How Does Satellite Internet Work?

In areas poorly served by ADSL and technologies allowing access to very high speed, the Internet by satellite can be a very interesting alternative. Operation, cost, installation and specificities, We explain everything you need to know!

What is the meaning of satellite internet?

As its name indicates, this technology allows you to take advantage of a connection via satellites. It is a serious alternative for homes, generally rural, whose terrestrial connection is poor. A well oriented satellite dish, connected to a modem, is enough to take advantage of speeds up to 22 Mbps in reception and up to 6 Mbps in transmission.

Residents of rural areas can also opt for home telephony to enjoy a good network quality at home. The fixed telephone service guarantees a good connection, efficient communication and guaranteed security.

Related post: Threats related to public WI-FI networks

Why choosing satellite internet?

If your home is located in an area poorly served by ADSL, this technology is a good alternative. You can enjoy a broadband connection by satellite at home. Satellite internet reception is available everywhere and offers a high average internet speed.

Note that the installation kit to receive internet by satellite is not free. It costs an average of $300 for the equipment and its installation. Nevertheless, some local authorities can provide subsidies to facilitate its installation. Moreover, the State has set up a digital cohesion of the territories allowing to obtain a financial support up to $150 according to the commune of residence.

How does internet by satellite work?

To take advantage of the connection via this technology, you will need three pieces of equipment

  • A satellite antenna.
  • A transmitter/receiver placed on the satellite dish.
  • A modem.

Then, you can call a professional to do the installation in the best conditions.

How to Install Internet satellite at home?

When subscribing to a satellite Internet offer, the most delicate step is of course to install the dish and to unroll the coaxial cable to the modem. The dish, once assembled, must be fixed on a mast and face an area clear of any obstacle (vegetation, roofs…) in the direction of its satellite. Note that its diameter and exact references may vary depending on the satellite to be contacted.

The correct operation of the dish requires the accurate calculation of its elevation, i.e. its orientation on a vertical axis, and its azimuth, i.e. its horizontal orientation. To facilitate the task, many kits are provided with a “beeper” type device that will automatically adjust the dish to the satellite signal. In any case, it is still possible and even recommended to call on a professional installer to guarantee optimal reception quality.

Pros and cons of satellite internet:


Satellite internet has the advantage of being available everywhere with a stable and efficient flow:

  • It allows to obtain speeds equivalent to ADSL.
  • The installation is simple and fast. It does not require any connection to the telephone line.
  • The technology offers satisfactory speeds for long distances and guarantees the security of data and equipment.
  • Subscribers benefit from a reliable connection thanks to the absence of intermediaries.
  • They can use the satellite dish dedicated to the Internet to receive TV channels broadcasted on the same satellites.


  • The latency time is very important (about 650 milliseconds). It is almost 10 times longer than the ping of a terrestrial connection.
  • Subscribers who consume a lot of data can weaken the signal of others, because the tube will be saturated.
  • The cost of the technology is high for intensive use. It is two or three times more than ADSL.

Which operator to choose for your internet subscription ?

There are many satellite Internet offers on the market. They include various options that must be taken into account before making a purchase:

  • Transfer and Download speed.
  • Commitment duration.
  • Services included in the package.
  • Termination fees.
  • Equipment price

To choose your internet satellite package, we advise you to use an online comparator to compare the offers as well as the services included in the different subscriptions (types of internet packages, unlimited local calls, three-way calls, call transfers, number of TV channels, etc.).

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