Internet Provider

I enjoy this forum but unfortunately my current internet provider is Verizon through my cell phone. I have a low level cell signal and I bought a Verizon specific antenna and amplifier but that still does not cut it. Many nights it is so slow I just shut down my computer and do something else.

It takes over an hour to upload a cell phone photo to this forum even after I edit the picture in Adobe Lightroom to cut down the size.

I cannot get DSL from my local phone company. The only other options are:

  1. Dialup 56K for about $10.00 a month plus buying a modem.
  2. Hughes Net Satellite Internet which is between $100-150.00 a month
  3. Viasat Satellite Internet which is between $100-150.00 a month.

My question is does anyone use Dialup that is on this forum and is it fast enough to keep you from pulling your hair out. I thought I heard the handshake tones for the last time about 20 years ago.

The Satellite options are there but the cost is quite high.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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We used dial-up just before we got FIOS, and it was slow enough that anything beyond e-mail or basic messaging on usenet (mostly text-based) waited until I went to work.

40kbps (the typical throughput on a modem) is a fraction of the average upload speed measured in mbps — I’d suspect that it’s more likely some local bottleneck than the actual cell phone connection.

What sort of connection to your phone are you using from your computer?

Well Internet connections outside urban areas has been and will remain an issue. I am fortunate that the county realizing that Carriers were not interested in investing in the area decided about 10 years ago to address the issue by supporting a local Internet co-op and letting them piggyback on the regional fibre network that provides services to towns. They provide services in rural areas using mostly high-speed point to point wireless. I used to have a 4Mbps service and I was having problems every time I had to update any of my devices. After several complaints, they installed a newer system in my area and I now get 22Mbps download while not what I could get in an urban area, it more than enough for my current needs. There are plans to seek financing for installing fiber throughout the county to provide municipal services as well as serve the population. The fiber would pass in areas where that are approximately 15 addresses per mile.

Other neighbors for some reason (they may not have line of sight to the Internet tower for example) use cellular and satellite services and pay more for crappier service. The local telephone company also offers ADSL for about the price I pay but the service is so poor that it is akin to using dialup. Carriers want you to move to cellular but they do not upgrade the infrastructure very quickly in rural areas because they get better ROI in upgrading urban centers.

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Yeah, in the U.S., the problem of our low population density once you get away from urban areas is a big problem — hopefully 5G will solve this once and for all — it’ll be nice to finally get something for giving up analog TV.

Nope, it will not be deployed in rural areas, it will only increase coverage density in urban areas not to mention that the distance from the cell site to the user will have to be much shorter in order to offer the performance expected. That means many many more small cell sites and an underlying fiber network to support it. Since there is a low density in rural areas of both USA and Canada, there will only be pockets in the larger towns and nothing outside. BTW, I worked in the field of telecommunications for 30 years so I know a bit about how carrier think.

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That’s interesting (and unfortunate) — I hadn’t realized the range limitation — hopefully there will be further research into something which would be workable for this. Isn’t there some part of the old analog TV spectrum which is suited to nationwide broadband? I haven’t been following it, but my understanding is that Google was stymied in buying the block nationwide which they wanted?

I used to use Excede when I lived in the mountains. Closest thing to cable Internet speeds for satellite. We used to stream HD Netflix all month long. Maybe cost $100 a month for the plan we had. But I have tried Hughes, direct tv, and a few others. This was by far the best.


The spectrum is the old UHF band 700MHz, it is great for penetration through foliage and buildings but it does not carry as much information as higher bands. 700MHz was suggested as an overlay network for 5G to provide continuous service between areas and yes it could address some of the rural needs but it is not a magic bullet. That bandwidth also has to be divided to all users in the area being served by that cell tower. Of course Google first wants to have a foot in the door but I think would be interested in deploying in urban areas where there is more money to be made. Installing cell towers is very expensive especially in rural areas where they tend to be on top of mountains or very high to provide coverage to a large area. There are dozens of companies with licenses to operate in rural areas but they don’t because they can get better ROI in larger centers. They are not worried about competition for the underserved areas because they all think the same.

