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Thread: Internet provider for rural areas?

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    DIY Member SD44's Avatar
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    Default Internet provider for rural areas?

    We moved outside of town about 10 miles. I'd like to get internet, but don't want to get dial-up and don't want to pay $70 a month for it. Anyone know of any providers that are reasonable? AT&T has a service for $37.50, which is the price range I want, but they don't offer it in my area.

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    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    I don't think you will find anyone to fill those requirements. So what are you willing to change? Dial up or more money per month? I think they are the only possibilities. Check Hughesnet, but then it may cost more than $40 a month. I have mobile satellite on my motor home for $80/month.
    Last edited by Gary Slusser; 05-07-2008 at 05:19 PM.
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    DIY Member Squ1rrel's Avatar
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    Also, if you are in a sparsely populated area, you may have difficulty finding a company that had run repeaters all the way out there. I would recommend speaking to your local phone company or cable company, or even a local apartment complex, if there is one. Oftentimes, apartments are well aware of what is available in their area.

    Also, is AT&T referring to their DSL service, or their Fiberoptic? The Fiberoptic is faster, and not in as many places, but generally AT&T has DSL anywhere they have phone service.

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    DIY Member SD44's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Squ1rrel View Post
    Also, if you are in a sparsely populated area, you may have difficulty finding a company that had run repeaters all the way out there. I would recommend speaking to your local phone company or cable company, or even a local apartment complex, if there is one. Oftentimes, apartments are well aware of what is available in their area.

    Also, is AT&T referring to their DSL service, or their Fiberoptic? The Fiberoptic is faster, and not in as many places, but generally AT&T has DSL anywhere they have phone service.

    That's the deal, I don't have - or want - a landline. We have cellphones and that is enough.

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    DIY Junior Member ejf's Avatar
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    Default Cellular?

    Another option might be cellular depending on where you live. Many providers (e.g. at+t, sprint, verizon) offer ~1-200kbps service over a cellular card that plugs into a usb or pccard slot for around $50/month. The speed will depend on coverage in your area, though.
    -Eddie

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    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    There are wireless internet services in some areas that use a tower to transmit and receive internet. You do have to have a clear line of sight to the tower, but that might be a possibility. I use cable which works very well for me. It's high speed, but it ain't cheap. I had wireless for awhile, and it worked well sometimes, but there is a huge tree in a direct line with my house and the tower that blocked me off in the summer when the leaves were on the tree. The techs tried every trick they could think of to get me a dependable signal, but I finally gave up and went cable. Rule of thumb, the faster the service the more expensive it is. As Cookie pointed out, ya wanna dance, ya gotta pay the fiddler.

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    Wildblue is another satellite internet provider that starts at only $49.95 per month. Of course they get you with the hardware and install charges up front.

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    DIY Junior Member tinner666's Avatar
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    You have a choice of about 5000 providers to choose from.
    http://www.thelist.com/
    Frank Albert

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    In case your thinking about Satellite service. DirecTV screwed me real good once. I won't go into all the details, but I would never use them again. Their service was slow and it had a bad hesitation, where it would just do nothing for several seconds. I asked what the problem was and they told me it was a Virus that they would have it fixed soon. Once my 30 day trial ran out, I found out it was not a Virus at all. It always worked that way, but I was too late to cancel Cost me over $500.00 for 1.5 months service. Not counting the hardware I took a loss on.

    bob...

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    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Unless you use the internet very sparingly, the cell phone is not a good option. Cable is about the best for high speed, reliability, and high usage. Surf all you want, not additional money. No cable? Then do check out availability of the wireless I mention earlier. This is not satellite, it is a low power transceiver that works line of sight only. It's broadband and as I said before, if there is nothing to obstruct the signal, it works quiet well. They are locally owned, so you will have to do some research to see if there is a provider in your area.

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    Like an engineer alternety's Avatar
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    Two little points about earlier posts.

    DSL is not available anywhere you can get a phone. There are limits to how many feet you can be from a central office for DSL that is not a problem for a regular phone connection. In some cases the wires may be too old and in too poor condition even if you are close enough.

    Satellite communications inherently have some of the delay you are talking about. The signal has to travel about 44,000 miles to get where it is going and another 44,000 to get a response back. Just the propagation at the speed of light is in the order of 1/2 second for the response. Add another 1/4 to 1/2 second for ground processing, and whatever response time gets added by the internet and the server you are contacting and it can add up. How bad the provider is about getting from the satellite ground station to the internet can have a large impact as well. But the is a minimum just because light is so pokey.

    You probably don't want to play online games this way.

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    DIY Hillbilly Southern Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alternety View Post
    ....The signal has to travel about 44,000 miles to get where it is going and another 44,000 to get a response back. ....
    Wow! I never thought that would make a difference. I always think of the "speed of light" as instantaneous.

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    Master Plumber Redwood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Southern Man View Post
    Wow! I never thought that would make a difference. I always think of the "speed of light" as instantaneous.
    Actually Southern Man the speed of light is far from instantaneous. It just depends on how big of a picture your little mind is capable of seeing.

    When you looked out the window this morning and saw sunlight, it took 8 minutes for that light to get from the sun to the earth.

    One of the many communications difficulties that NASA has with their space probes is the fact that they have no real time data and ways of relaying commands instantly based on that real time data.

    Lets take for instance communications with the Mars Rovers Spirit & Opporitunity. A command to drive is given for a given distance that they have plotted as safe. The signal to do so is sent from Earth and takes 4 minutes to travel to Mars. Data sent back showing the consequences of that move take 4 minutes to return to Earth.

    Imagine driving a radio control model truck around your yard with an 8 minute lag in knowing where it is and what it's doing!

    Let's move out a little further to Saturn and the Cassini probe. It has a one way time of 1 hour and 14 minutes.

    Let's move out a little further to the Voyager 1 probe which is the furthest man made object. A signal from Earth to Voyager 1 takes 14 hours for a one way trip.

    Alpha Centauri the closest star to our solar system is 4.37 light years away from us. That would be the distance light travels in 4.37 years....

    Lets look out even further to what the Hubble Space Telescope is seeing. Using Gravitational Lensing where the telescope uses the gravity of groups of distant galaxies to pull the light from galaxies even more distant into view are looking at light that has been traveling so long that it left very near the creation of the universe and only today is reaching us.

    How big is your mind?


  14. #14
    Like an engineer alternety's Avatar
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    And it is even worse in wire; but there is a whole lot less wire in the circuit. But at modern semiconductor speeds, even a little distance counts. There is work to get pieces of integrated circuits to use light to talk to another location on the same chip. They need this for acceptable speeds vs the traces within the integrated circuit. Features on the current best manufactured complex chips are in the 32 nanometer range. Small enough that the size of a photon of visible light is too big to use to make a "photo" mask for etching the device. UV is extending things, but using individual electrons and moving into X-rays is being looked at. Individual semiconductor devices can switch in femtoseconds. Picosecond switching is not uncommon in products.

    Small and fast are pretty dependent on the scale of reference.

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    In the Trades maintenanceguy's Avatar
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    I'm rural. We were too far from the central office for DSL, no cable in our area, and even dialup was awful because our rural phone lines hummed and crackle all the time. We lose phone every time it rains and it's practically unusable whenever the wind blows.

    About a year ago, I got sprint broadband for $60/month. I was hoping to do voip over it and get rid of our local phone company but every speed test I do shows that the speed is fine but there are other problems I don't completely understand.

    Other than that, life on the internet has never been better. I don't know how we survived without high speed for 10 years.

    Now I just need to figure out how to use my new digital TV converter box.

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