with ONEWeb, but I don't know where that initiative realistically stands at the moment.

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John

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That will be something to keep an eye on indeed.
Viasat is 100% better then any other sat internet! We used to have Hughes. It sucked big time! Viasat has more advanced technologies and a special internet application for Web surfing at a higher speed without a higher bill. Viasat is also serving government internet services also. So they have to keep their service up and advancing faster. Viasat is a American Company. I wouldn't have anything but it. If Cable & DSL isn't available.
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The original poster may have been forced to a Liberty plan because of a late payment or putting their account on hibernation.  Exede/Viasat only lets you resume service with whatever the current plan offerings are.

If you have the opportunity to ditch Hughesnet for Viasat and not pay an ETF, I would say do it.  There are a few things to keep in mind when switching though.

First, the unlimited plans do still have data caps.  You get "up to" whatever speed your plan allows until you reach 150 GB.  After 150 GB, your speeds will slow down.  Internet should still be usable, but your speeds will slow down.

You mentioned that 12 mbps will be fine for you to do your streaming.  Here is another thing to consider.  Just because your plan allows up to 12 mbps, it does not mean your video will stream at the same rate.  Only regular file downloads and web browsing is at 12 mbps.  Your actual video will stream using data ranging from 1 mbps to 3 mbps depending on the video quality level your plan allows.

Overall, you will be much happier with Viasat.  Just make sure you understand the plan you are subscribing to.  I am very happy with my Liberty 12 plan and I don't have to deal with slower bit rates for video streaming.
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Loren Turner

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I don't do a LOT of streaming, prefering to use playon to dvr my shows during off peak hours to be watched the next day. Right now, HN is sending me ANOTHER modem, so we can rule out the modem as the cause of the issue of not being able to get any streaming websites to work at all.
For now, I guess since they are pretty much comping my internet for the next 12 months, I will wait and see.
Contract is up then, and if it still doesn't work as advertised, I will switch. I just don't want to get caught in the endless loop of changing providers only to find out they both suck in different ways.
I do think it is a bit ludicrous that the plans on each site are touted to offer HIGH SPEED! etc and the reality is, because of the size of the customer base, your speeds will average 5 to 6 down and 1 up regardless of plan... I only WISH I could get even half what I am supposed to get on this gen 5 20gb 25 down and 3 up plan...
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Loren Turner

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Well I have weighed all the options, and after doing some local testing, and talking to one of my local installers that I trust, I have decided to just not get satellite at all. It seemed to me, I would have the option of spending a LOT of money up front, and being able to get one of the older plans, on a no-contract basis through a local re-seller, or spend a little money up front, and be under contract for 2 more years, and be faced with the same issues I am having now on hughesNet. So I took a third route. I have a couple of fluffy beanies hanging from my curtain rod, in each one is one of our smart phones. Each phone has it's wifi hotspot set up, and activated and we each tether our computers to our phone for our internet. Each phone has an unlimited data plan, which we are still careful with because of course, if you use more then 22GB you are slowed down to 2 or 3G
So if I want to get multiple videos via playon, I will just have to go visit my son and glomp his internet for a couple days... lol He doesn't care, he has unlimited land based Suddenlink.
This solution is going to prove very cost effective. Both phones on the USCellular total plan, together, cost us 126$ a month, with the discounts for ebilling and autopay in place.
My bill before changing plans was 92$ and I paid HughesNet anywhere from 65 to 90$ a month for internet that didn't work half the time.
I think even with the 30$ increase in my cell phone bill, I am still saving money...
The actual tethered internet is slower as in the speed test says it is only 2.2 MBPS down and 586KPS up, however it is MUCH faster feeling and more responsive then satellite. There is virtually NO latency. everything loads up very quickly and my games play flawlessly.
I wonder how many other people will start exploring the possibilities of what their cell service can do for them internet wise.
The only thing that could make this better, is if I get one of wilson's cell signal booster kits. That is on the list for this next winter.
For now, everything works well and we can take our internet with us where ever we go, and since we plan to travel this summer... well I just don't see a downside.
Thank you all for your input.
OH by the way, as soon as I cancelled my hughes, and stuck the Gen4 modem back on, miraculously my internet seems to be performing almost like it used to, except it does go up and down a lot. I think they are hoping I will feel like "oh hey they fixed it, maybe I will just keep it" ... ain't happening lol I like my tethered internet much better.
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Jim16

