"HughesNet is Absolutely, Without A Doubt, The Worst Company I Have Ever Had The Misfortune of Relying On"

Reader Jeff isn’t pleased with HughesNet and has cc’d us on his email so that we can listen in. It’s more of a warning than a specific complaint that can be resolved:

I would just like to take this opportunity to reiterate, for the hundredth time, how much I loathe HughesNet. I have just been FAPed again. No one here is downloading any movies, music, books, or much of anything — just using the Internet. I have a guest visiting, and I’m assuming their additional drain on the ridiculously small 375 MB cap we’re afforded is what’s knocked us over the limit…so now I’m stuck at sub-dialup speeds for the next 24 hours.

But even if we were downloading movies, music, or books — so what? That’s my prerogative as a customer of your hideously overpriced, unreliable service. I pay the bill, I should get to decide what to use the service for. As long as I’m not doing anything illegal, how I use HughesNet’s service should be up to me — particularly since I work from home, and depend on that service in order to make money to feed my family.

Does HughesNet care? No. HughesNet knows that 95% of its customers have no broadband alternative, so they overcharge, and supply negligent (at best) customer service. Here’s a terrific example: During the installation that I paid $600 for, HughesNet’s technician came out to my two-story home and bolted an enormous dish to the roof, angled perfectly to collect snow during the winter months. Does HughesNet give the option of bagging the dish to prevent signal disruption after snowstorms? Does HughesNet give the option of spraying the dish to aid in keeping snow off? Of course not. HughesNet offers to charge me $140 for a service call to clean the dish.

Upload speeds are abysmal — and what’s worse, uploads are consistently disrupted and truncated. What is HughesNet’s solution? To offer me a new, supposedly faster modem — and charge me for the modem, plus shipping, plus demand a penalty-laden extension of the 18-month agreement I had to sign just to receive service in the first place. No thanks, HughesNet.

HughesNet is absolutely, without a doubt, the worst company I have ever had the misfortune of relying on for an essential service. The way it treats its customers may not be technically criminal, but it should be. I take comfort in knowing that the rapid spread of alternative technologies — such as wi-fi, which should be reaching my corner of New Hampshire this spring — will decimate HughesNet’s customer base, reducing the company to nothing more than a deeply unpleasant memory for its former victims.

I’m cc:ing the office of my Congressman, my Senators, the good people at consumerist.com, and the Better Business Bureau on this e-mail. They may not be able to do anything, but too many of this company’s customers suffer in silence. We need to do a better job of spreading the word that, for most people, having no Internet connection at all is preferable to signing up with HughesNet.

Yours,

Jeff

Yikes.

(Photo:cogdogblog)

Comments

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  1. DJC says:

    Yikes indeed, thats one PO’ed customer.

  2. Tyr_Anasazi says:

    That FAP strikes me as ludicrous–it’s punishing the customers because the company didn’t have the plan in place for improving its infrastructure…

  3. Zagroseckt says:

    wow you got away with only paying 600
    mine ran me a wopping 800
    i’m SO glad i no longer have these boobs

  4. timmus says:

    95% of [HughesNet] customers have no broadband alternative

    Eh? Is WildBlue not available in 95% of the country?

  5. AaronC says:

    Hmm… Will this be what Time Warner see’s in the future?

  6. JustAGuy2 says:

    Jeff chose to live somewhere without other broadband options, which necessitates the use of very expensive satellite capacity to deliver service (his “slice” of the satellite probably costs on the order of $20/month before salaries ground transport, his equipment, etc.). If they didn’t cap usage, it’d either (a) come to a complete stop, as a very small number of users swamp the entire system, (b) have to raise prices incredibly, or (c) go out of business. If he’s writing his congressman to complain about his broadband service and costs, I hope he also includes a demand that we increase his taxes in order to fund my urban rent.

  7. JustAGuy2 says:

    @Tyr_Anasazi:

    It’s not that the company doesn’t have plans in place (listen to their conference calls, they clearly do), but the question is how much to charge for service? Want unlimited access? No problem. You’ll have to pay about $4k/month for every guaranteed 1Mbps of capacity you want, and that’s just for the satellite component.

