I am on a satellite service which is very slow downloads and uploads.
I need a faster service which is not too expensive. Can you recommend one. We live in the bush. Thanks, Diane.
You're right – a satellite broadband connection is not ideal. Satellite broadband uses Low-Earth-Orbit (LOE) satellites to connect to the internet, and unfortunately, the technology is both difficult to set up (in terms of how much it costs) and difficult to connect to (in terms of how it works). The result is that satellite broadband is one of the most inefficient and most expensive ways of creating a broadband connection.
That's the first piece of bad news. The second is that usually, if you're on a satellite broadband connection it's because you don't have any other options in your area. Satellite broadband isn't available on the market in same way that ADSL2+ or mobile broadband or even fibre optic connections are starting to be, because usually it's consider a last resort. The fact that you live in a rural area adds to this: it's very possible that you are too far away from a telephone exchange to be able to get a fixed line connection, or it may just be that ADSL simply isn't available at all at your telephone exchange.
However! Don't despair just yet, because one of the best things about technology is how quickly it changes. You included a home phone number in your personal details, which makes me presume that there is in fact a copper line going into your house that you are able to get a telephone connection on. Theoretically, you should be able to get an ADSL connection just as well. It may not be ADSL2+, but ADSL1 will still be a massive step up from a satellite connection for you.
I'm reluctant to give you any direct advice on particular plans that you "can" get. Most providers have different prices for metropolitan, rural, and regional customers, and they tend to only advertise their metropolitan prices. I'd hate to tell you that you could get a plan for say $50 a month, only for you to ring a provider and have them tell you that in your area, it will actually be $100 a month. However, there are definitely some providers you should call to see what they can do for you in your area. I'd recommend starting with these:
Optus: 1300 137 897
iPrimus: 1300 137 794
Internode: 1300 106 571
After that, if you are still unable to get any of those plans, you could consider looking into Bigpond – they'll be the most expensive provider you can go for, but they might be able to do it as a last resort.
If you still find that you are unable to get ADSL at all in your area, you could try a mobile broadband connection, which operates via a mobile phone tower. Mobile broadband isn't as reliable as a fixed line connection, but if you have a mobile tower relatively close to you in your area, it might be a good alternative to satellite.
Click here to check out the best mobile broadband plans.
If the worst comes to the worst and you find out that ADSL is unavailable and mobile broadband won't work in your area, don't be too downhearted – it's simply a waiting game now for the NBN to roll through your area and you'll be able to connect on an optic fibre connection that will be much, much faster than anything available now even in the heart of the capital cities.
Good luck with everything, Diane! If you have further questions feel free to call us on 1300 106 571.