If you have been using the internet since the 90s, you would be familiar with the concept of satellite internet. While it is nothing new, this form of wireless networking technology has gained power since Elon Musk (Starlink) and Amazon (Project Kuiper) decided to expand its availability and enhance its utilities.

Satellite internet, although not as fast as cable or fiber internet, is accessible in all fifty US states making it the most convenient means of connectivity. Here is everything that you need to know about the question ‘what is satellite internet and how does it work’ to make up your mind regarding the service.

What is Satellite Internet?

Satellite internet is a wireless internet connection, in which a stream of signals radiates from the satellites orbiting around the Earth and reaches a subscriber’s house. Completely different from cable and DSL connections that transmit internet packets through copper wires, satellite internet has global coverage and can be taken anywhere, as it is location-independent.

For people living in rural areas or regions where terrestrial internet is unavailable, satellite internet is nothing short of a blessing. Although it has some great specifications, it comes with a few shortcomings, as well.

How Does Satellite Internet Work?

This section covers the most awaited explanation of this blog post: How do satellites work and transmit data all over the planet?

Like satellite TV, satellite internet involves the seamless communication of three satellite dishes i.e. the one deployed in space, the one at the ISP’s hub, and the third one at your place. While satellite internet does not care for any cable wires or phone lines, it does require electrical connectivity.

Satellite internet uses radio waves to get in touch with the satellites orbiting around the Earth. Your device sends out data signals through a modem or dish to the satellite deployed in space, which then transmits it back to the Earth to NOCs (Network Operations Centers), who in turn beam the data back to space and then to your satellite dish, and subsequently to your device. This cycle goes on indefinitely as long as you have the service installed at home.

For more clarity, the relay system used by satellite internet is discussed here:

Internet-Associated Device

Any device that can connect to and access the internet is an internet-associated device. This can be your smartphone, tablet, smart TV, computer, gaming console, etc.

When the internet is used on any such device, your data is sent and received through an internet modem or router.

Modem/Router

A modem device encodes your data in order for it to move between the satellite dish and your internet-associated device. Using an Ethernet cable, you can connect your device to the modem directly.

However, if you want a clean and wireless connection, you can use the Wi-Fi capacity of your internet-associated devices like smartphones. For this, you would need a router so it can broadcast data wirelessly on your device.

Satellite Dish

A satellite dish plays a critical role in the satellite internet relay system. This dish needs to be positioned correctly to send and receive data signals to and from the satellite in the Earth’s orbit.

Satellite in Space

Approximately 22,000 miles above the equator, satellites (deployed by the satellite internet service) orbit around the Earth. Their rotation is in alignment with the planet so that the signal relay can be maintained. This is also known as geostationary orbit and allows two-way communication between NOC and your dish.

NOC (Network Operations Center)

The moment you request any sort of information from the internet, for instance, video streaming, this request is processed through the above system, reaching the satellite and then, the NOC.

NOC uses a high-magnitude satellite dish to gather the information you require and sends it to you through the relay system. The entire system takes less than a second and so you do not realize the science behind it.

Wrapping Up

While other means of the internet are much faster than satellite internet, the argument that satellite covers more ground is one of the biggest reasons for its constant utility, even in the digital age. To get your hands on the best satellite internet, contact our customer service unit at 1-844-763-0449.


Frequently Asked Questions

How fast is the satellite internet connection?

Satellite internet might not be as fast as cable, DSL, or fiber connections. The speed range varies from 12 to 100 Mbps (enough for general internet surfing, emailing, remote work, and even light video streaming).

Is satellite internet reliable?

Most times, satellite internet is consistent and reliable. However, storms and heavy rainfall can intercept the signal quality, fading the connection. Nonetheless, as soon as the weather gets stabilized, satellite internet is restored.

Does satellite internet work?

Yes, satellite internet transmits mid-tier speeds to households, whether urban or rural. Though it has an elaborate behind-the-curtain mechanism, this connection type provides a fast and reliable connectivity.