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How Satellite Internet Works

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How Satellite Internet Works

Satellite internet service works differently from how cable, DSL, or other ground-based (terrestrial) internet service providers work. Here's a simple breakdown of what happens when you get online.


High-speed Satellite Internet Step 1

Step 1

A request for a Web page is sent from your computer to a satellite about 22,000 miles out in space. At this altitude, the satellite's period of rotation (24 hours) matches the Earth's, and the satellite always remains in the same spot over the Earth (geosynchronous orbit). Because Internet via satellite is so technologically advanced, this distance hardly makes a difference, even with rural Internet connections. 


High-speed Satellite Internet Step 2

Step 2

The satellite contacts the Hughes Network Operations Center (NOC) which locates the specific Website you have requested.


High-speed satellite Internet Step 3

Step 3

The Website beams the information back along the same path to the NOC, then to the satellite, and then to your computer through your HughesNet dish and modem. Although the signal travels a great distance, there is only a fraction of a second delay during this transmission. This is similar to delay you may have experienced when using a cell phone. In most cases, latency isn't apparent while surfing online. Once technology is set up in your home connecting to the Internet via satellite is simple.


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