Just need the truth

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  • Updated 4 months ago
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Want to cut through all the clutter, ad hype, free this, unlimited that, unrealistic speed claims, never ending data problems. Ok, how many Viasat customers are going to tell me the truth. I live very rural about sixty miles south of Lake Tahoe in the mountains. I moved from Sacramento eight years ago where I had Comcast as my ISP. I never new just how good I had it until I moved up here. Started off with AT&T, in my opinion a thoroughly unethical company in every aspect. Sold us four IPhones that they knew we would not be able to get a signal for at our current address, Sold us signal booster that only worked in conjunction with their internet service. Booster actually did work but internet was a joke. If it rained service was out for up to two weeks, Rats were always chewing wires on their poles service out again. Next service even more of a headache “ VERIZON “ now there’s a bunch of liars and con men. Sold us a internet service that was actually fast via this crazy kind of can attached to the side of the house. Problem on day one they omitted to tell us that the can itself used 160Gb of data 10Gb over what we paid for for the month. I guess you can imagine the shock at the end of the month. Ok, now back to AT&T they had supposedly solved all their troubles, guess again. Finally finishing up with AT&T not renewing any internet services when some customers dropped them. This service finally resolved itself when AT& T. discontinued service to all in my area without notice and sent refund Cheques, now thats really unethical, considering they knew that there was a 24 hour heart monitor in the home that relied on the connection fortunately I didn’t die. Now with Hughes- Net. This service has been worse than AT&T, the slowest I’ve ever had even though they claimed fast upload and download speed rarely materialized. I still have not received an explaination why most of our data is used up on the first two days only leaving me with 25% of my monthly allowance left for the rest of the month. Now considering Viasat!!! Just need know first hand from Viasat customers what it’s really like. Give me it all!!! the good, the bad, and the fifty shades of grey in between.
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L. T. Scott

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  • happy

Posted 4 months ago

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Leo George Jr

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Just as bad and unethical as the rest. Run away, run fast.
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C F

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Right. I'm paying for the 25mbps speed and haven't seen anything over 9mbps and that happen once about 3 months ago.
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C F

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Just did another speed test. 3.2Mbps
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C F

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This was the next one
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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What can't you do with a 3.2 mbps connection?
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C F

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Can't stream that's for damn sure.  Unless you like watching a spinning wheel for 10 minutes, watch 5 secs of video at 480p then back to spinning wheel for another 10 minutes.
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Jim16

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Every provider you have used is crap, according to you.  You will never be satisfied with anyone. Why bother?  ( it took awhile but the weekend is here)
(Edited)
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L. T. Scott

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I’m not a lady, But Im certainly not a female. However if you would like me to try an write in a more masculine manner I would be only to happy to oblige.
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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No worries. My apologies for that simple mistake.
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L. T. Scott

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Ok, veteran sat user. That is not the case, satellite service is my only option, there is no other providers in my area. The problem here the advertising claims. Basically there is a law called Truth in advertising. So what do companies do to mitigate that, and it’s just not satellite providers it’s hugely prevalent with mostly all corporations. What they do is make the claim in large print then add “ up to “ in small print. You may see it as the norm because it’s been going on for years, but I see it as shady and completely unethical way to hook up new customers. However, I do appreciate your comment.
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zanne

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They always have some fluff to make themselves seem better. Hughesnet's ads are blatant lies. I had Hughesnet for many years & it got progressively worse. I've found that Viasat/Exede is better. There are some edges HN had over it-- like more advanced modem features (which was how I found out they were ghost-throttling me below the speeds I was paying for-- I never got even half the speeds). I despised HN & could go on about that.
Unfortunately, with satellite, they have you over a barrel so they can charge you very high $ for lower amounts of data than you could get on dsl or cable. They get away with it bc they know your options are limited. I've had problems with AT&T as well-- they are quite dishonest & have a reputation for it.
Viasat will advertise "unlimited" plans, but they are actually limited. I tried to view what the current plans are but the website directed me to call their sales people to find out more. So, I don't have as much info on the newer plans. I was on a legacy plan that is no longer available for several years and almost 2 years ago I switched to the "Freedom" plan. It's expensive and we still have to be careful-- no have to watch our software updates and sometimes put things off for another month or download via laptop at someone else's house.
You will probably still be somewhat frustrated, but it's better than nothing & better than Hughesnet.
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GabeU, Champion