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Enjoy your cell phone internet.  That is not a home internet solution but if it works for you then it's fine.  22gigs a month won't work for streaming on a 48" TV.  People come on here and tell us to go use a tethered phone as our home internet. That's not going to work.
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Loren Turner

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I didn't say I use it for streaming on a 48" TV either, nor did I ever tell anyone else to use a cell phone tether for their internet. I merely stated that it is a viable solution for US, and that is the direction we are going. It will be sufficient for facebook, small videos he likes to view on facebook or youtube, and for me, I don't stream video, I just like to play my online MMO games like Guildwars2. It works for US, it probably wouldn't work for everyone as most people do the wall sized tvs and stream netflix constantly etc. All I was saying in my previous post was that I found a viable solution for MYSELF and it allowed me to back away from spending quite a LOT of money and/or getting trapped into another hideous 2 or 3 year contract.
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SpiderGazer Gazer

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I use a tablet and tether. It does prioritize you after 22 gigs, and I like the fact its mobile so ot can do my gps. I use it fir calls as well. I used 140 gigs streaming movies the first month. I works well early morning. I have it on contantly streaming live streams in low rez. I just wish tethering didnt slow down and stay that way. With two tablets I can watch Streams on one and fb and slow games on tge tethered tab. Im glad I didnt go the dish route.
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computer1949

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I I'm thinking about switch to Verizon home internet & phone I think it will be Unlimited
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Loren Turner

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I have capped on USCellular, at 22g, it really is pretty slow. You can do facebook if you are patient but forget watching videos on anything but your phone. I am just careful how I use it, just like I was with my satellite internet. The difference is, my hubby has his own 22g, and I have mine (we each use our own wifi hotspot) so we can each determine how we want to use our internet without impacting the other. We have managed to make our 22g last a full month, only having to put up with being prioritized maybe for a day. I still like it better then satellite, I already pay for the data whether I use it or not, so this way I am only paying one bill, to my phone provider. It costs us 125$ a month for 2 lines, unlimited total package. Before, I was paying 110$ a month for 2 lines, with 6GB shared data, and 85$ a month average to hughesnet for satellite internet that didn't work for the last 6 months I had it, because they were doing their best to force me to upgrade and pay MORE money. I finally saw the last of them, when they tried to charge me for equipment I had returned.
I am really OVER the rip off that is satellite internet. Smart phone wifi tethering isn't a perfect solution but it does cover 95% of our internet needs, and I go visit my son when I have to do anything big, like update my Garmin GPS that I use on the motorcycle.I would encourage you to make the switch, but treat it like you have to treat your satellite internet, keep watch on your usage and don't binge on videos overmuch.
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Ian Montgomery

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Thanks Loren. I do binge watch, admittedly. The Hughes sales guy (upgrading to Gen5) lied to me and said throttled would definitely be 3Mbps. Their marketing language says 1-3 Mbps throttled but it never exceeds 1.5. So after complaining on their forums, Hughes gave me a permanent $30 discount. I can stream throttled though, even during peak hours. Initial buffering takes a while but the picture quality eventually gets good enough. So for $40/mo I can basically stream all I want but have crappy browsing all the time. This is where I think I could just up my $45 phone bill to $65 and get 22GB to tether and do all my normal internet and work stuff. If my printer will work with tethering...

But my data signal isn't quite good enough to be quick. So I called WeBoost just now to see if I could maybe buy an upgraded antenna or something. Their customer service is amazing and they are sending me (for free) a new stronger antenna to replace my outdoor antenna, and the old outdoor antenna will replace the indoor antenna. They believe it will help significantly. What a great company to just offer that without me even complaining!

That's cool you live in an RV and ride a motorcycle. I'm also a rider and live on a beautiful forest farm in the wilds of Madison County, NC.
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Ian Montgomery

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Thanks Loren. I do binge watch, admittedly. The Hughes sales guy (upgrading to Gen5) lied to me and said throttled would definitely be 3Mbps. Their marketing language says 1-3 Mbps throttled but it never exceeds 1.5. So after complaining on their forums, Hughes gave me a permanent $30 discount. I can stream throttled though, even during peak hours. Initial buffering takes a while but the picture quality eventually gets good enough. So for $40/mo I can basically stream all I want but have crappy browsing all the time. This is where I think I could just up my $45 phone bill to $65 and get 22GB to tether and do all my normal internet and work stuff. If my printer will work with tethering...

