Tips To Help You Manage Your Data

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  • Updated 1 year ago
  • (Edited)
In today’s fast paced world, streaming is becoming a very attractive alternative to traditional cable and satellite plans. As more exclusive TV series appear on services such as Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime,the desire to subscribe to these services are shifting a lot of viewing habits.This trend likely won’t die off anytime soon as more movie studios and channels such as Disney and CBS opt for digital streaming services.


Unfortunately, streaming can leave quite an impact on data usage. A single feature length movie in HD alone can eat 2-3GB of data and binging through a hit new series can lead you down an even  bigger path of data destruction. Fortunately, our Unlimited plans have resolution caps to soften the blow and allows for more usage when streaming and our Liberty Plans have an optional data extender that will help as well. In addition to the restrictions of data on satellite internet service, some DSL and Cable providers are implementing data limits for their customers as streaming continues to strain network traffic and consume data.

Currently we  do not recommend “cord cutting” with Viasat Internet --for the most part. Answering the question “How much TV do you watch a week?” is very subjective depending on the user's case. Binge-watching a full series with a movie nightcap may be“average” for some while others may take a less-is-more approach to streaming. So depending on your streaming habits you may not want to cut the cord just yet!

With that said you can still enjoy streaming on Viasat internet by following a few tips:

1.      Data management: The most effective way to make sure your favorite show doesn’t kill your data is to keep an eye on your usage at account.viasat.com. By doing this, you can pace yourself and enjoy your streaming! You can sign up for text alerts too. Text JOIN to 20715 to opt in. You can download the mobile app too! To see all of your data management options, click here

2.      Using the Video Data Extender: Naturally services like Netflix or Youtube are going to stream at the best default setting possible, which can drain data quickly. On Liberty and Classic plans turning on the data extender will greatly reduce the impact by toggling to a lower video resolution. If you are on an unlimited plan already you have a pre-set cap on video streaming resolution.

3.      Changing to a higher data plan- If you’re hitting your cap early each month, you might not be on the best plan for your needs. If you have the option to upgrade to a plan with more data you may find yourself more comfortable in a higher data plan. To check to see which plans are available, go to account.viasat.com.

4.      Late Night Free Zone: If you’re on one of our classic plans with a late night free zone, you could download some titles during that time frame to watch the next day as well. Keep in mind that you’ll want to engage the download once the Free Zone window opens and complete it before it closes or it will count towards your data.



As always if you have questions about your data or usage feel free to email us at viasatlistens@viasat.com
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Brad, Viasat Employee

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Posted 1 year ago

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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Thanks Brad. I see that commercial for Directv Now and just cringe. They don't want you to use their infrastructure, they want to you to piggy back off somebody else. It is just not realistic or practical for satellite internet users.

One of the dangers in advertising "unlimited" data plans.
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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I love option 4.
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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It is great! The only reason I gave it up is i was offered Freedom for a great price. 150GB of data is enough for me, even watching 1080p streaming.
(Edited)
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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Ha.  I used 300 GB one month on Liberty 12.  Can't do that with the Freedom plan.
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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But I don't need 300GB. Nor do I have to worry about scheduling big downloads, I just do them.
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Bradley

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So maybe for next week touch on the video extender feature. For example, when speeds are marginal to stream 480p, lots of buffering makes streaming unwatchable. Sometimes even when speeds are sufficient, I feel video is throttled too heavily. Maybe have a conversation with the powers that be in setting the parameters for video optimization a little higher? I’d like to myself. If we are paying for data caps and not speed anyhow, as we are often reminded, why not allow people to blow through the data however we choose? Freedom people do. Liberty people can during free zone. Why aren’t unlimited users offered the same opportunity during free zone hours?

Obviously unlimited plans are more heavily throttled because of higher data caps in an effort to discourage streaming and also to squeeze more subscribers into service on any particular beam.

We get it, ViaSat is not encouraging streaming though the world is trending that direction. May even see the end of physical dishes and receivers at some point. What then? Everyone thought ViaSat 2 would change all this. It hasn’t and won’t.

Most intelligent people see the writing on the wall and reluctantly accept reality. Disappointing but it is what it is. Last week no new subscribers were being allowed on my beam. This week all the unlimited plans are back up. ViaSat 1 plans.

