Best Business Satellite Internet

Best overall
Viasat
Viasat
  • Icon Yes  Light
    $$$
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Fastest satellite speeds
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Nationwide availability
  • Icon Cons  Light
    Price hike after three months
Cheapest
HughesNet
HughesNet
  • Icon Yes  Light
    $$
  • Icon Pros  Light
    No hard data limits
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Nationwide availability
  • Icon Cons  Light
    Slower speeds than Viasat
Best for custom solutions
Skycasters logo
Skycasters
  • Icon Yes  Light
    $$$$$
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Highly customizable business internet solutions
  • Icon Pros  Light
    Nationwide availability
  • Icon Cons  Light
    Hard data limits on all plans

Data effective 1/10/20. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.


Kristin Cooke
Researcher & Writer
Read More
Published on February 24, 2020

Bottom line

Our pick for the best business satellite internet provider is Viasat, thanks to its fast speeds. HughesNet comes in second place and can be a cost-effective solution for businesses with low data use who don’t want to shell out hundreds of dollars for an internet plan.

Skycasters and Broad Sky Networks are satellite internet companies that utilize VSAT (very small aperture terminal) systems to deliver internet. VSAT isn’t for everyone—equipment starts around $2,000—but VSAT systems can be fully mobile in otherwise off-grid areas, which is just what some mining, government, and disaster response operations need.

What is the best satellite internet for business?

Use this chart to compare the best business satellite internet companies.

Provider
Connection type
Price*
Speed
Data cap
Learn more
Viasat

Viasat

Satellite

$50.00– $500.00/mo.*

Up to 100 Mbps

Unlimited†

HughesNet

HughesNet

Satellite

$49.99– $149.99/mo. for the first 6 mos., then $69.99–$199.99/mo.

Up to 25 Mbps

35–100 GB‡ (varies by plan)

Skycasters logo

Skycasters

Satellite and wireless

$99.00– $499.00§

Up to 20 Mbps

2 GB–8 GB, then by the gig (unlimited plans also available)

Broad Sky Networks logo

Broad Sky

Satellite + 4G LTE

Starts at $200.00/mo.§

Up to 25 Mbps

Up to 500 GB

*Data current as of 1/10/2020. Prices and availability vary by location.

†If you reach your monthly data allotment, your speeds may be reduced to 1 to 3 Mbps until the beginning of the next billing cycle.

‡HughesNet has no hard data limits, so if you reach the monthly data allotment you will have uninterrupted data, but at reduced speeds (typically 1–3 Mbps).

§Price does not include VSAT equipment or installation fees, which start around $1,944.

Best overall: Viasat

viasat logo
Viasat
  • Check
    Fastest satellite speeds
  • Check
    Nationwide availability
  • X
    Price hike after three months
  • X
    Maximum speed varies by location
  • X
    Hard data limits on some plans

*Even on unlimited plans, download speed will be slowed to 1-3 Mbps after reaching monthly data allotment of 10, 40, 60, or 100 GB, depending on your plan.

Viasat has our vote as the best satellite internet for small businesses, thanks to its fast speeds. Speeding past any other satellite provider, Viasat offers download speeds up to 35 Mbps in most locations and up to 100 Mbps in select areas.

Viasat Business internet plans support a wide variety of businesses that are located off the beaten track—including furniture businesses, horse ranches, vineyards, guest lodges and hotels, and smart farms.

Viasat Business Metered 35 Mbps plans (available nationwide)

You can choose from metered or unmetered satellite plans. We recommend Viasat Business Unlimited 35 for most businesses, since this plan gives you access to unmetered data (although it will slow way down if you reach your priority data cap before the end of the billing cycle).

Plan
Speed and data
Price*

Unlimited 35*

Up to 35 Mbps download and 4 Mbps upload

$175/mo.

10 GB metered data

Additional usage: $10/GB

$80/mo.

20 GB metered data

Additional usage: $6/GB

$100/mo

50 GB metered data

Additional usage: $3/GB

$150/mo.

Unlimited 100 Mbps

Additional usage: $2/GB

$500/mo.

*Prices as of 2/13/2020 with a 24-month contract. Prices increase after three months.

