Liberty Plan and the Free Zone

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To those of you who are considering the Liberty Plan make sure it is what you want. Because on the classic there is no getting the LNFZ back. So if you are on the 15GB or 25GB If I were you I really wouldn't switch because you are giving up 5GB or 15GB if you decide you don't like the Liberty Plan. You can only switch to the Essential if you don't like the Liberty Plan. If you are on classic 10 you are sacrificing the Free Zone for an Early Bird Free Zone. Not to mention it costs a lot for the Liberty Plans.
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TheCatWillStrike

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Posted 4 years ago

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Brian Shackelford

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Therein lies the rub of it....if you switch you cannot switch back.  Of course since I do not see any plans available still for my zip, I cannot confirm or deny the accuracy of the statement above.  Again we will just have to see how things play out.
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Jacqueline Tierney

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The plans are showing up for my area.  The Evolution plan which I am currently on is no longer shown available so maybe your area won't be getting them?  We might try it a month or two and see how it performs still undecided.
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Brian Shackelford

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Lol - My area still shows Exede is available - call my local dealer.  My guess is that unless you are a new customer going through a dealer you are going to be out of luck on getting anything new if you live in my area.  On the other hand, at least one local dealer is offering a repackaged Evolution plan, albeit the pricing is higher.  Oh well - I guess I should be happy I still have the classic plan and upped the CAP when I did since it appears I will be on that for quite some time.
(Edited)
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TheCatWillStrike

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If you are on Evolution and go to the Liberty Plan make sure it's what you want because from my understanding you will not be able to get your Evolution Plan back. You can only get the Essential.
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Old Labs (VS1-329-L12FZ)

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Joshua appears to be correct based on this official set of details provide elsewhere:

https://www.wildblueworld.com/forum/showthread.php?9219-New-things-to-come-in-early-2015&p=77913...

It also includes some rationale/reasoning behind the new offerings.
(Edited)
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TheCatWillStrike

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I love how they changed my post title from "Liberty Plan Warning" to "Liberty Plan and the Free Zone"
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Jacqueline Tierney

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If we don't try the plan we will be going to Hughes which offers 50 GB 8 am to 2 am and another 50 GB from 2 am to 8 am at a very competitive price.  (Like the Freedom plan of Exede, this is not available everywhere).  We already know that Hughes works about the same at this address (prior owners had it and we already talked to them about it).  I have also talked to people on the Freedom plan that are similar users to us that say they use about 40 to 50 GB per month on average, so if we continue shifting our computer updates to the night time period we should have more than enough GB to be comfortable to do what we want on the internet without severe speed restrictions.  As I've said before,  I am one of the users that the LNFZ and EBFZ are next to worthless.  If the Liberty plan can deliver the 1 mbps to 5 mbps and not cut people off completely we can live with in those parameters too so its a discussion of try Liberty or go ahead and schedule the install with Hughes.
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Chrissy Tempesta

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I know alot of people who have issues with the Hughesnet and i do not hear that about the Exede. I would definately try out the Exede. I think you'll be happier with Exede overall.
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Chrissy Tempesta

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Brian there should be plans in your area. Did you put your zip into www.exede.com, that will bring up the plans in your area.
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DJ

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Hughesnet was one big BIG nightmare for us in Idaho and when we had it in Mexico also. BAD
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zanne

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My concern is that while they claim the speeds will be between 1 to 5mb down, do they guarantee that it won't be below 1Mb down? And would games like World of Warcraft still work? What about the upload speed? Would that be reduced even lower or would it be at least 1Mb? I mean, its still faster than what I had the entire time I had Hughesnet (never got more than 300k dl speeds even with the 1.2Mb down plan).

