Talk:Satellite Internet access

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Needs more detail[edit]

The page needs to include definition / links on latency and round-trip delays. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 14:58, July 5, 2005

The page also needs to be qualified as 'home' or 'consumer grade' satellite internet access. There are many definitive and interesting applications of modem and modulation technologies that apply to professional or government 'ad hoc' networks that are not currently used in commercial systems marketed to the public for a variety of practical reasons. This page refers mainly to consumer systems, and ignores significant advances using broadcast and military grade equipment.

A statement should be made at the top to redirect to more relevant information if 'non-consumer grade' internet is being researched. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cborgcbtv (talkcontribs) 03:45, 15 August 2016 (UTC)


Much of the information presented about satellite ground station and antenna architecture is inaccurate. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 06:02, November 22, 2005‎

10 years after it's still very bad. For example, in the Gateways section, it's written: "Once the initial request has been processed by the gateway’s servers, sent to and returned from the Internet, the requested information is sent back as a forward or downstream payload to the end-user via the satellite, which directs the signal to the subscriber terminal"... It's not clear, like a marketer's one-liner as this sentence could sound like the VSAT transceiver is directly receiving its data from the satellite... There's simply no such thing as "via the satellite" for end-users, everything goes through the Gateways. --HawkFest (talk) 14:59, 7 June 2016 (UTC)


I put a picture of the Wild Blue dish that we have installed on our home up on the article. One of these days if I remember I'll take a picture of the satellite modem and put it up on this article too.
JesseG 21:26, 2 January 2006 (UTC)

Bad structure[edit]

The structure of this page is horrible, with redundant information and forward references all over the place. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 23:24, September 16, 2006‎


There's no mention here of the WINDS satellite. I'm wondering how that satellite works... I noticed it's got a geosynchronous orbit... so it would pass the same spot in the sky every certain time (in this case 24 hours). How are people on the ground supposed to communicate with it?. And will it later on be a web of satellites so that there's always one up?. — Preceding unsigned comment added by User:JunCTionS (talkcontribs) 19:52, February 21, 2008‎

(This is a misunderstanding of geosynchronous orbit. Geosynchronous orbit means that the satellite stays in the same place over the Earth, because it's orbit is synchronous with the Earth's rotation. Both rotate every 24 hours, so the effect as seen from the ground is that the satellite never moves. Thus it's very easy for people on the Earth to point a dish at it and communicate with it. It's why geosynchrous satellites are generally preferred over lower orbit satellites.) (talk) 22:56, December 2, 2009‎ - Dave Berg)
I tried to give some mention of the satellite in the Satellites launched section. I also referenced it to the other "WINDS" Wikipedia article. -- (blantond) 15:07, December 2, 2011‎
Expanded on the section some with the launch of the WINDS satellite. (blantond) —Preceding undated comment added 21:08, 2 December 2011 (UTC).


It needs to include information about iPSTAR, listed elsewhere in Wikipedia, the worlds first pure IP satellite, and most efficient —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:53, 5 October 2007 (UTC)

Is reducing latency section nearly all OR?[edit]

The reducing latency section appears to be one person's original research. Caching is impractical for a huge range of uses. It all depends on the usage pattern of the users. This section reads to me like "Look everyone, I've solved this huge problem so simply, why haven't the experts realized how simple it is and fixed it? Hmmm, maybe because they just aren't as smart as me! Next on my to do list: the problems of famine, war, and republicans..." Saying adding a robust and well-designed cache to a satellite is practical is rather silly: anything in a satellite had better be robust and well-designed. I assume the editor means well-designed in terms of what it caches: doing that alone would, I assume, be impractical because the algorithm which determined what to cache would have an impossible task due to the range of information required. Of course, I know next to nothing about this topic, so I didn't remove the text, just cleaned it up and flagged it. I suspect, however, that the editor who added it knew no more than I, hence the overreaching claims of practicality. --Fitzhugh 18:00, 4 December 2007 (UTC)

