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Actually useable when data allowance is gone?

New Poster

Actually useable when data allowance is gone?

We were looking for a more cost effective option than our Verizon jetpak and more reliable phone service than our cells out here in the country so I called hughesnet. When I got signed up, the rep led me to believe that our internet access was unlimited and never mentioned # of gigs / data allowance. I felt really deceived and called in to complain about the deceit. After talking with the account manager, I'm going to try it for a little while since I have 30 days within which to cancel.

After reading many community posts, I would like to know if anyone is satisfied with aspects of the service. I understand the data management concerns but will we be satisfied with the phone service? And when you've used all your data, can you do ANYTHING on the Internet? This is where I felt deceived. I told him I missed our unlimited data from cable and he said he understood and he could help. So "technically" the Internet is unlimited, but can you actually access anything? I'd like a better idea so I can make an informed decision on whether or not to keep hughesnet.

Thank you,
Mary Beth
21 REPLIES 21
Assistant Professor

Re: Actually useable when data allowance is gone?

Although this is the place where you see mostly complaints it is also one of the few places people who are actually satisfied with the service post comments and try to help other customers get the most from their service. Most people do not go out of their way to post positive comments on a web site.

I can not speak as to how the VoIP phone service works since I don't have it. In the 10+ years I've had HughesNet I've had maybe 3 problems that impacted the quality of service and they have corrected them without issue once I brought it to their attention.

This site is the best place to get help from the official reps and other customers. Curious are you suggesting you have other options for an internet provider?
New Member

Re: Actually useable when data allowance is gone?

I have had the VoIP service for about 3 years, it has a little delay in the conversation sometimes & at times you will hear a echo, but after getting used to it don't pay any attention to it anymore. And for no more than the service costs I think it worth it not to have a 85 or 90 phone bill a month, & as far as when you are out of data, it really slows down still faster than dial up, but not much
Alum

Re: Actually useable when data allowance is gone?

Hi greycrochet,

I see this is your first post so welcome to the community! With 1 million plus subscribers, we have plenty of happy customers who are able to use their service with relatively no issues. Most of our customers on average do not use up their anytime allowance. With that said, when subscribing to HughesNet if you have the opportunity to choose one of our plans with smart browsing available you'll really be getting the best of our service. Smart browsing is a feature that allows you to keep browsing normally even after running out of bandwidth. Typically yes, your service will slow down but it should also be usable even without this feature. If you ever do run into any concerns as mentioned by our wonderful community members this is the best place to get help.

You are also within the 30 day trial period but take note that there is a 20 day relaxed bandwidth period in affect to help new customers get their devices up to date. If you have any other questions or concerns please feel free to ask. We'll be glad to help.

Thank you,
Chris
New Poster

Re: Actually useable when data allowance is gone?

All of our options for internet are satellite or cell so based on data usage. I miss the old days when we had non-stop flat fee internet with our cable provider but we knew this was something we would have to deal with when we moved to the country a year ago. The trade off was worth it. It's just a bit inconvenient.


I'm glad to hear that  you've been satisfied with the service. Do you normally use all your data in a month and experience the slower speeds? I'm just wondering if you can still check facebook and email when the speed is throttled back (or whatever the terminology is).

Thanks!

Mary Beth

Associate Professor

Re: Actually useable when data allowance is gone?

*goes into actual non-supportive of Hughesnet mode*

It depends on a few things, what plan you select, and how congested your gateways are.

For instance, I am on a rather congested gateway with a 20GB/50GB/SmartBrowse plan, once I run out of data, typically I notice I can browse most websites fine on one or two computers, speeds are slowed down yes, but normal browsing of Facebook, and CNN isn't really impacted.

BUT, if I start streaming lets say, a youtube video, or try to load a TON of pictures at one time on 9gag or something similar, my connection ends up being hard throttled.  So yes you can browse the net just fine WITH a smartbrowse plan after you exhaust your data, but a constant download will cause smartbrowse to disable and send you to the hard throttled state for awhile.  Smartbrowse is meant as a way for someone to continue to check facebook, email, and static pages like normal, but to slow the ones that try to youtube too much.