  8. BrianH says:

    Other than that, sounds like a tight operation :-) <—- for the humor/sarcasm impaired

  9. davebg5 says:

    Seems to me that if one were working from home then they could write-off the cost of their internet connection and get the small office or business level of service, rather than cheap-out and go w/the second least expensive plan, which has a download threshold of less than half a CD of lossless music.

  10. JiminyChristmas says:

    Not to cast aspersions on the technical prowess of the OP, but a couple of thoughts, assuming they really aren’t generating the traffic themselves: 1) If your computer has a virus, worm, or trojan it could be part of a botnet that is running up your numbers. 2) If you have a wireless home network that isn’t secured someone else could be using your connection. My (cheap) router has a built-in IP logging function, so if you have something similar you can easily check for addresses you and your guests aren’t visiting.

    All that said, you can burn through 375mb a lot quicker than you think. Some Flash graphics, a little streaming audio/video, download a few tracks from iTunes, plus 25-50K per page browsing typical news or shopping sites and you’re well on your way.

  11. jrembold says:

    scathing

  12. rhombopteryx says:

    Jeff definitely doesn’t like the cap on his “Pro” service. Why, though, when Jeff subscribed, was he willing to pay more for his “Pro” service than the basic cost of “Home” service? Maybe he wanted the additional speed and/or higher cap that “Pro” provided. Yet Jeff isn’t willing to go the next step for the “ProPlus” or “Small Office” or higher service plans, with their still higher caps?

    Maybe Jeff just wants a good deal more than his wallet is willing to pay for.

    I have that problem too.

    (and I don’t doubt that HughesNet sux, either.)

  13. ornj says:

    Since I live in an urban area I have the pleasure of dealing with Verizon or Comcast (groan) but HughesNet runs commercials on tv constantly. Every time I see that ugly, bubbly woman’s voice I want to throw the remote through the tv. I don’t know why I hate her so much, but I do.

  14. sleze69 says:

    He might want to check and see if he can get 3G coverage in his area. It might be worth dumping Hughesnet and hooking up a 3G modem on his computer and sharing the internet connection for $60 tethered access.

  15. too much fapping gets you fapped out

  16. Snarkysnake says:

    @timmus:

    Is WildBlue not available in 95% of the country?

    I believe that it is…But I would explore every other altenative to them for these reasons :
    (quoted verbatim from the Terms and conditions on their website)

    “Termination Fees. If you cancel the Service before completion of the Minimum Service Term or Extension Term, you will be charged a Termination Fee as follows:

    1. For plans with a 24 Month Minimum Service Term or a Renewal Program Term: Fee is equal to the number of months left in your Minimum Service Term multiplied by $30.00.

    2. For plans with a 12-Month Minimum Service Term: Fee is equal to the number of months left in your Minimum Service Term multiplied by your base monthly fee.”

    Their early termination fee is legal plunder. Also, this little nugget;

    ” Any such controversy or claim shall be settled exclusively by arbitration, and administered by the American Arbitration Association under its Commercial Arbitration Rules. Any such arbitration will be held in Denver, Colorado or the location of the residence where the WildBlue Equipment was installed. The arbitrator will be an expert in the field of Internet services or other appropriate subject matter of the dispute. The arbitrator’s award shall be final and binding and judgment on the award rendered by the arbitrator may be entered in any court having jurisdiction. There shall be no class action arbitration”

    Also, they do not support VOIP…Help me here, does that not mean that you can’t use Skype or Vonage with them ?

    Wireless ISP’s are a cure that is almost worse than the disease…

  17. woodenturkey says:

    well give em a break they are still trying to pay off that big ass plane that howard built and only flew once

  18. friendlynerd says:

    @sleze69:

    I second that…our firm has a Verizon card that works almost anywhere and gets reasonably good speeds with no data cap. Alternately, a Verizon Blackberry can be connected with USB to do the same thing.

