Monday, September 22, 2008

Internet is the Issue...

Well, with our move to the farm just a few days away (still lots of work to do, but I don't want to think about it at this moment) we are struggling with what to do for an internet solution. All along our plan has been to go with the local dial-up and their land-line plan and keep my cellphone that I have for work. But, recently I have by trying to look at other options such as satellite, a cellphone adapter, or a wireless internet service provider. And ... I'm not having much luck figuring anything out!

Here is what I know. You can get Wild Blue or Hughesnet in the area I believe, but the reviews of those satellite companies are touch and go. The price on the satellite internet runs between $50 and $60 for the base plan (is the base plan even worth it?). I find some people that love them and plenty of others that absolutely hate them. Next is the cell adapter route. It appears that maybe the only cell providers available are Alltel or Verizon and those both run about $60 a month, but i'm not completely sure that we would be within their coverage area for the internet thing. Finally, a wireless internet service provider sounds like it would be a cool option, but I have only found one for my area (maybe) and they are something like $70 per month!

Which brings me back to dial-up. It will be the least expensive by far, but it may also be the slowest by far. Do any of you have any experiences, thoughts, or suggestions? We are open to anything right now.

13 comments:

Art Blomquist said...

High speed is expensive. Dial up is atrociously slow. The modern WWW is not designed to run on dial up. We are fortunate to be able to connect via radio to a tower on a mountain 17 kilometers away. Right now our ISP is planning on putting a tower on our hillside to service the local area with high speed. The only other option being satellite or dial up. My advice would be to raise one more heifer to offset the high speed costs.

QuiltedSimple said...

check into verizon - we have DSL through them (through the landline phone line) and it's great - and only $25 a month. Their wireless is expensive ($45 a month) but there's no start up fee - and you can get it pretty much anywhere. Dial up is atrocious. You can also do a DSL through Dish Network (satelite TV) if it is available in your area - same cost as the Verizon DSL.

dR said...

I feel your pain. It seems technology companies have forgotten rural America. Before you sink money into satellite, check the service agreement. They may throttle your service if you reach a maximum monthly usage. Then you'd be paying satellite pricing for dial-up speeds. The local Alltel dealer here lent me a phone to take to my place to determine if it was even feasible to get internet via cell. If you have a weak signal there are roof-top antennas to boost signal, so don't give up. Me? I'm still stuck with d-i-a-l-u-p but I love my "ruralness" more than internet...most of the time ;)

Andrew the Organic Maven said...

Given the amount of use your connection will receive, (this blog, the Epicurious blog, your wife's blog, let alone basic web surfing for research) you will become SO frustrated with the excruciatingly slow speeds a dial-up connection provides.
Cause some money to arrange a faster connection - it will repay you in spades.

creativematt said...

Here's a thought.


Everytime you want to see a webpage, you could send me a letter via the United States Postal Service. I could print off said page and then mail it back to you. If you would like to click on a link, send me another letter- and so on and so forth.

And I'd only charge $25 a month.

I'd call it smethan- mail

Steven said...

I know, you could add google ads to your blog and after about a year you might make enough to pay for a month or two of your web service. :-)

Jean said...

Think hard about DSL. Find out what it have to offer for your area. Dial-up is great if just email, weather, news on regular basis. BUT if you want to do alot more than that... invest in faster mode however you finds it. We have DSL, using landline, lowest end of speed range and it is good enough for us as private home user. There's one-time start-up fee in form of paying for own modem and one other thing. I wondered about using phone through internet. I could use my videophone for free through internet anywhere in the world. No, I don't use it alot but when I do use it.... zero cents. BUT if DSL is not available in your area- maybe you need to suck it up and go dial-up until it is finally available? You could do a lot on home computer, transfer to flash drive, unload it where you have high-speed and do adjusments then. I never tried that but I thought that SHOULD be a solution if I ever gets in a pinch (our library have wireless). Me use cable or dish? Nope, I'm too cheap! We are holding out for wi-max (wireless for whole town, easy done with huge tall grain elevator right there).

Dave_Flora said...

DSL won't work if you're beyond a certain distance from a main switchouse....and it usually isn't far (a mile or so), so that isn't an option for lots of rural folks.
-Dave

sugarcreekfarm said...

With having the farm, and a website, and needing to communicate with customers, you may be able to take the expense of your internet service on your taxes. I don't know for sure - since I work from home my employer pays for our internet service. But something to look into.

John said...

I am using rural wireless internet. Just had to be within line of sight of the tower about 5 miles away. So far, working well. They charge $59 a month which is just a bit more than my DSL line in Austin when you add in all the telephone taxes/fees. Speed is good - 512kb download and 256 kb upload. I had to buy the antenna from them. Cost around $200 to get it set up. Check to see if they have rural wireless there. This works surprisingly well...

John

thanig said...

BuyTelco (http://www.buytelco.net/buytelcodsl.asp
?gtse=goog&kw=Iowa%20Sat
&salesid=160959
&siteid=cd4)
(all on one line.)

claims it offers Cable and DSL Plans starting at $19.95 per month.
Satellite Plans starting at $59.95 per month.

Order by phone. Call 1-800-970-3181

also, might check here: http://www.internetservicedeals.com/isp/iowa.htm

and here.
http://www.stuckiniowa.com/satellite-internet-coming-to-rural-areas-blog-298/
mentions: www.skywayusa.com or calling (866) 697-5992.

Per your technology-minded omaha cousin, Your Mom/Grandma's side. Take care. Keep in mind.

BlueMan said...

First, you should consider satellite Internet only if you have no other land based broadband options.

It sounds like a have a decent wireless provider, but be sure to ask about bandwidth caps, and compare speed to satellite. Those two things are what would make it a better option over satellite.

Mike W. said...

I live on a farm in south central Iowa where the only options available to me are dial-up or satellite. I went with WildBlue's $80 plan. I have been pretty satisfied, although it is slower than DSL.

Once you get used to the way satellite works, you can use the slight delays for thinking what you will do next!

I will say that you will have some outages due to weather. Heavy snow, fog, or rain will knock out your signal. Sometimes a break from be able to be online is a good thing. You can always find something else to do, like play a game with your children!

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