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Hughesnet's ads are blatant lies.
For you.  It's exceeded what's said in the commercials for me, though I guess it's technically still a lie when they say "You'll get 25 Mbps" and I get nearly double that.

And, BTW, the effects of congestion is not throttling.  HughesNet was NOT throttling you, in "ghost" fashion or any other, save for if/when you ran out of data.  That is the ONLY time you are actively throttled.  Congestion due to load affects speed greatly, just like it does with ViaSat.   

And, like with ViaSat, you paid for a service with an "up to" speed.  

ViaSat's unlimited plans ARE unlimited, but that doesn't mean that during heavy congestion you aren't prioritized behind others once you have reached a specific data threshold.  People with Unlimited Plans have gone through hundreds of GBs of data in a month, as has been noted on here many times.  
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michael3245

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I had DSL service before I got viasat. Yes each service has it restrictions and ups and downs. 

My story is the DSL service would go out everyime  a thunderstorm happens here. Or the DSL boxes would get hit with bush hogs when people was cutting trees making the service worse. The lines belong to the old old sprint days when they had land lines. I switched to Viasat. i use to be a heavy gamer not anymore do to work and other things. I still play games. I do have direct tv now youtube prem and Netflix. It works great. Now when your over your data limit it is a hit or miss.  I have had success. But when the summer is in and everyone is out it is a little slow thats to be expected. My old dsl was the same. 

So story short. I love VIASAT. 
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L. T. Scott

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Thank you I appreciate your time and input.
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david lightsey

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I was with AT&T for years and had extremely poor service. I was going to try Hughes but found out the salesperson lied about everything and canceled  the install. Overall I am satisfied with ViaSat. My speeds range from fair to good. I watch about 2 hrs of streaming video each day and have not went over my data cap(turn off modem when not in use.) > I think it has a lot to do with location? Lots of folks are having bad speed issues but I don't know how many folks with good service make positive comments. I would say it comes down to what choices you have.
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michael3245

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I am still  a heavy gamer but not a MMO online one as much anymore :D 
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Tim Spake

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See if anyone else in area has it. My service with Viasat and before with Exede has been terrible. Rarely get good speeds during normal hours. I heard all the promises and claims, it never lived up to their claims. I pay for 25Mbps and 150 Gig, rarely get 2Mbps and average 30 Gig use since cant yse interent as most people do.. They made claims new sat would free up congestion but it seems for many it has gotten worse. After countless emails, calls, service techs to house it's still congestion. That being said, some do get acceptable service/speeds if the beam in area can handle it. It's our cross to bare since we live in rural area. Until another provider comes along, we don't have much choice. If you sign up, do not let apps auto-update, forget about movies and tv at hi-def.
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L. T. Scott

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Yeah what’s you say makes a lot of sense and basically sums it all up. You know, if these service providers were just honest we would adjust but it the claims that rub me the wrong way. I’m in the process of filling a complaint with the FTC about all of them especially AT&T, and Verizon they are just the worst. I heard last week that these corporatations make the decision because the fine is less than the profit they make so it’s worth it for them.
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L. T. Scott

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My son is a super gamer on line, and beta tester for game makers.
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michael3245

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I play games on steam,blizzard,orgin and others. Now depends on the games some games don't work well but downloading games works great. I have played games like wildlands, overwatch and a few others. It all depends. I will be honest the division no longer works. But what can you say. I done the research and had a idea what I was getting into. Now to try to play like call of duty can forget it won't work very well. It is because of the high ping times. 
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L. T. Scott

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Incidentally, my son moved back to the city because of the bad service up here.
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DebG, Champion

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I've been happy with Viasat.  I started out with the cheapest 10gb plan, and then I switched to the 150gb plan with Wifi almost a year and a half ago.  I'm not a gamer, but I do watch quite a bit of Netflix.  Most months, I use well under half of my data allowance.  I can't really answer questions about speed, but compared to other ISPs I've used, it seems fine to me.