  19. peepytweep says:

    @DAVEBG5 Just because an expense can be written off at the end of the year does not make it affordable month to month.

  20. gStein_*|bringing starpipe back|* says:

    i don’t know how some people do this…
    i usually use about a gb or more each day

  21. LorneReams says:

    @JiminyChristmas:
    I use 300mb a month on my PHONE, and that is just the occasional youtube and google search with google maps. I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that I blow through this limit DAILY on my home computer. It is truly a pittance.

  22. gStein_*|bringing starpipe back|* says:

    @structuralpoke: i did a doubletake when i read that he was FAPed

  23. MPHinPgh says:

    @BrianH: :-) <—- for the humor/sarcasm impaired

    Smart move, right there. Some folks ’round these parts might try to take your legs out otherwise.

  24. SinistralEnigma says:

    I appreciate the irony that if you click the link to their FAPping policy, it says under their logo “Broadband Unbound” only a few hundred pixels away from where it tells you the restrictive Threshold (which limits/binds your broadband).

    Tools.

  25. Tankueray says:

    I had satellite internet access, the parent company was HughesNet. It was horrible, the modem only worked half the time, I had to do some serious unauthorized rigging to put a wireless router on it, and it was like $80/month for 256 upload and 512 download. They were coming out with a new modem that worked with linux and routers and they weren’t going to support mine anymore. So it was buy the new equipment, have the dish repositioned, and sign a contract or find something else. I didn’t have a contract with them so I turned it off and got a Cingular/AT&T aircard for my laptop and installed a card in my desktop for it too. It provides me with 2G service consistently. I can VPN into my work computer, watch YouTube videos if I pause them and let them load for 10 minutes. I can even download stuff if I leave the computer on long enough. It took me 10 hours to download an update for my Sirius radio. All and all, it’s just fine for webmail and browsing, which is what it sounds like the OP is doing anyway. It runs about $60/month and I can take my connection anywhere I want. Linksys actually sells a router that you can use with wireless cards, it’s pretty expensive. My only options are satellite, dial-up, and wireless card. But it came with a two year contract. meh. But my mom and grandfather have them as well, they really don’t know what a broadband connection is like (they use AOL), so they are completely happy. It’s faster than dial-up anyway. And when a website gets blocked at work, I just fire up the ol’ Cingular card!

  26. HOP says:

    WOW,HOW COOL IS THAT??????????????

  27. HOP says:

    .

  28. davebg5 says:

    @PEEPYTWEEP While I understand your point, the fact is that this is a normal business expense that should be calculated as part of the monthly budget. If you want to turn your home into a home office, then there are certain expenses that should be expected.

  29. mthrndr says:

    The best way you can complain is with your wallet. He says he can do without it, but seriously, get a Verizon card or something. an “I hate your service, but I’m still going to use it” gets a giant shrug from anyone on their side who bothers to listen.

  30. vdragonmpc says:

    For that cost I would have simply installed a t-1 connection. There are always alternatives. A fractional T wouldnt be that bad nor would ISDN.

    I had a tool of a Operations manager that kept raving that we needed a backup connection in case the cable or DSL went out. He kept pushing for that damned Hughesnet… I hated meetings on disaster recovery with him. We had Business cable, Business DSL and ISDN failover…. WTF did we need a flippin dish on the roof for?

  31. ncf31287 says:

    Oh god, been there done that. Sorry for your misfortune. But do you live in a suburban community? Why didn’t they just mount the dish on a pole standing 6ft high?

    That’s the only way they installed them from where I’m from.

  32. SonicPhoenix says:

    @vdragonmpc:
    I don’t know where you live but to my knowledge, a T1 will cost you between $400-$1200 per month depending on the loop length and how much the LEC decides to charge for the bandwidth. A fractional T is almost always a bad idea because the loop charge is usually half or more of the total bill. So you save about 12% for a 50% reduction in bandwidth.

    If this guy lives far enough out that satellite is his only option then I can just about guarantee that a T1 is going to cost closer to $1200 than it will to $400.