Viasat Unlimited 12 Mbps plans (available nationwide)

Plan
Speed and data
Price

Unlimited 12

Up to 12 Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload

$250/mo.*

10 GB metered data

Additional usage: $10/GB

$100/mo.*

50 GB metered data

Additional usage: $6/GB

$175/mo.*

*Prices as of 2/13/2020 with a 24-month contract. Prices increase after three months.

Viasat Unlimited 60–100 Mbps plans (limited availability)

Plan
Speed and data
Price

Unlimited 60

Up to 60 Mbps download and 4 Mbps upload

$300/mo.*

Unlimited 100

Up to 100 Mbps download and 4 Mbps upload

$500/mo.*

*Prices as of 2/13/2020 with a 24-month contract. Prices increase after three months.

One of the things we like about Viasat is that it offers Unlimited plans, which don’t have a hard data cap. Unlimited data doesn’t mean you can get as much full-speed data as you want every month. What it means is that if you reach your data allotment before the end of the month, you can keep using data at reduced speeds and at no additional cost. 

There are several Viasat plans that do have hard data limits, however. If you have a Viasat 10 GB, 20 GB, or 50 GB plan that is not unlimited, you’ll be charged for extra data you use during a month-long billing cycle.

Cheapest: HughesNet

hughesnet logo
HughesNet
  • Check
    No hard data limits
  • Check
    Nationwide availability
  • Check
    Contract-free options
  • Check
    Free standard installation
  • X
    Slower speeds than Viasat
  • X
    Confusing data allotment (data is split between daytime and evening use)

†Prices as of 2/13/2020. Requires 24 month agreement. *Even on unlimited plans, data will be slowed to 1-3 Mbps speeds after reaching monthly data allotment of priority data until the next billing cycle begins.

HughesNet Business internet is a straightforward satellite provider with the most affordable starter internet plans. All HughesNet plans offer 25 Mbps upload speeds and unlimited data. The only difference between plans is how much full-speed data you get before you’re slowed down after you hit the data cap.

HughesNet small-business plans are good for people who run businesses in small towns or remote locations. HughesNet can deliver a dependable internet connection if you need daily access to email, online research, VoIP, fax, video conferencing, and other common business activities but lack access to DSL, cable, or fiber internet providers.

HughesNet Business satellite internet plans

Plan
Speeds
Total data usage (per month)
Anytime data/daytime data*
Starting price (per month)

Business 35

Up to 25 Mbps download and 4 Mbps upload**

35 GB

10 GB/25 GB

$49.99/mo.†

Business 50

Up to 25 Mbps download and 4 Mbps upload**

50 GB

25 GB/25 GB

$79.99/mo.†

Business 75

Up to 25 Mbps download and 4 Mbps upload**

30 GB

50 GB/25 GB

$119.99/mo.†

Business 100

Up to 25 Mbps download and 4 Mbps upload**

100 GB

75 GB/25 GB

$149.99/mo.†

*Anytime data can be used any time of the day, 25/7. Daytime data must be used between the hours of 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. †Prices as of 2/13/2020. Requires 24 month agreement. **Speeds listed are for priority data. Once the monthly allotment of priority data is used up, download speeds will be slowed from 25 Mbps to 1–3 Mbps.

Although HughesNet speeds aren’t as fast as Viasat, HughesNet does offer unlimited data on all its plans. That means that after you reach your monthly allotment of priority data, you’ll be able to continue using the internet at reduced speeds—usually 1 to 3 Mbps—at no additional charge. So although sending emails might take a few seconds longer by the end of the month, you won’t ever run out of data or be stuck with a hefty bill for extra data charges.

Best for custom solutions: Skycasters

Skycasters logo
  • Check
    Highly customizable business internet solutions
  • Check
    Nationwide availability
  • Check
    Mobile options
  • X
    High price per GB
  • X
    Hard data limits on all plans
  • X
    Very expensive unlimited plans (up to $3,450/mo.)

†Prices as of 2/13/2020. Requires 24 month agreement.

Skycasters offers customized satellite internet services for remote or mobile businesses. Although pricey, Skycasters offers solutions for internet cafés and businesses in the oil, gas, and mining industries. Utilizing a combination of VSAT (very small aperture terminal) satellite internet and 3G fixed-wireless data, Skycasters delivers dependable internet to companies all over the US.

In addition to traditional satellite service received through equipment mounted on a building, it also offers fully mobile solutions that are used by mining companies and emergency services.