Mostly, it works very well.  If there's a strong wind/sand storm or heavy cloud cover, I often lose my internet connection for part of a day.  I had the same problem with my last satellite service.  I think it's just an unfortunate feature of satellite internet.

I live in a remote desert area an hour or so from the Palm Springs area.  Satellite internet is the only option way out here.  The installation process was quick, efficient, and courteous.
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Marika

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Alright so first off, unless you are capable of getting the mythical Platinum 100 plan, you won't be getting a 150GB data plan. All of the previous 150GB plans have been done away with and the only ones with them are those grandfathered in. I recommend going to the viasat website, typing in your zip code and your address if it requests it as sometimes they need to know specifically where you are. If you don't stream or at least don't mind never streaming HD, don't game online at all, never auto-update apps or windows or anything of the sort then you shouldn't have issues. 

It is also worth checking to see if the beam that would service is heavily congested or not, some beams are so heavily congested that even when you have priority data you will still experience very poor speeds. The liberty plans allow for a late night free zone or LNFZ for short, these typically start at 3 AM to 6 AM.  So, if you can schedule downloads or happen to be awake in that timeframe, then would be the best time to get all of your device updates out of the way as the data used during that perod does not count towards your usage. All of the "unlimited" plans do not come with this, so keep that in mind. 

The current "Unlimited" plans carry fairly small amounts of priority data in contrast of their cost, now plans, pricing, etc all depend on what beam you are on, this is just a screenshot of what plans and prices are available at my zip code. This is just to give you an idea of what you may be greeted with. 







Now with that out of the way, as for my personal experience it has been up and down, when I have data it works decent, I have the old Unlimited Silver 25mbps 150GB plan which restricts streaming to 480p and it really depends on the website that you're streaming on whether or not it will actually work as Viasat restricts the bitrate to 1-1.5mbps meaning if a website considers 480p to be say 2mbps you will encounter frequent buffering. I am on Viasat-1, Viasat-2 is the newest satellite and is supposedly not all that congested, but it seems it's rather hit or miss with service on Viasat-2 as the good plans such as the aforementioned Platinum 100 plan are a bit of a unicorn right now.  Also it seems getting a good install is pretty hit or miss because Viasat-2 has different requirements or something, I'm sure Andy can chime in with specifics or correct me if needed.  

I think that's about everything I can tell you. 
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L. T. Scott

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Thank for the advice, I appreciate you taking the time to reply.
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J&J

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 There are NO beams from ViaSat-1 servicing 60 miles south of Lake Tahoe.   If you enter your zip code at ViaSat.com to check availability in your area, all plans will be served by ViaSat-2.  This is a good thing.  If you see plans like shown below, go for the 100Mbps plan because it comes with 150GB of priority data.  Note: ViaSat-2 will be just 2-3 clock minutes above the south-eastern horizon.  This will require a dish placement that can actually see the satellite to work.

My service with ViaSat can only be described as Perfect, it slows down maybe 3 times a year but still gives over 10Mbps when it slows on a 12Mbps plan.  I am located in an area served by ViaSat-1 beam 369 which is the greater Silicon Valley area of California.  I live in the mountains east of Milpitas. There are others I have noticed commenting at this forum in this area that are not experiencing such reliable speeds.  I think the plan a person is on makes a huge difference.  I have the Freedom 150 and I do recommend the 100Mbps plan if you are able to get it at your location.  It's like they know we eat more, so they feed us more.