As a Hughesnet survivor, I have to say to anyone who is considering using it-- DON'T do it! Their customer "service" is absolutely terrible. They outsource to India and you get people who barely speak English and who don't actually know anything-- they just read from scripts. They have a "deny everything" and blame the customer policy. Even when something is wrong on their end, they blame it on the customer and refuse to admit when something is wrong. If you get subjected to their "slowed" speeds (which meant NO speed on my connection) they won't let you speak to supervisors and will basically treat you like scum and hang up on you. I found out that even when I had not gone over my limit I was being secretly throttled and they refused to give me the speeds for which I was paying for. I ended up finding out by checking out the modem statistics and info on the advanced page and saw that I was being sneakily throttled. They really put the brakes on my connection after I made a complaint on DSLreports. It once took me 2 hours to explain a simple concept to one of their phone jockeys before the idiot finally got it. Some of them were just downright rude and one even shouted at me because he failed to comprehend what I was trying to explain and what I was saying didn't fit his script. I would NEVER go back to that company and, even though Exede is not perfect, I've had MUCH better customer service.

People with Hughesnet often get slower speeds than advertised and when they complain about the slow speeds, they are just told that speed is not guaranteed, but oh, they should upgrade to the higher plan because it will be better. But the higher plan doesn't guarantee higher speeds.

With Exede, I was getting faster speeds than advertised and the CS actually have senses of humor.

Anyway, I'm thinking of going to the Liberty plan, but I might miss my LNFZ.. As it is, I'm having to be awake right now to use the LNFZ, but it isn't great for my sleep schedule. But I do beta testing for games like WoW and sometimes they have like 20Gb patches for PTR...

I will say that I think the prices for the 12Gb liberty should be lower-- maybe $59 instead. I mean, its only 2Gb more than the 10 plan, and the LNFZ or earlybird plans are gone. Wish there was a way to keep LNFZ or EarlyBird and still have the Liberty Pass.
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Jacqueline Tierney

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There are extremely unhappy and happy customers for both Hughes and Exede.  It may depend on where you live and how full your beam is.  I knew someone where I used to live that could get WISP but had Hughes and loved it, the people that lived at this location where we live now also had Hughes and loved it and strongly encouraged us to go that way.  We went with Exede because the Evolution plan was a better fit for us at that time than anything Hughes was offering then.

That being said, I am now on the Liberty 12 plan and so far it was outstanding the first month.  We went over with 10 days remaining and never saw any performance change in our internet.  Speeds still tested around 10 mbps down.  I ran a couple videos just to test them and they streamed fine.  This time of year we are busy with a lot of outdoor things so we simply don't have time to stream movies so we definitely were in the light user category.

We were the type of user (and apparently from what one of the techs said on the board this is true for the majority of the customers) that the LNFZ was basically worthless to us.  I don't have the time to spend micro-managing videos and such.  I used it for updates to my computer to save data but basically I had quit watching any type of videos.  When i see a news video or similar I am interested in, I don't want to download it at night then watch it later, that defeats the purpose imo.  Now if I see a short video I feel like I can watch it.  I still set down the resolution to avoid pulling lots of data.  Also, the main type of streaming that interests us is streaming football and basketball games from my Alma Mater which obviously they don't play during the LNFZ. ;)

The thing to remember about the Liberty plans is that they data they give you is different than classic plans.  The "priority data" is data that guarantees you the higher speeds, once you go over you now continue to have access but your speeds may be slower when the beam is busy.  So in short they are somewhat of an unlimited plan as long as you don't abuse the system and become a data hog.  You will note that they say heavy users will experience slower speeds than light users so I am guessing they have a way to slow down people that try to monopolize the system.

I am not sure how your 20 GB downloads would work on this plan when you have them,  I am thinking if you can do those at times other than during the busy hours which they say tend to be from 5 pm to 3 am you probably would get along fine.  That would be a good question for a moderator to answer on how well Liberty works for people that have that type of download needs from time to time.  Other than that question I am thinking you'd be very pleased with the Liberty plan.
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Exede Lindsey

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Hi Jacqueline, thank you for your feedback in regards to the Liberty Plan. This package is essentially a great option for those who have it available with their area.  The Exede Liberty Plans give you and your family more access to the internet, starting with a set amount of Priority Data that comes with our best, 12 Mbps speeds. What’s great about Liberty is that, even if you go over your monthly data allowance, you’ll get the Liberty Pass, which will allow you to use more data at download speeds of 1 to 5 Mbps.
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Exede Beau

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Joshua, your points are certainly valid and correct. Here's something our colleague Chris said over on the other forum, that I think conveys the benefits pretty clearly:

Myself, I just hit my 12 GB limit on Liberty and it's 6:30PM in Denver. If this was last week (prior to Liberty), I would be confined to very basic web browsing and emails. Otherwise, I'd have to Buy More data or wait until midnight to do anything.