  33. vdragonmpc says:

    We had to deal with that issue years back in an area with no service for a business. They were on a Verizon ISDN (which wasnt bad really) But Covad had a 350-450$ per month T-1 deal.
    If Sat is 800-999 to install and 99 or more per month and my business/life relies on it Im getting a t-1

    As I had to work from home for a couple of years along with my on-site time I got Verizon Business DSL and its been good to me.

  34. theirishscion says:

    @woodenturkey: A strangely ironic comment since the plane in question was nicknamed the Spruce Goose, woodenturkey :-D

  35. AgentMunroe says:

    While HughesNet really is the last resort, I don’t think it’s quite as bad as Jeff makes it out to be. I set up a home network using HughesNet for somebody who needed high-speed in Vermont; the cable line stops about a half-mile from his house, the CO’s too far away for DSL, the cell coverage is terrible due to hills but isn’t 3G anyway, and while this person was of reasonably well means, a T1 was far too prohibitive.

    The thing you have to realize is that the satellite ISPs are sharing an incredibly limited resource; if there wasn’t a FAP, the first person to launch Bittorrent would make life absolutely miserable for everybody else. In order to make sure everybody gets what they’ve paid for, you wind up with something like the FAP. It sucks, but I really don’t think there’s anything they can do. If you want better service, pay more money for a larger cap and more bandwidth.

  36. nekosaur says:

    OK, Jeff.. I do think you might need to calm down a bit. Threatening a company with negative “feedback” to your local congressman, “senators” and the BBB is a bit drastic for a service that (for all practical purposes) is EXACTLY what you signed up for. This article is the kind of nonsense that makes me a bit angry because it is just so overblown to the point of idiocy. I rarely write comments, but feel I do need to offer my opinion on this service for the benefit of the audience at large.

    Believe it or not, I am one of the (apparently few) satisfied customers of HughesNet. When my wife and I were looking for a new home last year, one of my top priorities was speedy internet access. I work for a large (fruit-themed) computer company and need to be online as much as possible. Occasionally I need fairly large files for work, so broadband was something I looked for right away.

    Well, we found the house of our dreams, but it had absolutely NO broadband access whatsoever. Ultimately, I decided that the stability and overall happiness of my family was far more valuable to me than the internet as a tool. (Family and relationship over work should always win, right?)

    Before I signed up for the service, I did a lot of research online and found out about the FAP. I was a bit bummed, but figured that there must be a workaround. Sure enough, there is. On top of that, I KNEW that this policy was in place and STILL ordered the service. At no point do they hide this fact… it’s right out in the open. I personally have the “home” plan with a 375MB FAP cap. This works fine for me. So what about bigger files and downloads?

    If you had actually referenced HughesNet’s website or looked at any posting out there about this, then you would also see that they allow untethered access (ie, download size does not count towards your FAP) between the hours of 3am and 6am. This was done SPECIFICALLY to address the concerns of users that may (from time to time) need access to large files or downloads. It took me all of 30 minutes to find out how to schedule my mac to download certain files, podcasts and updates starting at 3am. It wasn’t that hard. I am sure that Windows can do this as well. I have been using this system for almost a year now with no problems. I download anywhere between 300 and 1GB a night and have not gone over my FAP in months.

    Let’s face the facts here.

    Yes, HughesNet is expensive. You knew that when you gave them your credit card.

    Yes, HughesNet is NOT fast. I get a solid 120KB/s download speed at any point in the day. Is that blazing? No. Is it bearable? Heck yes. It’s actually not all that bad. I am actually amazed that they get the performance that they do… ALL of the internet traffic that they generate from the US goes through TWO pieces of equipment 24/7 that are about the size of a car in FREAKING SPACE. (No local rewires and patches possible here, folks.)

    As far as you referencing them as being “criminal” – well, I think that about sums it up. They can charge $600.00 a month if they want. Isn’t that called “supply and demand?” You signed up for it because you needed their service, didn’t you? They didn’t force you.