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L. T. Scott

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Sorry for the mistake I’m actually east of Tahoe on US 50, I checked with my zip and it says there is coverage. Thank you for the correction.
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privatejordy

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I have exede/viasat because other than a hotspot device with a weak signal, it's my only option.

I'm luckier than most because my speeds are usually pretty good, and even when I use up my data and go into restricted mode, it's very usable. I'm in data restriction now and I streamed several episodes of Handmaid's Tale on Hulu last night, but others like Netflix for example, don't stream as well, however I do have the data saving feature turned on, and that restricts you to 480p.

You have to learn to conserve data. I have everything set up to never update automatically and I always try to do updates during the free zone time. I'm on Viasat 1 and on the 12Gig 25mbps plan which still works when you've used up your data, and offers a short free zone.
I used up my 12 gigs at about 2 1/2 weeks into this billing cycle because I watched a lot of youtube videos and I fell asleep and Hulu just kept on streaming one episode after another for hours.

I think I'm in a good geographical location and there's less congestion because many internet providers have most of the state covered, so I'm an exception.

You will be locked into a 24 month contract so you might want to go with a cheap plan and then upgrade accordingly, and know that plans change and you can't always go back to what you had before when making any changes. I was on a plan with a 2 am till 8 am freezone but when I changed that changed to 3 am to 6 am, barely enough time to stream a long movie in HD for data conservation.

I'm retired, disabled and nocturnal, so that helps!  Most people aren't going to set the alarm for 3 am so they can update apps and computers, or watch movies.. and conserve data.

If anything else was available here, I probably wouldn't be a satellite internet consumer, but I'm glad it's an option otherwise I'd have to pay through the nose for 8 gigs a month with a 2 bar 3g signal.

It's 12:25 AM and I'm streaming The Wire from Amazon Prime on a Sharp Roku tv on wifi and the modem/router is 4 rooms away, and I'm in restriction.
(Edited)
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johnny c

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I have the Silver 150, 25 Mbps plan, been with them awhile so no contract.  I have a premium Directv package, been with them for 18 years.  So i don't care much about streaming, I had to get a new tv Samsung 65 inch.  I watched 3 jazz concerts tonight, no buffering, HD, i don't know if it was 1080, but it looked great, also i have amazon prime for a one month trial so my wife suggested we try a movie she wanted to see, again looked HD, no buffering etc. And i watched all of this from 7 PM til 1 AM.  Usually never get close to 25 Mbps, Fast.com 1. 

They are just numbers my results were excellent, maybe the new Smart TV, which i did set to optimize video, does the job, i was impressed tonight.  And I am on, from all postings i see a pretty heavily used beam.  At this time I have only used about 45 G of my 150 G.
Having said all the above i'm not leaving DTV to attempt streaming 24/7.
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GabeU, Champion

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It doesn't sound to me like satellite internet is going to work for you.  
I still have not received an explaination why most of our data is used up on the first two days only leaving me with 25% of my monthly allowance left for the rest of the month.
That's because it's up to you to figure out what is using your data, and until you figure out which device(s) is using the data the issue is simply going to follow you from HughesNet to ViaSat.  You can ask for help in figuring it out from other users on their community.  
(Edited)
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Ron Frank

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LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION!  Some of us love our service if a good beam covers our area and not many others are fighting for bandwidth.  Some of us are in high usage areas with poor coverage.  Do a little research, see if VS2 covers you and try to get some LOCAL feedback.
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privatejordy

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I think (Location) and your install, is the key to being a happy customer.
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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110% agree. One or both those issues can cause havoc!
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Ron Frank

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Been with Viasat (Exede) 5+ years.  It was good once, I was so happy I switched my phone service to Exede voice.  When this congestion issue started I had techs here regularly and one INSISTED it was my install.  He redid everything with NO CHANGE.  It is congestion here plain and simple, which I understand, but what burns me is 2+ years of promises it would be "fixed" shortly.
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Mike Hopson