Today, I am getting speeds of around 5 Mbps, watching videos (albeit not HD) and listening to Pandora. I think that's pretty awesome, compared to the alternative.
There are people who have their LNFZ use so beautifully dialed in currently that they're much better off staying with what they have, and they're mostly the folks on this forum. The majority of our users are not scheduling things for the LNFZ, staying up to use the net after midnight, etc. so this is a better fit for them.

Either way, I hope you understand that we are trying to manage the limited capacity that satellites provide the best way we can. We want everyone to have a positive experience and it takes lots of network management in all sorts of ways to make that a reality.

Check out Chris' full post here: https://www.wildblueworld.com/forum/showthread.php?9219-New-things-to-come-in-early-2015&p=77913...
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Jacqueline Tierney

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Thanks for posting the link.  I'm thinking that in our case we won't lose anything by trying it out provided it doesn't lock us into another 2 year contract to try it.  If it works for us its much less hassle and expense than switching providers.
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Steve Frederick-VS1/Beam314, Champion

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Beau, it is strange that Exede is only offering the new plans in 25% of their beams, those that are underutilized. That leaves 75% f the beams with the old plans, nothing new available, and I am guessing that it means that 85 to 90 percent of the Exede subscribers have none of the new plans available to them, because of the number of subscribers on these beams. It is not saying much for all the hype over the last few months that Alex and others have been playing up.

Noticeably missing from the announcement is any indication that there would be some sort of data rollover program, an improved data meter, or even more important, an indicator for us to know that the LNFZ or EBFZ has actually been activated in our  modems. The free zone indicator would not take any more bandwidth, and only a few pennies per subscriber in software development costs, and would take care of the very common data losses that we are subject to because the free zone has not been implemented in our modem, as we download things. We only realize that we used a big chunk of data the next morning when it shows up on the meter.

Really shows up as a flop in my eyes. I am beginning to see that Exede eally does not "listen" to its customer base.

Steve Frederick
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Exede Chris, Official Rep

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Hi Steve, it's Chris (Exede product guy) again.  I am re-posting my response to this from the WildBlue Forum.  I'll also address the other areas you're concerned about.



With the launch of Liberty, we now have Liberty and Freedom plans in about half of our ViaSat-1 markets. We've expanded the availability of these new plans over the last 6-7 months. Each new set of plans that we've rolled out (Evolution, Freedom, Liberty) is an attempt to create services with friendlier data caps. We know the data caps are an issue for many customers. That's why we're continuing to try new things. We won't win everyone over on Liberty, but based on what we've seen in testing, many customers will feel like we've doubled/tripled/quadrupled their existing cap as a result of Liberty Pass. That's probably why you felt some hype coming from the other moderators. We are listening. But, I will admit the pace of expanding availability could be improved.
We're working on continued improvements to the usage meter, especially the UI that is shown in my.exede.net.  Several improvements will come out over summer and fall, including the ability to change plans and see more usage details.  I like the idea of a LNFZ/EBFZ indicator and will bring that up internally and see if that's possible.  

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Brian Shackelford

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Chris +1000 for the indicator.  While it has not been a problem for the last 2 or 3 months, it seemed to come up frequently prior to that.  The indicator as well as just displaying your usage for Free Zone vs. Non-Free Zone would be a big plus as well.  Heck I would be happy just to be able to log into my.exede.net and confirm that the free zone is active for a start :).  A usage meter that can be loaded on a PC and communicate back with the Exede servers seems like it should be pretty simple to implement as well - particularly since someone seems to have already done that.  I just don't want to pay someone else for software that seems like Exede could provide :)
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Knight Rider

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I guess my thing about the status meter being a former hughesnet customer is that I have to go out to a web page log in to to said page and wait for it to load to see my usage. With HughesNet I just key in the modem Ip and bam theres my usage meter a double bar graph one for anytime usage and another for my over night hours and a clock counting down the time till my over night usage starts and then how much time I have left till it ends. Exede has some neat stats that you can see in the modem but not really relevant to everyday life as the end user. Just my thoughts.