    For the record, I had absolutely no issues with the equipment. They came out and installed it for free on a pole outside of my house. I own the equipment – not them. This means I can sell it as well whenever I feel like it. The installer lady was actually pretty smart and nice as well. She was amazed how quickly my Mac picked up the router (just plugged it in to my Airport and chose DHCP. Done.) My dish does get snow from time to time (3 times in over a year to be exact) but it never really lasted very long.

    Would I get a different provider as soon as they came in to town? YES. ONLY because it would save me a ton of money and I would still like to have faster access to the internet. BUT, in no way do I think this company needs to be dogged on so heavily. In my personal experience, they have provided a service that has met and exceeded my expectations. Reporting them to the BBB will truly only get you laughed at. How have they provided a disservice to you? By giving you the level and amount of connectivity you paid for? Have you called them to complain? Have you kept records of outages or overages? Are you working with them at all? I am sure that it is frustrating to you, but please understand that they MUST insist on the FAP in order to keep the satellite alive for the rest of us. We both know someone who downloads torrents 24 hours a day for no other reason than boredom…. they have to protect their service.

    You say that you pay the bill, so you should be able to use the service how YOU want. HUH? No other services provider would agree with you here. They all have caps – sometimes they won’t even tell you what they are *coughComcastcough*. I know – I pay my dish network bill every month so I want all of the channels, damnit! It’s my service! I’m not doing anything illegal like stealing service, so why shouldn’t I be rewarded and get as much as I can? Yeah.

    I am sure that people are going to think that I work for them or something, but I do not. I am not affiliated with them in any way – I just want to share my honest opinion about this company.

    Sorry for the long rant, I just think that this post was unnecessary for the front page of the (usually great) reputation and service that The Consumerist provides to us.

  37. nekosaur says:

    @AgentMunroe: Agreed – Probably could have summed it up my post a lot better like this :)

  38. Jorel says:

    @SonicPhoenix: a full residential T1 costs $159/month and goes out 30,000+ ft from the CO where i’m at. even business class T1′s aren’t much expensive than that.

  39. corthepirate says:

    I used to live out in the boonies in Virginia, and my only options were dial-up or satellite. I got hughesnet and if I watched too many videos on youtube the internet would not work at all for 24 hours. They call it their “Fair Access Policy.” It was the most irritating thing ever.

  40. kbarrett says:

    Dear god … what did you expect?

    You are downloading off a freaking satellite. They can’t just send up another bird into geosynchronus orbit ’cause you can’t get your youtube fast enough ….

    They have to ration what they have among their customers … sending up another bird is a multi-million dollar last resort.

    I would suggest trying the following:
    Get rid of adobe flash, real player, and any other browser “helper apps”. If you want to download and look at a video, budget your bandwidthn for it.

    Get a software firewall, like zone alarm, and disallow any internet access to any software, including your OS, and only punch pinholes through for your browser and email.

    Uncheck autoload images … only look at images you choose to click on … you don’t really want to pay for ad downloads … get aggressive with adblock.

    And if you have wireless, take your wireless router out and shoot it. Replace it with a simple wired router, or just use one PC.

  41. viqas says:

    @friendlynerd: verizon’s unlimited plan is 5 gigs. but still better than 375 megs.

  42. Scuba Steve says:

    Holy crap those thresholds wouldn’t satisfy my grandma, much less my Bittorrent loving Mom or any amount of my Xbox360 using friends.

    I’d say write the FCC and complain, but fat lot of good that would do.

  43. cosby says:

    Hughes net was back a while ago. It was last year or so they cut the download cap from every 4 hours to every 24 hours. Really made it go to shit. Got my last client off it a few months ago when I was able to hit a cell tower with an evdo card. Guy can’t beleive how much better it is. I would personaly take dial-up over hughesnet given the choice. It is that bad.

  44. Chalhubstein says:

    I had this service. They signed me up for an account and misspelled my name. After 25 calls over two weeks trying to get them to cancel the account they finally figured out what was wrong and they referred me to executive customer care. Here is the email. That group of people were both competent and responsive. However, getting to them was an absolute nightmare. I have had more pleasant dental procedures.