I can’t rely anymore on sufficient prime time speeds to stream a movie anymore even in glorious 480p. This is all well below my priority data. When ViaSat 1 unlimited plans are the priciest plans available (not including ViaSat 2 because it’s simply not available here), think about where the value is for those consumers.
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Matthew Carey

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I also have the freedom 150 plan. A month ago I was you Veteransatuser. I was saying 150 is plenty. It was for the past Year and half. For some reason starting last month and now this month seems to be the same trend it isn't. My data is being used at an amazing rate. Nobody can seem to explain this to me. They assure me no way they could be wrong on the data used. 
When will unlimited be offered in my area? Nobody knows. When I call in they all try to sell me a lower data plan. Hello I called because my data is getting used why would I want a lower plan? 
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Because it is "unlimited" data?
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Matthew Carey

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NO I didn't say it was unlimited. I never worried about my usage because 150 GB seemed like plenty. Something seems have changed in the past month with how they monitor it. My data is being used up at an amazing rate. I ran out last month. I also went from around 45GB Sunday used to 91 GB used today Tuesday. We have done nothing new or changed anything to make for higher usage. 
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Windows updates?  Other automatic updates you are not aware of?  Could be a number of things. 
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Brad, Viasat Employee

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Hi Matthew

We can look at your data but keep in mind due to privacy we can't see super-detailed usage. We can see what type of stuff is using the data and what dates used more data and a rough idea of time periods.

If you want a breakdown by device or anything like that you may want to look into a 3rd party tool that can give you those specifics or a 3rd party router. Otherwise shoot an email over to viasatlistens@viasat.com and one of my teammates or myself will take a look.
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Jim16

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Matthew, do not give up your Freedom Plan.  Switching to an "unlimited" plan will not solve your data issue.  Something is using it more than before and you need to find that out.  There is no other plan that is better than Freedom.  People that have switched from Freedom to an unlimited plan have all regretted it.
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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Give me Liberty (Freedom is good too) or give me steak!
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Brad, Viasat Employee

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Agreed with Jim16. 

Can't do any mulligans on that one. We literally cannot return to that plan if it's not a current offer (more than likely the case). We allow people to be Grandfathered into plans without forcing them to change but any change to the account "trying a new plan out" or going into vacation mode you're only able to go to the current plans in the area.
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Hfcomms

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But it's always the ISP's fault when the customer doesn't read the agreement before they sign up for the service....right?  Would you buy a car without reading everything your agreeing to or any other major purchase?

Don't grumble at Viasat because your used to cable Internet and can't leave your TV on streaming 24/7.  You and me, the customer has a responsibility here too and that is knowing your plan and what you can do and what you can't do. 

I have nothing to do with Viasat but I am a long time satellite Internet consumer first with Hughes and now with Viasat and these current systems run rings around legacy systems but will probably never be like cable or fiber Internet.  So you have to be proactive and manage your data usage....either that or move back into town.

With the 'unlimited' plans be aware of the soft caps as if your a pig and go over the set amount your going to get throttled back even if your beam isn't full.  I have one of the Liberty plans and even on the 12Gb plan I made do.  I then upped it to 25Gb and now on 50Gb.  On the 50Gb I've never used it all up.  If I have large downloads such as TV shows or movies in HD I use a download manager and let it run after 3am during the free period being as I have a legacy liberty plan on Viasat 1.

These current systems from both providers actually are light years ahead of what they were even 5 years ago and they're going to get better but we as the end user have to know the limitations before we agree to it and it does need in most cases a little bit of effort on our part to maximize the performance and to stay within the limits.
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Honestly, I don't see it light years ahead of five years ago. My speed is no better than 2012. The ONLY difference now for me, which happened just a few months ago, is I no longer restrict myself from doing large downloads just during the free zone.
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Hfcomms

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I don't know what Wildblue used to be like 5 years ago as I've only been on Viasat for a year and a half but 5 years ago I was on a Hughes 7000 modem running off a transponder on Galaxy 16.  I had a 250Mb daily cap IIRC and the very best download speed was occasionally touching 1mbps and usually average 500 to 750 kbps and upload was so slow that it would take 5 minutes to upload a single picture. 

So from my experience compared to an older Hughes plan getting 50Gb a month with a 3 hour free period and up to 12Mb download speeds is like the difference between night and day for me.
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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I was an Exede customer five years ago and I completely agree the Liberty Plans are light years ahead of what I had five years ago.

Back then if you used up all of your priority data, you could expect speeds of 256k or less no matter what the time of day was.

Now I get speeds up to 5 mbps outside of the primetime hours when on the Liberty Pass. That's way better than how it used to be.
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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The Liberty plan has been around for at least a couple years. Befire that Evolution.

Hughesnet 7000 vs. Exede back in the day? The old Wildblue system was better than the 7000.