Kevin
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Steve Frederick-VS1/Beam314, Champion

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Chris, I appreciate your response, however, many of us have been asking for the LNFZ and EBFZ indicator for more than 2 years now, and have been getting the canned response that it sounds like a good idea and they will bring it up internally. This is important, since very often the modem doesn't get the message that it is time for the "free zone" and we get charged for our data when we are supposed to be getting data that is not being counted.
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TheCatWillStrike

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I have never had data taken from me when using the Free Zone. I start exactly at 3am and end at 8am.
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david, Champion

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It doesn't take but one time happening to you to make you nervous. I started DLing at 1:30am one night, Dled 5.3 gigs then got slowed. About 30 minutes after I got slowed the LNFZ actually started at almost 3:00am and I sped back up until the LNFZ ended that morning. After going through 4 or 5 people at Exede that morning I got 5 of the 5.3 gigs back.
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david, Champion

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Chris - "I like the idea of a LNFZ/EBFZ indicator and will bring that up internally and see if that's possible. "   is almost exactly what the Exede people have been saying for the 2 years I've been here. As easy as this would be to do (the modem is already getting a signal to turn the LNFZ on and off) and after almost 3 years it pretty much has to be a policy of Exede not to have one for some reason.
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Exede Chris, Official Rep

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I think the main reason you don't see an indicator is that we design the free zones to work precisely per the time of day.  The fact that we have customers who feel like they can't trust the clock is a failure on our part.  You deserve better than that.  This isn't lip service, and I hope you'll give us the chance to show you the improvements  over the coming months.  

One of the things you should notice about MyExede is the responsive design (shrink and re-size the screen and you'll see), which makes it work well across platforms (desktop, mobile, etc.).  This means that we're not too far from making MyExede into an app. 
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Big Al

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I'm wondering why MyExede cannot show us a data usage timeline. If I want to know when a big chunk of data was used I have to call Exede and have a representative (vaguely) tell me when it was. Even my cheap prepaid cell phone company allows me access to that information on the Web. 
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TheCatWillStrike

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A mobile app would be really nice. Another thing that would be really cool, if it's ever at all possible, is a real time data usage counter.
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Knight Rider

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I would like to see them just put the data meter in the modem it self so when i go to 192.168.100.1 I still see all the same stats as we do now but also add the data meter rather then having it online.  I think people would be able to keep up with it much better if it was on the modem homepage like HughesNet.  That or have the main homepage your data meter and maybe a support link to here and or help.exede.net and then have an advanced menu that shows all the stats that we normally see now..
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postman

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YES!

It is said a picture is worth a thousand words

https://community.exede.com/exede/topics/howdoinet.com/hbirds.html

Knight Rider, hindsight is a poor substitute for foresight. Seldom if ever do I see customers challenging a cash register.  Forgiveness in a short term transaction is a bitter pill for the corporate bottom line, yet the same forgiveness can build life long goodwill.

-binary buddha *vbg*
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zanne

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Customers may not challenge a cash register, but they sometimes challenge the cashiers. The key is that customers are give an itemized receipt that tallies up the costs. If they are given incorrect change or find that something was scanned more than once or an item rang up at a different price than was on the display, customers can use the receipt to show the error.

Unfortunately, we as customers are not given the equivalent of an itemized receipt for our usage-- and we really should be. This can help Exede to show their proof as well as allow customers to challenge it if they have proof that their usage was different or if they were unable to connect to the internet and it still counted toward usage.

I am also wondering if Exede uses QMT to throttle some customers even when they have not yet gone over their limits. I was reading that WildBlue used to do that back when the average webpage size was 320kb. Unfortunately, with custom fonts, images, flash, scripts, auto-load videos, and so forth; the average webpage now takes over 2Mb to load.
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Marcy Koplen

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It was not made clear (when I switched online) that I would be losing my free time between 12-5 AM. It was made to appear that it would all stay the same, except you wouldn't be shut down for going over the 15 Gig, which is the plan I was on.

