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Satellite VS DSL Internet Comparison

Internet services are essential and people in the US usually have access to better options such as fiber or cable internet.

But for those living in rural areas, the decision usually comes down to choosing between a DSL and a Satellite internet connection.

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Although both are not bad, they have their pros and cons. And that is why it becomes difficult for people to choose between these two.

So in this guide, we are going to compare both of these internet connections and see which one is the best. But before that, let’s have a quick look at what these connections are.

What is Satellite Internet?

While most of the internet connections use wired networks to offer services to customers, satellite internet uses satellites and dish antennas to do the same. That is why it is available even at the remotest locations.

What is DSL Internet?

DSL internet connection uses phone lines to deliver internet services to customers. Though it’s an old technology that was introduced as a successor to dial-up connections, it still offers good speed. 

This connection type is common in rural areas and is still used by millions.

Satellite VS DSL – Which one is better?

DSL internet is generally considered better than satellite internet because the services are offered via a wired network. But the choice between these two depends upon your situation and preferences. 

To compare both of these, we will consider factors such as availability, reliability, speed, price, and data amount/ data cap. So without further ado, let’s get to it.

  • Speed

A satellite internet connection typically offers a download speed of up to 25 Mbps. For instance, HughesNet internet, which is America’s top satellite internet choice offers this speed. Though there are speed options of up to 100 Mbps offered by Viasat, but that is rarely available. 

On the other hand, a DSL internet connection can offer a download speed of up to 100 Mbps. But the situation is similar here as this speed is also not available everywhere. Typically, a DSL connection offers a download speed ranging from 5-15 Mbps in most of the areas.

So in this regard, you will have to look at what is being offered in your area. If there is a better speed with DSL, go for it. Otherwise, the satellite would be the one that will take care of your needs.

  • Availability
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Between satellite and DSL internet, the first thing that we are going to look at is availability.

DSL internet uses phone lines, which means that the areas with active phone lines can get DSL internet services. In some cases, even if there are phone lines but the house is located far from the network center of the service provider, you probably will not be able to get DSL internet. 

On the other hand, satellite internet is available almost everywhere. The basic benchmark for that is as long as there is a clear view of the southern sky, you can get satellite internet service. For those customers who are located far from the central offices of DSL companies, their only option for internet services would be the satellite. 

So, if availability is a major concern for you, a satellite connection is the best option compared to DSL.

  • Reliability

If we talk about reliability, DSL offers services using phone lines. That means the internet is always on unless the wires get damaged or there is some outage issue. In comparison to that, the reliability of satellite internet greatly depends upon your location.

If your house is surrounded by trees, buildings, or mountains, or the weather is not clear most of the time, the signal strength would be weak. If that is not the case, you will be able to get good signals and the connection would be reliable.

  • Price

If we look at the prices, DSL is the one that is more economical as the DSL internet prices are mostly around $50 per month or less. However, the satellite internet pricing depends upon the amount of data that you are getting. If you opt for a basic data plan, it might cost you around $50-$60 per month. Otherwise, the price will be higher than this.

Resultantly, DSL is a better choice if you are concerned about pricing and want to keep things in your budget.

  • Amount of Data

In this comparison of satellite and DSL internet connection, the last thing we are going to look at is the amount of data offered.

Satellite internet plans usually offer a soft data cap. That means when customers run out of the given data, their internet speed is managed as per the company’s fair usage policy. However, they are not charged any extra amount.

Contrarily, DSL offers 1 TB of data which is normally more than enough for streaming and downloading. If customers go over that data limit, they are charged extra for the additional data.

Final Verdict

If you are living in a remote area and availability is your biggest concern, satellite internet is the option to consider because that is available almost everywhere. Contrarily, if you are worried about data, the DSL connection would be the one that will work for you as the amount of data offered with DSL is much better.

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