Satellite internet

I'm looking to go on an extended trip (3+ months) around the USA. I run a software business, so having internet is pretty crucial. I like to camp in remote areas without a cell signal. I've heard the Wilson WeBoost is alright, but it won't magically give you 4G if you are in an area without cell.

Has anyone done research into satellite internet options? I realize that speeds are going to be crap, expensive, but I really just need to be able to monitor email and load simple web pages.

Too bad the Inreach Explorer is not hotspot capable.

I've seen really bad reviews on the Iridium Go. Like 15 minutes to load a google page, bad. And can't load native Gmail, either.

The dish is probably a bit much for me...
If you want anything but the miserable speed of Iridium Go you will have to have a dish. We use a 1.2 meter ViaSat, good link speed, the cost of entry isn't horrendous, low 5 digits. Monthly fee is based on data used, I can't remember off the top of my head but I think it's $40 per 500MB.


Expedition Leader
We had Hughes at our remote property, and it was very slow. But, it was service. We were lucky to have a government research station set up near us a few years ago with a 4g cell service.

An acquaintance with a off grid cabin has a much larger antenna he uses with Hughes. He claims the size made the speed better?
In general satellite internet is crap, however it's better than no internet. loves to defecate upon their customers...
Correction: consumer grade satellite internet is crap.

I work in the satellite industry and portable satellite access can be quite good, but you have to be willing to have a reasonable size antenna (1m is best for Ku and .75m for Ka band) and be willing to pay quite a bit for monthly service. Size does matter as the return power limits the upload speed. (And sometime upload speed limits download, but that’s a complicated discussion). Some of plans can only be used a certain number of days, or a certain number of Megabytes.

Plans outside the consumer class are usually fixed rate (ie 5Mbps x 2Mbps) for around $500-700 or metered at a price per Megabit consumed. The latter can make things quite expensive if you don’t know how you’re going to use it.

Another option is BGAN, which is L-band and uses smaller briefcase sized antennas. These are typically 256kbps - 1mbps service and also metered Mbps, and can get quite expensive if you aren’t careful about how you’re using it.

Again the options I’m describing are beyond “consumer grade” if you’re using it for business. Here are some additional resources to look into:

Inmarsat Isat:

Inmarsat BGAN:

Some US based resellers that focus on higher grade (better than commercial) services:

IP Access International



If anything piques your interest, and you need some guidance let me know and I can steer you towards some industry colleagues.