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We have had Wild Blue and have continued on to what is now known as Viasat. Here in southern middle Tennessee if you live in the country then satellite internet is one of the best options. Speeds vary from high early in the morning to low at night. We have never gotten into trying to stream video due to the limited bandwidth during prime viewing hours. Dish Network and a TV antenna provide our television other than DVD's rented from Netflix. Yes satellite TV costs an additional charge but in the long run I have been pleased with Viasat because that is all that we have. We moved from dial up to satellite and have never looked back. 
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bill nord

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Throw in my two cents.  I, like you, have tried most of the ISP and found them to be as you described.  Via Stat isn't any different.  I've learned to live with it.  MOST of the time they provide fairly good service.  My beam is overloaded, as are most.  I think that the most important issue for good service in to make sure you get an good install of the equipment.  Poor install == poor service, either now or later.  How do you do this??? Not sure for you, but for me--I essentially installed it myself with the "installer" watching.  Good Luck.
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Bob Hansen

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Yep, a bad install frustrated me for months, but after 9 days of no service, another installer came out and revamped the system. From then on, service was acceptable and fairly reliable. My problem w/ Viasat? Cost. $116.00 a month for 150 gigs and 12 mbs speed. Ridiculous. We are basically hostages due to the location predicaments. 
My situation was that due to being 800 feet from the road, the cable provider wanted close to $4000.00 for run a line to my house. I couldn't afford it at the time, so I went with Exede. After 3 years of this, I researched ways to get around the high cost of infrastructure and install a fiber optic line from my out building to my house. Had the cable company install high speed internet to my out building office and sent that signal to the house. Cost me @ $750.00. Now I have 90 mbs and 400 gigs per month for $39.15. Saving me $76.00 per month. 
Cancelling was pain, long hold times, passed from agent to agent, offered a free month of service to stay. That's the best they would do. 
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Brad, Viasat Employee

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Just to give an employee answer. I think the most important thing for any potential customer to do is to look up the service a bit. Satellite will have some limitations that DSL and Cable do not have but we put together this page that I think is worth a review: https://www.exede.com/what-to-expect/

Of course like any provider we do have customers that have issues with the service but a fair share of online complaints tend to be over being unaware of any limitations of satellite. 
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L. T. Scott

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Cost of the service not important to me. If it has to cost me $500 I’m total up with that as long as I get what they say I’m gonna get.
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L. T. Scott

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Brad, I understand all that we do have a lot of devices. That’s was the first thing I did, turn off every device then I checked.
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Ronald Stricklin

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You will pretty much get hughesnet at a higher price. 
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privatejordy

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I felt fortunate when I got a 10,500 real money trade-in allowance on a 2012 Grand Caravan with 27,000 miles and a clean one owner carfax report. I inherited that 32k spotless cream puff that already has bad brakes and struts. Cheap junk OE parts. I had to replace the rotors, pads and struts, and have a recall issue dealt with so I could get that much! Dodge and Minivan are two giant hits. I'd take a Barracuda convertible, and a few other muscle cars from the late 60s, but that's about it. Maybe a vintage Powerwagon.
(Edited)
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Ron Frank

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OK I dont believe Mitsubishi ever "owned" Chrysler, but they did partner with them following the bankruptcy to help bail them out and were pivotal in the front wheel drive movement.

I am a Dodge man from years ago ... Chargers, Cudas, Roadrunners etc even the old Power Wagons.  I currently own 2 1980 Dodge/Plymouth cars (projects), 4 full size trucks 77 to 93, and 3, 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokees, yet my daily right now ... my 94 Chevy conversion van.  Makes me sick these newer Chrysler products are JUNK!  And 99.9% of the issues is poor quality, cheaply made OE parts.  Even my beloved 91 Cummins 1 ton 4x4, the Cummins is an animal, the problem is what little remains of the "truck" its in.
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Ronald Stricklin