    Here is the email

    executivecustomercare@hughes.net

  45. JustAGuy2 says:

    @Scuba Steve:

    Complain about what, exactly? Do you also contact the Department of Transportation to complain that Honda Accords don’t have 500 horsepower?

  46. Scuba Steve says:

    @JustAGuy2 Ok, so maybe the FCC might not be the right organization to call, but someone needs to do something about the horrible state of Broadbrand penetration in the US, and we definitely need to change the 1990 definition of “Broadband” that the cable companies love to throw around.

  47. DoubleEcho says:

    My company uses this service for some of our employees way out who don’t have the option of broadband. Let me tell you, I have yet to hear any one of them sing praises about this service. Hell, dialup is only slightly slower, and would be a better (and cheaper!) alternative.

    The “Angled perfectly to collect snow” part made me chuckle – We had a guy who could watch his dish swing in the wind as it wasn’t bolted on right. It took Hughes a fucking WEEK just to show up because they had him try all of this other B.S., even as he was telling him the dish was swaying in the wind. You’re a satellite company, wouldn’t you realize that it’s not catching a signal if it’s not pointed and locked on in the direction of the satellite?

  48. wendland99 says:

    Sadly many of you are missing the point. Yes Jeff could get the upgraded service plan, yes he could move to another location, blah blah blah….

    For some of us that choose to live in areas outside of the “connected” world we have few options…. Someone mentioned cell service, yeah thanks for the brilliant idea, you don’t think he and many others have tried that? Plus the idea is to have a home network where more than one pc can connect to. Point is you and mnay other missed the point entirely…

    We pay for “broadband” that is so limited that we can barely browse the internet before getting cut off, for 24 hours, that are slower than a 33.6bps modem….its sad. FAP is a bunch of BULLSH*T.

    What is Fair about it? This is just worse than what Comcast is doing to its customers. As the customer we should have the right to do what we want with our service. Many of you criticize the topic when we are paying $80/month for sub-par service anc performance. Whats the point of broadband that has such small limits.

    It feels like you bought a Ferrari with a 1-gallon tank, just when its starts to get fun you are cut off….

  49. JustAGuy2 says:

    @Scuba Steve:

    If you want to spend tax dollars to expand broadband services, that’s a different argument. Personally, I’m opposed to any additional rural subsidies for broadband – living in cities and living in the sticks both have pluses and minuses, and I’m tired of subsidizing people who live in rural areas (universal service fund, for example) when they seem disinclined to subsidize _my_ choice to live in an urban area.

  50. drjayphd says:

    @Gstein: So this image pretty much sums things up?

    [smg.photobucket.com]

  51. FLConsumer says:

    I’m not sure where the original poster’s location is, but I’ve yet to come across an area where I couldn’t at least get cellular data. An EVDO connection is just about as good as a regular broadband connection, just a little more laggy when it comes to latency.

  52. Nashua says:

    This service, if you can even call it that, is quite possibly the worst I’ve ever dealt with. After moving to an area that didn’t offer DSL or Broadband where I lived, I saw the commercial for this on Direct TV. When I called them they told me basically everything that someone wants to hear when trying to make a sale. How “great” the service is, how fast it downloads (1.5mbps down, 280kbps up). Deciding that we needed to have the internet and refusing to go to dial-up, we ordered it. Bad mistake. Didn’t even have it a full 24 hours before the speeds were atrociously slow. I wait to see if its just the satellite still needing to sync up (which the installer told me it would need some time to sync up to get a better connection). I call tech support the next day and she informed me of a fact that was failed to be disclosed, their “Fair Access Policy”. The lady told me that with the plan I had, I could only use 425MB PER DAY of access. I told her that the sales rep did not mention it at all and if I had known that there was going to be a daily limit, especially one that didn’t even equal a full CD’s worth of information, that we would not be having this discussion because I wouldn’t have their product.

