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Important Mobile Satellite Internet Service Numbers to Know

A leading mobile satellite internet service provider might offer a variety of service levels, some of which you don’t know about. If your current option or frontrunner in the selection process offers a single rate, beware. Satellite internet is almost always more complicated. It’s always better to go with a company that fully discloses certain information so you can plan your operations and continuity strategies based on hard data. Here are some of the metrics to pin down. Understand these concepts to choose the best mobile satellite internet service.

Transfer Rate

Transfer rates are one of the most recognizable figures in terms of internet services, and they’re written the same way nearly all uplink methods: fiber-optic, satellite, wifi and so on. Here’s a refresher in case you’re not completely familiar with this measurement. There are generally two different speeds, one for uploading and one for downloading. Expect a lower upload number. Most quality satellite services have maximum information rates that range from 768-kilobyte to 4-megabyte per second downloads. A one-hour video call might use around 700 megabytes, or around 200 kilobytes per second.

Contention Ratio

As you might expect, transfer rate is just part of the deal. It’s extraordinarily expensive to get transfer time on internet satellites, so each information pathway is usually shared. The mobile satellite internet service provider discloses the extent to which any given path is shared in a figure called contention ratio. You’ll see it in a traditional ratio form. Look for numbers below 50:1, and you should be getting the most out of your service. This is one of the most reliable indicators of the quality of your connection, so more expensive plans tend to have lower numbers in their contention ratios.


It’s not necessarily a technical specification, but the cost of the service is an important number. Satellite service can easily cost over $4,000 a month. Those higher-priced options are most attractive to remote operations, such as military installations, oil platforms or research vessels. An individual internet user or travelling business team could conceivably operate with full communications continuity for under $1,000 per month. Heavy video or photo transfer activity might require higher speeds, so make sure to communicate your needs and expectations to the sales team at your internet provider.

Contention, plan prices and transfer rates all change the nature of your communications strategy. Choose wisely to allow your team can do what they do best: deliver reliable results. Sometimes it’s best to have an example, so check out this mobile satellite internet service provider to get an idea of the range of service levels available.

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