But my data signal isn't quite good enough to be quick. So I called WeBoost just now to see if I could maybe buy an upgraded antenna or something. Their customer service is amazing and they are sending me (for free) a new stronger antenna to replace my outdoor antenna, and the old outdoor antenna will replace the indoor antenna. They believe it will help significantly. What a great company to just offer that without me even complaining!

That's cool you live in an RV and ride a motorcycle. I'm also a rider and live on a beautiful forest farm in the wilds of Madison County, NC.
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Loren Turner

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Yeah the key to all this is just knowing what your expectations are, vs the reality.glad weboost came through for you, it doesn't happen often enough these days.
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Cloverdavid

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I have been with Exede (Viasat) for over 2 years. Great satellite coverage. Have never had any problems. Never had to call for help. Wish that faster d/l speed wasn't so expensive. Some years ago I had Hughes satellite. A total mess. Company was often dishonest about reasons service was interrupted, which happened too often. Finally was able to get phone connection. Then Exede came along and I have been a happy camper ever since.
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Doug Morris

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I've been an Exede customer for nearly 5 years.  In the past month, I RARELY see download speeds in excess of 1Mbps.  I recommend you try a cellular option for Internet.  I'm going to try AT&T.  My neighbor has it and his connection seldom drops below 7Mbps.  Crushes my Exede speeds.
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cdoublejj

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I'm looking at viasat/Exede but, the unlimited plans aren't unlimited, they throttle you down after 20gb. everybody and even some businesses are telling me they do not recommend Exede and i can see why.
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Deb Fo

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I just switched from the old DishNet 10GB plan because the speeds were inconsistent with a large Jitter. My 'Anytime' speeds ranged from 0.7 to 16 Mbps in the span of minutes when still under my limit. When I reached my limit, it was 0.8-0.5 Mbps! I did not want to pay $99 to upgrade and pay more per month with no guarantee that it would be much better... hence my switch as there are no other choices where I live with mountains and trees!

So far (it's only been a day), Viasat speeds with the 12 Mbps unlimited plan during the day have been 17-18 Mbps with less Jitter! I hope that this continues and I didn't make a mistake.
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Deb Fo

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DishNet Jitter was running from 169 (one-time low) to 840 ms, average about 400-500 ms.  So far Viasat has been running from a low 42 ms to a one-time high of 286... avg around 100 ms.
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Deb Fo

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Old Labs... you are correct!  Hopefully, Viasat will not oversubscribe anytime soon!
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Old Labs (VS1-329-L12FZ)

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Don't worry that too shall pass ;)

DishNet? Was that through Viasat/Exede or HughesNet, I know they wholesaled for both at one time.
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Deb Fo

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HughesNet.
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Sold for both at one time. You could end up with Hughesnet or Exede.
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Tom Denham

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We have both Hughes and Viasat, two customers in my house.  My daughter uses Viasat.  Viasat has a better price plan for the data and availability is much higher with Viasat.  I plan to switch from Hughes as soon as my contract is up.  Viasat is a little more reliable when the weather is bad too.  Not sure what the difference is with the weather, but over all comparing the two side by side, I would say Viasat is a clear winner!!! 
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Loren Turner

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It's been 6 months since I started this thread, and we switched to tethering to our phone's wifi hotspot for our internet. It has worked remarkably well. We don't binge watch netflix or anything, but can watch vidoes that pop up on facebook etc. We usually manage to stay under the 22GB limit (before throttling) and at present are saving about 80$ a month.
I know this solution isn't for everybody, because most people like to use their internet extensively.
However, it works well for my gaming. Toby can do his facebook stuff and we don't have the latency issues we had with satellite.
We each use our own phone's tether, and each phone is on 'unlimited' so we each have our own 22GB allotment before they throttle the speed. So basically, we get 44GB between us, instead of 10GB we had to share, and what one person is doing on their computer doesn't impact the other person. The way I see it, it is twice the internet at a quarter of the price, since my bill only went up 15$ when I switched both lines to the total plans.
So our next purchase will be a weboost signal booster so we can get good enough signal inside that we don't have to keep the phones sitting in the window lol, and hopefully winter weather won't impact it as hard as it does satellite around here.
I think as the cell companies get that 5G rolled out, satellite companies might have to re-think their business model, because more and more people are going to start using their phone data plans when possible. It just makes more sense where it will work, to only pay one bill and get the same or better service, which is portable.


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Old Labs (VS1-329-L12FZ)

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Let us know how the weBoost goes... what kind of cell signal are you getting by the windows?

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