HughesNet internet vs. Viasat
HughesNet Gen5 seems equally priced with Viasat internet initially, but that’s no longer the case after three months. Viasat raises prices from 30% to 50% after the three-month intro period. HughesNet prices stay the same. And since both HughesNet and Viasat require a 2-year contract, you’ll be stuck with the Viasat price hike for the majority of your service.
That said, Viasat does offer higher internet speeds and data caps than HughesNet. All that extra money you’ll be paying with Viasat isn’t for nothing. But if you want a satellite internet plan that starts out with an affordable price and stays that way, go with HughesNet by Hughes Network Systems.
HughesNet internet vs. Starlink
Starlink offers more data and faster internet speeds than HughesNet, but HughesNet is much more widely available and reliable—at least for now. Starlink’s network is still in the early stages and could surpass HughesNet in availability and consistency over the next few years, although that’s still up for debate.1 Even though getting Starlink is still a longshot, it’s hard to not be tempted by Starlink’s incredibly fast satellite internet download speeds (speeds go up to 500 Mbps with Starlink Premium) and unlimited data.2 Those are two hot commodities in the rural internet market.
But before you jump on the Starlink bandwagon, know that Starlink availability is still highly limited. Many customers are spending months on the waitlist.3 The installation fees are also much higher than Viasat and HughesNet ($2,500 for Starlink Premium!). With Starlink, you have to buy your equipment outright and then install it yourself—there’s no leasing option.
HughesNet also offers the Bonus Zone with all its satellite internet plans. It allows you to use an additional 50 GB of full-speed data between the hours of 2:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m. Sure, it’s not the best time of day to plop on the couch and stream. But it can come in handy if you plan ahead. For example, you can download shows and movies in advance during that time.