For us, the 15 plan was perfect, as it allowed us to watch movies starting at midnight, or to download large size games, do updates to computer, watch youtube videos, etc.

 Then they make it sound like "18 Gig is very generous". Generous my behind--people who are on unlimited DSL can blow through 100-250 Gig a month.

If crying would do any good, I would cry, as I'm disabled, and I looked forward to midnight every night, as the computer is like my connection to the outside world.

So I'm paying $10 more a month to get probably at least 40-50 Gig less than what I used to use. That's just wrong.

Come November, I and my mother are both switching to Hughes net who has a plan that at least allows 50 Gig to be used between the hours of 2-8 AM, along with the 15 daytime Gig. 

I hope Exede loses a bunch more customers! It's not right to basically deceive customers who have been loyal and with them for years. I had been with them since 2008, and they've left such a bad taste in my mouth that I don't even want to stay with them.
(Edited)
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Knight Rider

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You miss understand the Liberty Pass.  When on the Liberty Pass you have "very loose" restrictions on how much data you can use.  MOST of of time you will not even see a change in speeds while on the Liberty Pass.  Now if you do go crazy and start using 50-60GB on the pass they will throttle you back to 2Mb/s DL speeds and during peak hours when there is a lot of congestion you could see speeds slow.  For the most part though the are very loose with data limits on the Pass portion of the plan.
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Marcy Koplen

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They say your speeds will be between 1-5 Meg. I had JUST gone over my 18 gig limit two nights ago, and my speed was reduced to almost half of the 1 almost instantly, so I'm not even getting the 1-5 speed they're promising after just going over my limit.

We were still allowed full speeds between 12-5, even if we'd gone over, and there was no limit on how much you used during that time. For me, and how my family used the other plan, that's what we really needed. We won't be able to even watch any movies now because of the drastically reduced speeds.

And as I stated, since I'm disabled, I'm on the computer all the time, so it's not hard for me to use the 18 myself before the month is half gone-and I don't even watch movies when it's just me here. People who have DSL are able to completely do away with their cable or tv satellite, because they have no speed reduction or limit to what they use. For people who are in the country, we're just taken advantage of, as they know we have a very limited access to internet.

 I will be happy to switch over to Hughesnet to get 65 Gig of full speed, unlike Exede, where I can only get 18 for basically the same cost. Exede is not doing it's customers ANY favors with this plan, and Hughesnet will likely be getting a lot of Exede's unhappy customers.

I had always tried to get others to switch to Exede, because I felt they did more right by their customer base, and I succeeded in getting several to switch over. I will no longer recommend them, and I know for a fact they are going to lose some of the ones who switched.
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Knight Rider

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DSL is a totally different technology.  You are getting digital internet through your phone line with that which is backed by massive trunk lines.  With satellite you are limited the the ability of the bird in the sky.  So they have to take that ability and divide that out between all 650k customers so everyone has to learn to share.  Now why your speeds dropped that much while on the pass I'm not sure only exede could answer that question.
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Marcy Koplen

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I understand the difference between DSL and satellite, but my point remains the same as far as what we're getting for the price we pay.

And yeah, my speeds dropping so significantly immediately after going over is a lot of the reason I'm so upset--there's no excuse for that.
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J&J

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Hughes offers so much data because they are so slow.  They'll offer 50 GB but on a solid download at their speed it will take all month to use that much data.  They can't loose but you better have a lot of  patience.
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Marcy Koplen

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When was the last time you tried Hughes? From what I understand, they did have that issue before, but have gotten it resolved recently? My mom had it 3 years ago, and super slow speeds were why I talked her into Exede. But I called just today, and they explained that it's different now. So do you have current knowledge of this issue still going on?
(Edited)
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Keri Sage

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So i switch to the liberty 10 and pay 10$ more a month.so they don't tell you that liberty pass works only during the day and not at night i am at work during the day.so my speed is the same as the old plan i was on.liberty plan is not worth it  
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Steve Frederick-VS1/Beam314, Champion

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If your beam is congested, speeds will be low during the times when there are people using the internet.  It won't matter what plan you are on.

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