In addition to 5G, there are a number of low orbit satellite constellations that are being planned and would provide service almost everywhere but I suspect that affordability will be an issue for regular folks just like Iridium satellite phones have not replaced cell service in rural areas but it has provided a service in remote areas and for ships, military, emergency and foreign aid because it is the only game in town.


Thanks to those that replied. Mjmlk69088 Michael replied that he thought that Excede/Viasat is the best for satellite internet. I had looked at both Viasat and Hughes Net and concluded that Hughes Net might be best for me based on data/speed. This is interesting that based on your real world experience you think that Viasat would be best. My reasoning for Hughes Net was based on they give 25MBPS speed, which is never reached, but had different data limits that for the level I think I need was about $50.00 a month cheater than viasat. Way back I had Hughes Net Gen 2, now Gen 5, and that was painfully show and VPN would not work at all. Both Hughes Net and Viasat state that VPN will most likely not work for satellite service.

So I will reconsider which satellite service to get based on the advise in this topic. I just know that my Verizon Cell Phone is not cutting it and dialup would seem to be no better. Part of the decision is about money. If I could get DSL from my phone company it would only be $15.00 a month, My Verizon bill is $65.00 a month with unlimited data, phone and text. The satellite would be an additional $100-$150.00 a month when I am already paying the $65.00 to Verizon for unlimited with a big asterisk on the unlimited. Like most “Unlimited” plans in theory you get unlimited but they give you a straw so small you can only get one drop of data at a time that is not Unlimited. Plus if you go over 25gb of data they may or may not throttle you to a lower speed. So how does a tiny stream of data and limiting your speed at an arbitrary point equal unlimited. This is why marketing people make so much money. The marketing types figure out how to promise one thing and give you the polar opposite and then in the fine print tell you unlimited does not really mean unlimited as any normal human would interpret it.

I will have to break down and get satellite or go crazy with what I presently have. Thanks everyone that replied.


I’m sure you have already checked but I have to admit I am curious if AT&T provides its “Fixed Wireless Internet” service with the large antenna equipment installed on the roof. They are part of the Connect America Fund rural initiative and are supposed to be rolling out internet in rural areas and are supposed to deliver a specified minimum speed. Also a wireless telecom veteran here so its more professional curiosity than anything else.

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I feel your pain. Here in NW Arkansas, I was about 4 miles from town.75k or so folks, so not a hamlet. I could only get satellite through dish network. Was actually hughs satellite. With their tv service only about $75 or so a month. But a very low data cap. Like 20 gb per month. So no streaming at all. Above cap it was dialup slow.
Otherwise was poor phone internet.

Local power company, which is a coop started installing fiber cable about 3 yrs ago. We’ve been on it about a year and it is gigabit service. Wow what a difference.

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I have not checked with AT&T but I will. I have neighbors that have AT&T Cell service and it is poor in this area.

I am in an electric cooperative and they send out a monthly magazine and they mentioned they may maybe sometime in the future provide internet over the electric lines. I will call them and check but future plans are murky at best and I really need to do something now. I have put up with this for 5 years and my patience has run out. I used to work for Sun Microsystem and then Oracle and worked with 10G in computer rooms. It is so frustrating to get .1 MBPS from Verizon. There is another cell provider in the area called CellularOne but they only work locally and I travel. Since my Verizon works so poorly at home I only use for internet with the amplifier but when I travel it works perfectly.

If I could not get phone service my state public utility commission would step in but they do nothing about DSL internet from the phone company. Even more frustrating my neighbors on both sides of me have DSL but you have never heard so many excuses and changing stories from a phone company about why I cannot get DSL.