After cost, this is the most important question in the minds of most readers: Is satellite going to have unacceptable latency for my application? Definitely the section on "reducing latency" is garbage simply because you don't reduce the latency, you compensate for it. Cacheing is another whole topic that should be linked to but it must be made clear that no interactive application can benefit from it. Presently the introductory section focuses on the problems of high latency and only claims "geostationary" systems are useless for these. Perhaps we can debate the adjectives used, and find the most credible citations (the research is in MIT, SIGCHI and other credible sources, relatively easy to find, no "OR"). We may also need a new article "latency effect on online applications" or something because geostationary satellite is not the only high-latency connection out there. Anyone ever try to "tether" a "smartphone" via a nonstandard USB connection? Most of these things have no Ethernet ports leaving you relying on proprietary drivers and very flaky proprietary ware. Tethering an iPhone to OS/X can yield latencies that vary wildly from 600 to 6000 ms! Windows XP Pro does somewhat better in my experience, more like 230 to 900ms, but it is still not usable for anything interactive.

Geostationary useless for low-latency applications

This inherent latency makes Satellite Internet service essentially unusable for applications requiring real-time user input, such as online games or remote surgery. This delay can also be irritating and debilitating with interactive applications, such as VoIP, videoconferencing, or other person to person communication. It will cause most general market applications (such as Skype) to behave unpredictably and fail, as these are not designed for the difficult compensation for the high latency connections. As research has repeatedly demonstrated that perceived delays in answering questions subconsciously suggests doubt to the listener and can generate mistrust even when both sides are aware of the lag [citation needed] , geostationary connections are best avoided for important voice calls. Other research into interactive systems has repeatedly demonstrated that latency lag is the most debilitating and irritating of all interactive system flaws and often gives an extremely negative impression of the system or its usefulness. Some researchers have gone so far as to recommend simply refusing connections to those with latency likely to result in poor interactive user experience. [citation needed]

The functionality of live interactive access to a distant computer can also be subject to the problems caused by high latency. However these problems are more than tolerable for basic email access and web browsing, and in most cases are barely noticeable.[citation needed] This is not true, however, for character-by-character command shell or virtual private networks (which typically involve several round trips using layered protocols) which are almost universally unusable through geostationary connections. Typical VPN connections made over satellite will be at least double (and often, with poor protocols and misguided security measures) quadruple or worse the underlying basic latency. [citation needed]. Unless the VPN is literally re-engineered to accommodate high-latency users, it will be useless for anything but email, download and a static web.

— Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 11:25, October 28, 2010‎

alternatives to increasing performance without actually reducing latency[edit]

With regard to reducing latency, there are a number of mechanisms available for reducing the *effects* of latency on Internet protocols such as TCP. These mechanisms don't reduce the actual physical latency but mitigate the problems caused by the huge latency incurred in satellite links. The most important references I have found on this topic are:

  • IETF RFC 2488 - Enhancing TCP Over Satellite Channels using Standard Mechanisms
  • IETF RFC 3135 - Performance Enhancing Proxies Intended to Mitigate Link-Related Degradations

Performance Enhancing Proxies (PEP) seem to be well-supported. Cisco routers support this in their IOS software as of version 12.3T, it is called "Rate Based Satellite Control Protocol". The PEP technique is also referred to as "TCP spoofing" since it involves the injection of TCP ACKs to convince the sender that it should keep sending data. IETF RFC 2488 mostly writes about adding additional features to the TCP -- e.g. additions to the Congestion Control Algorithm to implement Fast Retransmit and Fast Recovery...or the addition of large windows, window scaling, the Selective Acknowledgement (SACK) option, etc. More of the gory details about these extensions can be found in IETF RFC 1323 (TCP Extensions for High Performance) and IETF RFC 2001 (TCP Slow Start, Congestion Avoidance, Fast Retransmit, and Fast Recovery Algorithms). ChrisTracy (talk) 01:27, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

Definitely these should be mentioned but make sure to link every single IETF standard and technical acronym (to the actual term you mean, not just "IOS" or "SACK". — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 11:25, October 28, 2010‎

Need privacy section for the article[edit]