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Diamond tar motors was a joint venture between mitsubishi and Chrysler. The Mitsubishi eclipse, the eagle talon, the plymouth (later dodge) laser. Mostly rebadged Mitsubishu's built in the US.
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Ronald Stricklin

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Diamond tar motors was a joint venture between mitsubishi and Chrysler. The Mitsubishi eclipse, the eagle talon, the plymouth (later dodge) laser. Mostly rebadged Mitsubishu's built in the US.
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privatejordy

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The Dodge Stealth was a Mitsubishi 3000GT
(Edited)
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Bev, Champion

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I have Unlimited Silver and, overall I'm happy with my service and speeds. Now if I go over 150 GB in a month, streaming is pretty much out until reset but, it's rare (once or twice a year) that we go over 150 GB in a month. HD also doesn't matter to us so the 480 resolution restriction is fine for us. If we want HD, we'll watch it on DirectTV as it airs or, go to a movie theater if it's a film we really want to see (again 1-2 movies at the theater per year.)

Of course I get rain fade during moderately heavy to heavy storms, especially thunder storms, I expect that and, it's never out more than an hour, usually just a few minutes.

I have to keep a couple of trees trimmed to prevent them blocking my dish but, that's part of living in a forested area and, having trees on my property.

While I do see the 25 Mbps quite regularly on speed tests, I rarely get that for actual downloads but, that's the servers I download from and, their dislike of the high latency. If you are into gaming, then fast twitch games (First Person Shooter type) will not work, latency is around 600 ms (that's ping in gaming) and, that's a lot of lag for gaming. You can't get better than that no matter what you do so, you either don't game, or choose games that are turn based combat and, learn to allow for the lag.

None of the plans are suitable for cord cutting, you will want an alternate TV service regardless of Viasat plan.

Some of the first line phone reps are less that great and, a few, now and then are real pieces of work either rude or just make things up to get you off the phone. Those reps don't last long and, most do run the script, try a few things, then escalate the issue if they can't fix it with basic steps. Emailing viasatlistens@viasat.com, in my experience, is a better way to get help and, get connected with the people that can actually help faster. Yes that's up to a 24 hour wait weekdays and, waiting until Monday or Tuesday if it's the weekend but, for me, that still gets a better result than calling. I do call to see if there is an outage affecting my beam or gateway but, that's all it's good for in my opinion.
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GabeU, Champion

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Some of the first line phone reps are less that great 
I wish my service's phone reps were ranked as high as "less than great".  It would be an improvement.  LOL. 
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Viasat use to be known for American based tech support as opposed to India or somewhere else (like Hughesnet). Unfortunately, that is not always the case.
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GabeU, Champion

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HughesNet used to have their phone support based in the US, too.  I can't remember when that changed, though.  I remember when I had a speed issue after upgrading to a new modem back in 2007 and all of the people that I spoke to were in the US, and it was a lot of them.  DirecTV used to have American based phone support, as well.  

I guess saving some money is more important than customer satisfaction.  
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Bev, Champion

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I was trying to be nice - I've had those first line reps flat out lie to me, though that was a few years ago. One even told me that the satellite was broken and, someone was on their way to fix it. LOL  I'm guessing that rep had no clue what a satellite actually is or how the system works and, was just making up whatever to appease me.

Needless to say, that rep failed miserably and, I kept calling back until I got a better rep that took the time to confirm that there was maintenance going on at my gateway and, it would be 2-5 hours before my service would be restored.

The other one I got quite often, before I gave up calling, was "it's weather at your gateway." when I have DirecTV and can check the weather at my gateway myself and, know there is not a weather problem there. I called a couple of reps on that, got hung up on for actually knowing what the weather was like at my gateway (and probably for actually knowing which gateway I am on.)

Now I do call if it isn't acting like weather and, the weather report is clear at both ends to see if it's maintenance or work at my gateway and, I specifically ask what I want to know, then ask to be transferred if the first rep can't answer my question. Maybe they will get the hint to inform reps of those things so that they can tell customers what's going on.

