Pointed Question Regarding Recent Data Allowance Increase and Price Drop

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Now, first off let me be clear, I am not complaining.  Not one bit.  Yet, I do ponder the following questions and would love some answers. 

1.  Why can Exede now offer more bandwidth in highly congested areas such as Beam 329 when we have been told repeatedly it simply was not possible due to congestion and the high utilization in the area?

2.  Why can Exede now afford to drop its rates by so much when #1 is the case?

3.  Does Exede foresee any increase of problems in the Beams where they are offering higher data caps at the lower prices?

Forgive me if these seem like stupid questions, but for a very long time users have been clamoring for higher data caps and lower prices and Exede has repeatedly (and successfully I might add) made the case that this is just the cost of Satellite and there isn't much to be done about it.

Then another company launches a satellite and offers lower prices and suddenly Exede can afford to drop pricing and increase data caps to meet the challenge brought forth by the new satellite going up and the plans the other company is offering.

It seems that one of three things is true:

1.  Exede could have done this sooner, but chose not to so as to ensure the max return on investment for current data plans.

2.  Exede doesn't really have the capacity to do this, but is doing it now to try to keep customers from switching providers before the new Exede satellite can launch.

3.  Exede has lost enough users in areas to the other company that #1 is no longer true due to the loss of customer base, and #2 is also not true due to so many users leaving Exede.

I doubt anyone at Exede can give the actual answer, but I would love to know why these can be offered now, when it simply was not possible before.  We may not get the real answer, but I figure if nothing else this can make for a lively discussion.

Conspiracy Theorists ... Begin Now!
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Brian Shackelford

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Posted 1 year ago

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El Dorado Networks

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Nothing complicated about it. Competition = lower prices, pure and simple. That's the Free Market System in a nutshell.

For any company looking to stay in business, half a loaf is "usually" better than none at all.
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Brian Shackelford

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I am sure that is the reason they are doing what they are now at Exede, but the underlying question is how is Exede able to do it now when the argument was they couldn't do it before due to such limited capacity?
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Gregory Davis

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Not sure what BEAMS we're talking about but it could be loss of customers on beams that were heavily congested, a corporate decision to realocate capacity, or unused capacity that was earmarked for other regions (undersold), or a combination of all the above (or ....). The point is that HughesNet GEN5 was launched late 2016 and has NOW being pushed into USE i.e. with a cheaper price and more data (monthly cap) of course with a two year commintment.
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Brian Shackelford

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I am in one of the most congested beams. Now it is possible that many customers have left Exede but I just don't see that many people jumping ship in the short time Grn5 has been available for purchase.
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El Dorado Networks

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the underlying question is how is Exede able to do it now when the argument was they couldn't do it before due to such limited capacity?
That was then; this is now.

Any company that stubbornly clings to what they once touted, instead of pivoting to meet changing, competitive market conditions, runs the serious risk of going out of business.
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Brian Shackelford

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I agree, so then the premise of the previous argument of there only being so much capacity so they simply could not offer before what they are offering now is negated. It would seem that they could have offered more data before and chose not to do so, only now being forced to do so as a countermeasure to a competitor offering more.

So, then how should I feel as a customer knowing that what I had been told previously by a company may not accurate? It just seems suspect that suddenly there is ability and capacity to offer higher data caps when the argument has been they were full up. Then there is the other side, maybe they are full up and just offering these plans in the hopes they can make it work until their new sat goes up later this month and goes online later this year. If that is the case then again that is now detrimental to the quality of the product being delivered which is also something Exede has touted.

Don't get me wrong , I am not asking why they are doing it now, I am asking how can they do it now when it was not possible before?

I guess there is a possibility some commercial, government or military bandwidth has been freed up by another competitor in the market and that space is now being offered to us now in the form of higher caps. That is the only thing that makes any sense in my mind.
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Brian, Champion

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The price of anything is not determined by capacity to deliver. It's determined by what people will pay.

Kudos to Eldorado for answering #2, Section 1, with precision and brevity
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Gregory Davis

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Looking st what Viasat's (Wildblue/Viasat) plans were for Viasat 1 - they allocated most of the capacity to the EAST coast of the US, some to the West Coast. It also appears that they also serve Alaska and Hawaii - Not sure how far reaching this one satellite can reach (effectively). Some of their plans look like they are going to cover South America as well. They have also been trying to sell some of this capacity to the commercial airline industry. It is possible that some of these areas did not or have not reached their commecial (sales) potential. They have over the life span of Viasat 1 have evolved in their (potential learning) of not just the capacity but also where the demand is. My guess is that the Freedom 150 plan is only being offered to areas where they are undersold/under utilized in that Viasat1's service areas. They maybe re-allocating capacity to these and other service areas to not just attaract more customer's but also help their bottom line. We currently live in an area that Viasat is no longer taking new customers - one might read this as being SOLD OUT and at times congested especially durin the PEAK HOURS. I have also noticed several signs advertising GET HIGH SPEED INTERNET call 800-xxx-xxxx and at the bottom right of the sign is a "Hughesnet GEN4" label. Compettition in the most part will be good for us folks with limited options. I have said (often) on this forum that I'm looking forward to what options Viasat2 (& beyond) will bring to us.
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Gillian Ernsberger

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Believe me the Freedom 150 plan is only giving me a ping of 798 download 0.41Mbps upload 0.66Mbps this am which we keep being told is the best time!! We have been told by workers that the Freedom plan was oversold and Exede were losing out so they turned off a beam!! $116 + of nothing!!
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Tim Spake

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If they get an increase in dollars yet give you no increase in speed, it's a win for them.
You cant get close to 150 when download is under 2Mbps.
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Alex, Viasat Corporate Communications

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Hey Brian: Unlike something more tangible like a phone or a hamburger, we sell bandwidth, which is always in flux. We may have beams, as you know, that get pretty full, and then we don't have so much bandwidth to sell in those. Other beams aren't as full (or people leave) and we can offer more robust data plans in them. As you surmised, competition certainly has its place in the equation, but we're also careful to manage our network so that service remains reliable for everyone in a particular beam. If beam '123' gets to capacity, we'll restrict sales on it. There's a complex series of calculations that go into what we can offer where, but the bottom line is we try to offer the best plans we can in any given area while also keeping a close eye on network health.
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Tim Spake

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So how does that help me with slow speeds? I get same answer, "up to"
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Alex, Viasat Corporate Communications

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Tim, if you'd like us to take a closer look at your service to troubleshoot slow speeds, ping us at exedelistens@viasat.com 
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Tim Spake

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I have pinged too many times already. The problem is not at my end. Since I have a contract, my slow speed falls on deaf ears. I get their same replies to my complaints and never any results. I will do my best to give you the best word of mouth advertising that I can since it does no good to contact customer service. Put yourself in my shoes, you come home from work and can't use Internet because speeds are under 2mbps. Yet they are higher during day or at 3:00AM in morning. I might as well use 4G on phone and get a couple of phone contracts.