Is this satellite? No. We actually got into this business because satellite
was our only other alternative. Satellite's main advantage is reach. From about 22,300 miles over the equator,
it can serve most of the globe.
That is also its disadvantage. It's 22,300 miles up and 22,300 miles down. Then the TCP/IP acknowledgment travels
the same path. That's almost 90,000 miles round trip. Latency of 700-900 milliseconds is typical. A satellite customer
west of Durango was getting 1311 ms to a site we ping in 67 ms. (12/05/2006) In our tests, Discovery Speed customers
can ping Bayfield to Chicago in 70 ms or less. Several sites in Australia were under 250 ms.
High latency manifests itself when pages load part
way and then stop, or when downloads timeout and need to be restarted. Online gamers get "killed" before
they even see their adversary.
The great distances make satellite more vulnerable to atmospheric disturbance and coronal mass ejections. (CME
are clouds of charged particles that arrive at earth a day or two after a solar flare.) We're currently at the
low point of the eleven year solar activity cycle, so it's going to get more interesting.
Satellite reserves most of it's bandwidth for downloads, and limits the upload speed - severely. We provide high
Low latency and high upload speed make Discovery Speed service viable for web cams, auctions, home monitoring,
sending photos, etc.
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