The cost for a Skycasters internet plan is prohibitive for most small businesses though—VSAT satellite dish equipment prices start around $1,400 with an $800 pole-mount installation fee.

Data cost is also quite high when compared to Viasat or HughesNet. You’ll pay $799 for 10 GB of data per month. (Gulp!) So, Skycasters definitely isn’t the solution for everybody. But if you are looking for reliable satellite internet for an oil mining operation, Skycasters might be just what you need.

Best for explorers: Broad Sky Networks

Broad Sky Networks logo
  • Check
    Long-range commercial internet solutions
  • Check
    International availability (coverage includes all of North and South America)
  • X
    High equipment cost (starting around $2,000)
  • X
    No unlimited data plans

†Prices as of 2/13/2020. Requires 24 month agreement.

Satellite internet service from Broad Sky Networks is widely available throughout the United States, including extremely remote areas. It’s often used in areas that have challenging terrain and adverse weather conditions.

Similar to Skycasters, Broad Sky offers satellite and wireless internet via VSAT technology (very small aperture terminal). Often utilized by scientists, explorers, sports teams, sailors, and vacationers, VSAT satellite dishes can be stationary or mobile.

The Broad Sky Networks satellite dish can be mounted on buildings, busses, vans, and boats. It’s expensive, though, requiring a big initial investment for custom VSAT equipment (starting at around $2,000). But, if you need a fully mobile and independent satellite internet system for a mobile laboratory or office, it could be just the ticket.

Our verdict: Most rural small businesses should go with Viasat.

Viasat Internet is our top choice for most rural or small-town businesses. With speeds up to 100 Mbps available in some areas, Viasat has the fastest satellite internet speeds in the industry, beating out HughesNet by a hefty 75 Mbps. Plus, Viasat has lower equipment costs than VSAT providers like Skycasters or Broad Sky Networks.

If you need satellite internet on a budget, we recommend HughesNet’s low data plans. We like the attractive price point of the Business 35—where else can you get business satellite internet for $69.99 per month? (Answer: nowhere.) You won't get much full-speed data with HughesNet's budget plan, but that's one way to prevent your employees from watching YouTube videos all day. ;-)

Business satellite internet FAQ

Can I get reliable internet in a rural area for a startup business?

If you have a startup business in a rural area, you can get reliable, cheap internet from HughesNet Business 35, which gives you 35 GB of monthly data at speeds up to 25 Mbps for $69.99 per month. If you have a higher budget or heavier data needs, opt for Viasat Business Unlimited 200, which gives you 200 GB of data at speeds up to 35 Mbps for $400 per month.

Can I use a VPN on satellite internet?

Using a VPN (virtual private network) with satellite internet can make your connection slower, and it isn’t usually recommended. Broad Sky recommends 4G LTE service for customers who need to use a VPN. Some providers, such as Viasat, offer specific recommendations for using a VPN, such as using SSL-based VPNs. If you must use a VPN, get a satellite plan with the fastest available speed.

Does the data cap with satellite internet count uploads and downloads?

Yes, data caps meter all data usage that's uploaded or downloaded on your satellite internet connection. So while streaming movies and downloading video games eats up a lot of data, so can uploading photos or videos to social media.

When can I get fast satellite internet from Starlink?

In mid to late 2020, Starlink (SpaceX) will be launching satellite internet service in parts of the US and Canada. Thanks to LEO (low-Earth orbit) satellites, Starlink has promised faster, better, and cheaper satellite internet service for rural areas.

How can I get satellite internet for my home?

You can get home satellite internet with Viasat or HughesNet. HughesNet has the lowest prices, while Viasat excels in delivering the fastest speeds. By 2021, you can start looking into next generation satellite service from Starlink and other companies entering the marketplace. To learn more about residential satellite internet in your area, visit our Satellite Providers page.

Kristin Cooke
Written by
Kristin Cooke
After graduating with a degree in English from the University of Utah, Kristin learned to geek speak while working as a technical recruiter, interviewing software developers and tech companies. For over 20 years, she has created award-winning content for technology, health, and finance companies. Kristin is an advocate for affordable internet for all and writes about rural internet solutions, satellite internet news, and tech products at SatelliteInternet.com. Her work has been featured in New York Post, PCMag, Forbes, Business Insider, Telecompetitor, Space.com, and The Benton Institute for Broadband & Society.