Tuesday, June 24, 2008

High Speed Access

Welcome to my world. For the last six years or so the phone company has been giving us the same old line. "I'm sorry. DSL is not yet available in your area but it may be in six months. Which leaves us with only two options, dialup (one dialup server handles all the small ISPs in the area - the standard connection is 19,000bps) or satellite.

Satellite is like fast dialup only with interruptions for storms in our area (Central Louisiana) and our gateway (Duluth - you got it, Minnesota)

Imagine you sit down to your browser and click a bookmark from your list, then you count. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, eleve.. okay it's up. Instead of nearly immediate access to pages like real high speed internet, satellite users wait for 8-25 seconds for pages to load.

There are a few issues with that: First, I don't have the time to wait on page after page to load, to follow other links, to input, to update. True high speed would save me a couple of hours a day.

The service is only 'good' in perfect weather. If a thick white cloud shows up to the south, the speed slows down to a crawl.

And the cost of satellite, the medium plan is $70 a month! This is a prime source of irritation to me when the bulk of satellite users are in rural areas without other options and yet the government has yet to do what they've promised for years - make fast access to internet available for everyone.

The problem is not technology or distance from the local station because in Mississippi my friend who lives 30 miles from the closest station has received high speed access a year ago through fiber-optics.

So, give me a little feedback. I know I'll just be even more irritated but I'd like to know what's the average length of time it takes for your pages to load.

1 comment:

Leah Braemel said...

Well, we've talked about this before - we have DSL but there's been a lot of reports about how very few DSL providers deliver the speeds they promise. I get about 900 bps where I'm supposed to get 3500. Yet I'm not allowed to complain or get a rebate until I reach less than 400! What a ripoff. But no, it doesn't take me more than a few seconds to load a page. If it takes longer than that I click off or assume the net is down.

How frustrated you must feel most days.