I'd much prefer answers like "Yes, there is a problem at the Wyoming gateway. Our technicians are working on it and, they estimate it will be 4 to 5 hours before it's fixed." or "I don't know, let me transfer you to someone that can answer your question." Even "I don't know and, no one is in the office now that would know. Can you email support or, call back in the morning, please?" would be better than the reboot run around then, a lame excuse that I know is just that, an excuse to get me off the phone.
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Ron Frank

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LOL Bev, as I have said we got so sick of the first line run around we simply wait to call during regular business hours and demand to be transferred to advanced tech support.

Never fails after explaining to the first liners that we have Exede voice and resetting our modem will terminate the call, they hit remote reset on their computer and we have to call back and start the whole process over with a new rep.

That and 99% of the time the "solution" is they can find nothing wrong so the problem must be on our end and they will schedule someone to come out.
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zanne

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I will preface this with some info: The only internet I've ever had has been very slow dialup (which stopped working where I live many many years ago due to crappy phone lines-- I only got 2kbps) and satellite. I started out with Direcway which sold to Hughesnet (things went downhill after that). In 2012 I found Exede (Viasat). I had to use internet at other people's homes to locate it and get it set up. I started with a plan that I believe they've phased out-- where I would get 10Gb a month but unlimited late night free zone for a few hours. It wasn't without problems, but the speed was actually pretty fast. But, over the years with webpage bloat (more fancy code, videos on almost every site, more images, etc) it wasn't enough. We ended up switching to the Freedom plan (150Gb/month with no free zone). The speeds got slower and it seems a bit less reliable (despite using the same modem and satellite-- only thing that changed was the price & data allowance).

Like Hughesnet, it is subject to outages due to weather. It also has some downtime for maintenance & there have been a few unexplained network outages due to problems. The customer service was vastly better than HN-- support is (or at least was) based in the US. I haven't had to call in awhile, although the last time I did call was over a long network outage where I was on hold for 4 hours & never got in touch with anyone. Right now, I'm a little annoyed with the service due to not being able to load videos even with the data extender turned off.

It doesn't have some of the features that HN had in terms of the modem software. The diagnostics are not very advanced, it doesn't tell you your usage (you have to load their website-- which is incredibly slow- taking about 5 min to load to see your usage and it's not even up-to-date). You can't reboot your modem from the modem page or from the website. You have to manually unplug it. I've been told you can text a certain # or something to have your modem remotely rebooted or you can have tech support do it for you if you can't get to your modem for some reason. But, since I have no cell signal & I don't get texts through wifi for some reason, I've never been able to do that.

The plan I have costs about $112 with tax. In addition to your monthly fee, you have to pay an equipment leasing fee that is about $10/month. State taxes apply to the initial sale & to the monthly fees. 

If you have absolutely no other options, it is good. We haven't gone over the limit for the freedom plan (but we were told we can have our plan canceled if we do). There are a lot of sacrifices to make & things to do to try to limit your bandwidth usage. Playing videos less frequently, playing lower res videos, using adblockers & flashblockers to stop auto-load videos, setting Youtube to not load automatically, etc. Latency is still rather high-- I get around 660 to 1200ms latency on games like World of Warcraft & Elder Scrolls Online. It's not good for video chatting due to the upload delay. Lately, I've been having issues with my modem saying it is "low on memory" and have to reboot it more often.

When you reboot your modem, you also have to reboot your router after your modem gets to 4 lights-- which can be a pain, but at least you don't have to static discharge the coaxial cable (which I had to do about twice a day with Hughesnet).

TL:DR?

