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Satellite Internet access dishes vary in size and strength. Sizes ranging from roughly half a meter to roughly three meters are readily available. Obviously the smaller the dish, the more mobile it potentially is, so the mobile units tend to be on the smaller end of the scale. Equally obviously the bigger the dish, the better it'll be at receiving signals. Thus the person wishing to take advantage of satellite Internet service has to make a tradeoff between size and power.
Satellite Internet access is not currently available throughout the entire world. Furthermore, even in places where it is available, the quality and the bandwidth will vary. You'll also find that different Satellite ISPs provide access in different areas (this can be important if you're looking for mobile access). While most of the world has some satellite Internet service available, expect big differences from place to place and provider to provider. The important thing is to check the details before signing any service contracts.
Satellite Internet service is pretty specialized. Most of the ISPs that offer satellite Internet connections focus strictly on that feature. Likewise, most of the big national ISPs do not offer satellite Internet access. If you need a satellite Internet connection, first make a list of satellite ISPs that offer ISP services in your area. Once you have that list, then work your way down based upon ISP services offered. You may find that they don't all offer the services you require. Finally check user testimonials and price.
Satellite Internet access has the deserved reputation for being expensive. Expect high monthly fees that'll vary with your location and satellite ISP. Expect high set-up costs that will vary with your selected dish and equipment. Expect various tariffs that will vary with your location, provider, and desired use. You may find that using the satellite Internet connection for Web browsing costs a different amount than using it for e-mail or FTP. You may also find that your satellite ISP has special rules for VoIP usage.
Usually satellite access is so expensive that it is only considered as a last resort. For some people the only option for high-speed Internet access is via satellite. Obviously, there are cases where a house or business is in an area without cable and is simply too far away from a telephone company to make DSL an option, but still needs high-speed Internet access. Perhaps less obviously is the case of a truck driver or mariner who wants Internet access from his or her vehicle. For both the remote and the mobile, satellite Internet service is the solution.
It is possible to connect to the Internet via satellite. It offers surprisingly fast speeds, comparable to cable or DSL. It tends to have much slower uploading speed than downloading, though. It is also quite expensive and requires special equipment including a satellite dish. In some parts of the world though it is the only option for high-speed Internet access.
Few things are as exciting to the true Internet junkie as the idea of mobile high-speed Internet access. Unfortunately the truth (at this point in time) may not live up to expectations. Mobile satellite Internet access is available for vehicles, but it generally requires that the vehicle be stationary before the satellite Internet connection is made. The basic procedure is that you go where ever you're going, and then set up your dish and connect to the Internet. The dish is also a pretty good size. Thus if you're considering it for your car, you may find it impractical. If you live in a camper for months out of the year and move from place to place, though, it's a different story.