With that said, voice... IMO, voice is horrible, havent tested it, but with 500ms latency or more, it's not going to be nice.  For what it's worth, whoever has the best signal there, tends to offer a home phone solution.  If Verizon is strong in signal there, you can get a StraightTalk Home Phone for $100 + $15/month and get unlimited calls in the USA, if AT&T is strong, I want to say they offer the same thing on Net10 for AT&T/TMobile areas.

As for gaming....  I am talking actual PC games, they need low latency, and satellite doesn't offer that.  Some people can game with it, but they have grown used to the lag time.

*leaves the non-supportive side of Hughesnet mode*

Smartbrowsing helps, but you need to make sure of a few things, you have two allowance buckets, night time (Bonus Bytes, 2AM to 8AM) and daytime (Anytime Bytes), the plans typically have 50GB of Bonus Bytes, and then the Anytime Bytes varies on area, from 5GB to 50GB depending on plan.

So if you use 20GB on Verizon a month, a 20/50GB plan on Hughesnet should suffice just fine for you.
New Poster

Re: Actually useable when data allowance is gone?

Hi Chris,

We will likely use up our anytime allowance regularly. My uncle-in-law and mother-in-law are retired and live with us so they are home most of the time using data. Neither one is having an easy time understanding the limitations when you have an "allowance" since they have always had flat fee cable internet access. ;-\

I've not heard of the "smart browsing" feature. Does that mean it's not available in my area? How would I find out?

What does a "relaxed bandwidth period" mean exactly? Are we actually using more than it's showing on our little monitor? I'm trying help them understand what they can "afford" to do and stay within our allowance. (I've already encouraged them to do any downloading of books etc. between when they get up and 8 a.m. to take advantage of that night time allowance.) If this isn't going to be realistic for the first 20 days, I will wait to really assess until after that.

Thank you so much for your response!

Mary Beth

Associate Professor

Re: Actually useable when data allowance is gone?

I can access Facebook on a SmartBrowse plan after exhausting my data, but that's only if I am not trying to do a dozen other things at one time.  SmartBrowse works based on the idea of, "If he visits and only needs bursts, let him have full bursts, but if hes trying to stream/download, throttle them after a little while".
New Poster

Re: Actually useable when data allowance is gone?

Thank you, Champion Charles! We don't have any really good phone options. We've been functioning with our cell phones since we moved a year ago. Our reception is a little spotty so we usually need to sit in one of a couple of spots to have a conversation. That's not a problem for me. I totally despise talking on the phone. My mother-in-law on the other hand...she's a talker! She lives with us and gets frustrated when a call drops or cuts in and out so the phone is for her. :-) It was going to cost us $1,200 to have an actual land line installed (that should tell you just how far off the grid we are!) and I just can't justify that chunk of change if we have other options.

We don't do any gaming, would like to stream on-demand from Directv or Netflix occasionally, but mostly our basic internet (Facebook, browsing, occasional apps like Candy Crush) is what we need. Hopefully this will work for us.

Thanks again for your assessment!

Mary Beth

Alum

Re: Actually useable when data allowance is gone?

Hi Mary Beth,

The smart browsing feature availability does depend on your location. You are currently subscribed to our Prime plan. In your area the only plan that has this feature available is the Max plan, however it is more expensive. In other areas smart browsing is available on our lower tier plans but again it all depends on your location. 

Relaxed bandwidth means that your meter at this time will reset every day or even sooner. You've only been a customer for a few days so far. How many devices are in your home? Do you have PC's or Mac's? I ask mainly because this would be a great time to download a program called Glasswire which monitors the data being used on the machine it is installed on. You can only download this on windows machines but it has helped many of our customers pinpoint what they use their data on most. Looking forward to your reply.

Thank you,
Chris