Pros of Exede/Viasat
*Faster speeds than dialup
*Better customer service than Hughesnet (but then, I think an angry monkey flinging poo would give better CS than HN).
*More stable/reliable connection than HN seemed to have (HN would go out if a bee sneezed)
*No need to static discharge the coax cable for modem
*Built in surge protector in the modem (saved mine numerous times)
*Doesn't seem to eat up as much bandwidth as HN modem did
*On good days you can stream videos well, download games & music, get software updates, etc
*Modem interface shows you how long you've been on, signal strength, signal to noise ratio, cable resistance, number of failed loads, status (connected/disconnected) etc.
*Music you hear while on hold is nice (reminds me of something from one of the Sims games)
*You can buy extra data if you are close to or have gone over your limit-- I believe 1Gb is something like $10- not sure if it is taxed as I have never used it.
*IP address changes when you reboot modem so it is a bit harder to get hacked or pinned down
*Location does not display accurately so you can have a little more privacy/anonymity when posting or visiting sites 

Cons of Exede/Viasat
*Slow upload speeds causing high latency & delays-- leading to server time-outs, slow response in online games, & awkward delays in VOIP & video chatting.
*Long wait times to speak to customer service when things go pear-shaped
*Loss of signal due to weather-- rain, snow, etc (usually has to be fairly severe to take it out entirely, but does slow it down & make it a bit unstable-- causing lag spikes)
*Expensive to get decent amounts of data (If you want to do more than check e-mail, you're going to have to pay through the nose)
*Low data allowances compared to webpage bloat & common modern usage of the internet (it is NOT friendly with Netflix)
*Buffering when loading videos or just complete cessation of video loading if signal gets interrupted or during peak hours, or during bad weather
*Throttled speeds when users go over the limit (if you get a plan that has throttling), can be set so low that the internet is not usable at all
*Can have your service canceled if you go over the limit on "Freedom" plan
*Checking your usage is a pain bc the webpage you have to load is incredibly slow & is not up-to-date
*IP address changes sometimes make you have to re-verify your information on sites that think you are loading from a different location.
*IP addresses are shared/recycled so if someone gets IP banned from a site & you end up with that IP at some point, you will not be able to access the site
*Websites that track you by location will think you are in completely different places & not show you the right products/prices for your area unless you manually make changes
*Have to manually unplug modem to reboot it, unplug router (if you have one), and wait until 4 lights come on the modem before restarting the router
*Might have to wait to download large patches for games, software updates, etc-- and may have to go to a friend's house or public place with free wifi to download some things on a laptop & transfer to a desktop if the files are large enough
*Rarely any reimbursement for outages


Overall, it is better than Hughesnet & if it seems to be your only option, it's a decent choice. You'll have to weigh those pros and cons and also think about how you intend to use the internet.

What is your primary purpose of using the internet?
How much can you afford to pay for the service?
Can you stay within the limits that you can afford?
Are you ok with being throttled if you go over-- and possibly not having service during that time?
Are there any other options available to you?
What plans are available in your area?
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GabeU, Champion

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*Doesn't seem to eat up as much bandwidth as HN modem did
HughesNet modems don't "eat up bandwidth".  
*Slow upload speeds causing high latency & delays-- leading to server time-outs, slow response in online games, & awkward delays in VOIP & video chatting.
Upload speed does not have an effect on latency.  On the same system, whether one has an upload speed of 1Kbps or 1Gbps, the latency is the same.  
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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What the heck is static discharge of coax cable?
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Andy Schack

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I think it's taking the coax off and touching the center to ground which discharges any residual charge. 

We used to have to do this with older Dish equipment. The lnb would pretty much lock up and if you took the coax off and touched the center to the chasis of the rec, you could then hook it back up and it would go back to working. 

Andy
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Had Hughesnet internet (under various names in the past) for over 10 years. Never had to do this.
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GabeU, Champion

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Me, either.  I can't speak for Dish equipment, but I've never known HughesNet equipment to need this done.  I've never read of this on their support boards, either.  
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L. T. Scott

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Zane, thank you for a well thought out report it is very helpful. Could you please explain the static discharge of the coax cable I’ve never heard of that but it I’m willing to try anything. Incidentally I’m already paying in excess of $250 a month for the service I have.