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satellite modems - starband sucks!

paul wheaton

Joined: Dec 14, 1998
Posts: 20972

I feel it is my duty to warn you all about satellite modems. Actually, I am so angry about this product today, I think that this may be the best way to vent.
Years ago, word on the street was that they sucked. But I read some editorials saying that they are now better. They are now two-way and they are much faster and have dramatically reduced the latency. The reviews have been that they are far superior to dial-up.
Exaggerations and lies.
Dial-up is still superior.
Here are the problems:
1) It is picky about when it works. Bad weather, dawn and dusk are issues. Their equipment goes down regularly.
2) When their stuff does not work for whatever reason and you need to get onto the internet, you use dial-up. Only when you try to use dial-up, starband keeps popping up windows saying something about how you have activated the starband installation process.
3) The starband modem will work as a stand-alone device, but then it is about four to twenty times slower than a dial-up modem. You have to use their windows drivers which must have some sort of compression stuff in it. BUT! This software is horribly invasive. And once you have it in, you cannot use any other network stuff. At one point, it had my windows 2000 stuff so screwed up, I had to re-install the o/s.
4) As a solution to having the starband stuff screw up my laptop, I thought I would dedicate a windows 2000 desktop computer to doing the starband stuff. I would then have that computer act as a gateway to the laptop. Slow as molasses again.
I paid $800 for installation, and another $100 to re-install because the first installation crashed. And then I have to pay $70 per month for twelve months.
The moment my contract is over, I'm going back to dial-up. In fact, I'm going to get a second phone line put in now and use that instead of starband - even though I have to continue to pay for starband.

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Dave Vick
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 10, 2001
Posts: 3244
I just noticed this post of yours. Sorry to hear about the probelsm you've been having.
Do they know who you are and what site you run? Have you pointed them to this topic so they can see what kind of damage you can do to them?
If you do they might offer you some way out of the contract or try a little harder to fix your problems It cant hurt - $70.00/month is pretty steep for something that doesn't work, I'd be pissed.
Randall Twede
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 21, 2000
Posts: 4351

sounds to me like they arent providing what they promised which would make the contract invalid. they broke it. they were supposed to provide one thing and gave you something else. you should be able to get out of it. especially if it doesnt run right causing problems with the OS. there is something in law about a product has to work right.
[ April 06, 2002: Message edited by: Randall Twede ]

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shailesh sonavadekar
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 1874
i remember paul mentioning the great features of satellite modem last year , especially download speeds & its comparision with installation cost of telephone.
so , still legacy is winning over innovation ? what about cable modems & broadband ? how is their performance ? how about fibre?
[ April 07, 2002: Message edited by: shailesh sonavadekar ]
Marilyn de Queiroz

Joined: Jul 22, 2000
Posts: 9059
Cable modem and broadband are not available in that area.

"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today is a gift; that's why they call it the present." Eleanor Roosevelt

Joined: Jul 20, 2002
Posts: 1
Yes, Starband sucks, I will have my year over on aug 7 and I cannot wait. I have the latest and greatest they have and after the $800 for the equipment and install the installer crashed 3 computers and then they were nasty about it, I even had to mount my own pole for the dish and ended up loading the software myself and making it run. Then I found out the dial up was 100 % faster and when I tried to cancel they advised me it was $499 to do it before the year. Their installers, tech support and all personnel are absolutely not even qualified to work at a fast food restaurant. I am also getting a new dial up dedicated phone line and will float test the starband equipment in the lake and see if it floats, GOOD RIDDANCE Starband and I hope you do go out of business. Starband Sucks.
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