    Went to Alltel that day and signed up for their Wireless internet and even though it’s slightly better than dial-up, it’s 1000x better than this rip-off HughesNet offers. They need to do something with making it known on their commercials that restrictions apply (there is no fine print whatsoever on their TV ads)

  53. TexasScout says:

    Even my crapy Wildblue service gives me better than that. They FAP you on a “running 30 day cumulative” (in my case 12 Gb of data) I have busted that twice (pr0n addiction) and it takes about 5 to 7 days of sub dialup speeds to get back to regular (usually about 300 to 500 kb/s on their “up to” 750 kb/s service).

  54. JollyJumjuck says:

    There’s always the option of using the telephone instead of IM, snail mail instead of e-mail, and renting/buying DVD’s/CD’s instead of downloading movies/songs. While Japan is running at 100 Mb/s, parts of New Hampshire appear to be stuck in the early 90′s.

  55. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    @JustAGuy2: If you have a landline phone, you are subsidizing the ‘rural’ areas by paying the phone companies…e.g. Why Caller ID costs $6/month.
    And as far as choosing where to live…I would have to think that ‘availability of broadband’ would place further down on the list than say ‘price’ ‘cost of living’ ‘crime’ ‘climate’ ‘close to work’ etc. Unless you have unlimited funds at your disposal as some whiny posters seem to have.

  56. kc2idf says:

    Okay, I am usually not part of the “blame the customer” crowd, but this one is screaming out.

    Unless you have something that is legitimately forcing you to live in a rural area (such as working in agriculture), then you should consider moving to civilization. If you choose to stay rural for the benefits that you may perceive, then you have to understand that those benefits come at a cost. The lack of a good ISP is one of them. The fact that the ISPs available to you are bandwidth constrained themselves (hence the FAPs) also enters into this formula.

    In short, HughesNet is simply putting an appropriate price on the very difficult task of providing you with internet service.

  57. Laurent Fignewton says:

    @KC2IDF

    Not everyone who lives in rural areas does so by choice; I’m sure we’re all intelligent enough to understand why. I don’t find it unreasonable for ISPs to provide service to rural areas at a comparable rate to what is charged for urban areas with greater infrastructure. Not only for the benefit of people who want to watch videos on Youtube, but also for rural economic development, education, both of which are important enough alone to advocate broadband access, but also access to information by a sector of the American public that’s long been held hostage by the whims of big business.

  58. JustAGuy2 says:

    @thomasrz:

    Sure, it’s a choice to live in rural areas; last I checked, serfdom was abolished quite a while ago.

    I’m sure you do find it reasonable to force ISPs to provide service to rural areas at comparable rates to urban areas, regardless of the cost to provide that service – that would benefit you. It hurts me, though, because I pay higher prices to subsidize you. I choose to live in an urban area – that comes with pluses (like lower cost for broadband provision) and minuses (congestion, higher rent, etc.). As soon as you’re willing to force parking garages in Manhattan to let me park for nothing, as you can in your driveway, I’m happy to force ISPs to provide you discounted broadband.

  59. Mr. Gunn says:

    Wow satellite sucks. I have a larger, cheaper data cap on my phone.

    Can you get cellular service out there? If so, do it, and let all your neighbors know, too.

  60. Mr. Gunn says:

    Oh, yeah, justaguy2 – stop it with the stupid “OHNOES11! TEH SUBSIDIES!!” argument. The fact is, all kinds of things in the US are subsidized, the textbook examples of which are utility provision to rural areas.

  61. dragonsoldier069 says:

    I personally have wildblue and have been a very pleased customer for over a year. I also procured a kyocera 650 card and wifi router as a backup thru alltel. I only pay 75 for sat access and 25 on my exsisiting alltel plan. I live in the country so cable is not option.

  62. JustAGuy2 says:

    @Mr. Gunn:

    Yup, lots of things are subsidized, and it bugs me. I don’t demand that rural folks subsidize my lifestyle, so it annoys me when they demand I subsidize theirs. And yes, I include rural telephony and electrification in that.