So before I go to the extreme expense of satellite I will check on your suggestions. Thanks

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If you have close dsl neighbors, keep pushing. Way in past my close neighbors did, and it took me persistently calling until I got someone with a brain that looked at more than a computer screen in India


The reason I went with excede was because of the faster speeds and truly unlimited data. Looking at my old bill it was $125 a month, now they charge $150 for the service i had, I got 30 mbs in the mountains were cell phones don’t even work. My wife and kids stream tv like no tomorrow. And we were using 1.2 -1.6 terabytes of data a month… I paid the extra for no service contract. I know hueghes net had something about “extra” data late at night. 24 month contract, and you can quickly go through their data cap if not careful in just a few days.

I have talked to Windstream Communications so many times. I wrote a letter to the CEO in Little Rock AK and all that got me was some info-babe calling to say how sorry they were that were going to do absolutely nothing. My county only has 25,000 people in it and my old neighborhood in Houston had that many in just my section. So the economy of scale is not on my side. Frankly rural areas just are not as profitable as larger cities. So trying to get the phone company to do something is falling on deaf ears. Plus technically Windstream Communications is in bankruptcy. So getting to make a capital outlay to replace my phone line is not going to happen any time soon.

As I said in an earlier post the contracts for all these communications companies give them all the rights and you are just left paying the bill and take what they give. So basically its take it or leave it. In my case leaving it only inconveniences me.

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Yeah, I really wish that the telecommunications bills had included a rural internet initiative along the lines of the old electric co-operative funding which enabled the electrification of the U.S. at the turn of the previous century.

Interestingly, in many areas it was private individuals paying to run power lines which accomplished this though — an uncle of mine, at his wife’s behest paid to run a power line up to their mountaintop home — immediately after, pretty much every lot for sale on the mountain sold and they had neighbors, which they’d never had before, and which he always regretted (declared, “Should’ve saved twice, bought all those lots first, then put in the electric.”

I use 4GAS.
I usually have close to 25Mbps down, which is fast enough for TV, chromebooks, and online homeschool all at once. I’ve had them for right at 2 years now. I had trouble about 1 year ago, and they replaced my modem for free. Once in awhile, I have to reboot my modem, but who doesn’t.
I’m in the country, where I can’t get any kind of wired internet, but close enough to cell towers for this.

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I use broadbandQ wireless, looks very similar to the 4GAS. Utilizes cell tower 4GLTE. I get close to 15Mbps and I am in a fairly rural location.

Curious, what does the 4GAS plan cost? Mine is right around 100 per month with a “data cap” that I have never hit because streaming is included.


Mine is $80 per month. Same deal. There is a data cap that never comes into effect.

Thanks to those that replied. I went to AT&T in Lufkin Texas to inquire about their rural internet service. They knew about the program and had me type in my address and it is not available.

I did look at the 4GAS and that seems promising but since they are using the local cell towers it would likely have the same problems I already have. Verizon and AT&T just have low signal and low signal quality.

So it may be my only option to get HughesNet and/or Viasat/Exceede for $150.00 a month.

I have one more option for my Cell Antenna and Verizon amplifier. I bought an antenna mast about a year ago and have not put it up. I may try to get that mounted and the antenna put up higher to see if I can get a better Verizon signal.

I currently use an over the air TV antenna for television and want to get high speed internet so I can stream TV and use it for internet. I dont want to pay for internet and satellite TV both that would likely be $250.00 a month combined. I am cheap at heart and already pay $67.00 monthly to Verizon for “Unlimited Data, Phone and Text”. But as I said earlier they give you a drinking straw that is so small you can only get a few drops at a time, but it is unlimited. So much for unlimited if you can only get .1MBPS. Sometimes I monitor in Windows 10 the performance and it occasionally bursts all the way up to 1.1 MBPS. Wow I am under whelmed.

So my last ditch effort is to raise my antenna up to see if I can get better speed and if that fails I will have to bite the bullet and pay $150.00 a month for satellite internet or continue to limp along as I have.

Thanks to all that replied