It looks like en masse" satellite downbeams do not encrypt the material, so that only the requesting individual could access the content of the received package. Therefore downloading a family video via satellite could expose the toddler to kidnappers or a teenage girl to online perverts, etc. This looks like even nastier than cable TV net, where whole condos sometime share the same circuit and you can sniff the neighbours's traffic. (talk) 10:46, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

Yes, and bringing family photos to a public place to print them exposes everyone visible to kidnappers and perverts who work for Wal-Mart. This is not worth space in this article. However, a table of encryption and privacy polices would be helpful so people could see which providers took *any* measures to protect their browsing or not. In condos who cares what porn your neighbors watch, you can hear them through the walls anyway. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 11:25, October 28, 2010‎

"Satellites launched" section is too restricted[edit]

It only mentions a few, i can't believe those are the only ones up there... --TiagoTiago (talk) 15:33, 7 November 2011 (UTC)

More neutrality on GEO vs MEO needed[edit]

I do not understand why the use of GEO satellites for internet connectivity is so much negatively depicted throughout this whole article.

It seems as if it is written by somebody who has business interest in MEO of LEO has been editing this article. The majority of all internet links over satellite for IP trunking, backbone and internet access are over GEO satellites, and I know from my personal experience that VoIP, Skype, etc... works without problematic delay. However, real time games, remote surgery, etc... who are very time critical do not work well over satellite, which is common knowledge.

Overall I think this article is pretty negative towards GEO, and pretty positive for MEO/LEO. I would suggest to make the article more neutral towards GEO, and add the negative aspects of MEO/LEO as well (higher costs because of tracking antenna's, less obvious to be used for VSAT consumer type of internet access, etc...) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:28, 13 December 2011 (UTC)

List of companies that offer satellite internet access to consumers[edit]

I was looking for a list of companies that offer satellite internet access to consumers. I expected to find it here. I didn't. At least it could have pointed me to such a list somewhere else. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:36, 17 October 2012 (UTC)

Trackers and self-orienting systems[edit]

Self orienting systems ie include the Oyster CI Skew Internet (3500 €), these are hence much more costly than non-self orienting systems (about 500 €) Tracking systems (allowing continuous orientation, ie for use on ships) also exist but are rare and very expensive. include in article — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 06:12, December 6, 2012

User:Talex101 -- paid editor for satellite industry?[edit]

On September 4, 2012, User:Talex101 changed their talk page to show:

+ Alex Miller is a content writer for ViaSat Inc. in Englewood, Colorado.

This has been removed from the latest version of their user page.

It looks like this user is trying to remove any article content that may cast satellite internet services in a bad light, such as anything that suggests the service can be slow or high latency. The editor apparently doesn't care if the article material is cited or is now historical... the content is deleted without discussion. DMahalko (talk) 02:43, 1 February 2013 (UTC)

Just trying to get relevant, accurate and fresh information on this page. Any guidance on how to do it properly welcome Talex101 (talk) 21:07, 4 February 2013 (UTC)Alex Miller
The geostationary latency issues are not obsolete or irrelevant. The latency of geostationary cannot be eliminated.
Maybe the latency can be brought below the 1000 to 1500 milliseconds some people have regularly experienced with WildBlue and others, but less than 480 msec (citing RFC 2488) for bidirectional geostationary satellite Internet is physically impossible due to the speed of light.
-- DMahalko (talk) 23:03, 4 February 2013 (UTC)
Also, if receive-only satellite internet is obsolete as you say, then label the section as historical but leave it in the article. It would be useful to cite which companies once offered it, and when the service was phased out.
Wikipedia does not delete article content for obsolete technologies. Vacuum tube, Linotype, Punched card, Buggy whip
-- DMahalko (talk) 00:06, 5 February 2013 (UTC)

Planned LEO constellations[edit]

Is this article stuck in 2010? SpaceX, Boeing (with Apple?), OneWeb, maybe some others. The article talks so much about light-speed delays for high orbits, but doesn't cover recent LEO plans at all. --mfb (talk) 01:57, 4 May 2017 (UTC)

I added a small section in the history section, but the article structure makes it challenging to edit it consistently. --mfb (talk) 22:45, 13 May 2017 (UTC)

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