  63. hugheshostage says:

    It is being lied to that pisses off most hughes customers. They promise better speeds with an upgrade, but you have to agree to a 15 month or 24 month contract, and the results are nowhere near what they promised.Hughes continues to advertise that They have a fast reliable service. The fact is that recently(several months),they have more customers than available bandwith. Those who were getting what they paid for in the beginning are now starting to see poorer service. Hughes does admit that speeds will be reduced during peak hours. They even go as far as telling you what numbers to expect during peak hours. For my Proplus plan $89 download/upload speeds are up to 1.5mbs/200kbps, but during peak hours hughes claims 700-800kbps/100kbps Well if you read the BBS websites for hughes you’ll see that a lot of people, myself included, get only about half the download and a tenth of the upload of what hughes claims. 100-450/7-20 22 out of 24 hours. With uploads at the reduced speeds I’d be better off with dialup. couple the slow upload with a huge satelite latency and you time out with most games and sending pics to family can take hours. And no you idiot I’m not moving just to get fast internet. Hughes should live up to their promises.

  64. Anonymous says:

    The worst thing about HughesNet is that chirpy woman on the commercials saying “How cool is that?” Usually I am watching a TV show on my PVR or have a few minutes of pause built up so I can avoid hearing that vomit-inducing fake cheerfulness.

  65. Trumps says:

    @JustAGuy2: sorry but WildBlue’s cap is about 10x higher than Hughes Net, and I think about the same price if not a lil cheaper (check for verification)

    BTW WildBlue is available everywhere in the US depending on how your trees look :P

    As far as cleaning the dish….. Its on your house. Put a garbage bag around the dish carefully. Tighten it so that there is no arc for snow to rest between the LNB(tip) and dish. Voila! Youre done.

  66. Anonymous says:

    I feel your pain, my friend! Hughesnet is by far the worst ISP out there, they’re product is horrible, service unacceptable, and the customer service… oh dear, i better not even get started on that. And yes, they overcharge for all of it. They have actually gone as far as TELLING me that my son should not be allowed to play online games using their ISP!?!? What business is it of theirs, I’ m not sure…
    I could go on and on, but I’m saving all that for the hate mail I have started sending them as I’m hoping to cancel soon. I know there’s a fee for terminating my contract early, but I assure you it will be worth every penny. Surely, there has got to be some laws broken by these people! If anyone starts a lawsuit in Ohio, Please contact me!
    Becki

  67. RUKIDDING? says:

    I can say from 3 years experience that Hughes.net is the most DISHONEST company with whom I have ever done business. They make promises they don’t deliver, reduce service without telling you, and knowingly have holes in their bandwidth due to missing satellites but don’t inform their customers – just to name a few lies. And all this because they know that if you live in the backcountry, they have you by the short-and-curlies since you have few, if any, options. You can read plenty of other examples and rants from Consumerist members @ http://consumerist.com/2007/05/well-downgrade-your-bandwidth-82-and-youll-like-it.html.

    As far as the assumption that rural customers are asking to be “subsidized,” that is both presumptuous and political rhetoric. I already gladly pay a tax referred to by my neighbors as the “Colorado Mountain Tax.” It means driving 6 hours and 300 miles to see my doctor or fix my motorcycle, giving up basic city services, or understanding that my house will burn down to the ground before the first fire hose is uncurled – all in exchange for the sound of the river outside my window, the blazing smog-free sunset on the peaks that wrap our valley and the inconvenience of an occasional one-stoplight-two-minute traffic jam.

    What I EXPECT with any company whether in the city (50 years in PHX, whew!) or country is honesty and integrity, neither qualities which Hughes possesses..

  68. mtswim says:

    I have been on the phone with customer service for an hour now trying to find out why I am being billed automatically for an account that I closed last July. I have been on hold for most of that time. They want 3 to 5 days to “investigate” but they are not offering to close the account.

    Truly the absolute worst company I have ever dealt with.

    I thought I had finally moved on, but it appears that this is not to be.