HSI Rating
4.3 /10

"I have had HughesNet for nine month, service is fast for wired connections, decent for wifi..."

Leisa Hunt | Youngstown, FL
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The good

HughesNet’s services and pricing are on par with other satellite Internet providers while delivering the most features to the most people.

The bad

The customer service at HughesNet could be better, but much of the customer dissatisfaction is with satellite technology in general. It is also a bit expensive for the speed.

HSI's take

The broad availability of HughesNet satellite Internet makes it the perfect choice for people and/or small businesses in rural areas.

HSI Rating

4.3
Overall

Speed 3.5

Value 5.8

Consumer Interest 1.0

Consumer Satisfaction 7.0

The HSI Ratings are an aggregate score assigned by our Internet professionals. It includes several factors, including:

  • HSI's 2015 Consumer Survey
  • Government Data on ISP Speed and Reliability
  • Insights from Industry Insiders
  • On-site Customer Feedback
  • Analysis of Patterns in the HSI Database
  • Feedback from our partners

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HSI's Assessment of Hughesnet

Speed

Hughesnet Internet speeds

Download up to

15 Mbps

Upload up to

2 Mbps

HughesNet satellite Internet offers four service tiers with download speeds ranging from 5 Mbps (Mega-bits per second) to 25 Mbps and upload speeds between 1 and 2 Mbps. Although HughesNet was rated just three out of 10 for speed in a 2015 HSI independent customer satisfaction survey, it still ranked highest among all satellite Internet providers in the survey–ahead of dishNET. The average download speed for HughesNet is 8 Mbps. Although that is the second fastest speed among satellite Internet providers, it’s less than half of what the first place ISP delivers. HughesNet’s average upload speed of .4 Mbps was third fastest and less than 10 percent of the upload speed for the first place ISP. While HughesNet is not the fastest satellite ISP, its speeds are competitive in the marketplace. HughesNet has a monthly data cap that ranges from 10 GB to 40 GB per month, depending on the service package, with more available depending on active promotions. This type of cap is common for satellite Internet providers.(Notes on Latency)No matter how many Mbps a customer gets with a satellite Internet subscription they will likely experience latency issues. To understand the difference between speed and latency, think of an Internet connection like a water pipe. Download speed (also called bandwidth) is like the size of the pipe. Latency is similar to water pressure. Satellite providers like HughesNet tend to have good bandwidth but less-than-stellar latency. Imagine that you turn on the faucet and get enough water, but it takes a few seconds to turn on. s long as you don’t mind waiting a moment for pages and videos to buffer, you’ll still be able to use the Internet. Chat and skype will work, but with some delay. Many games will be playable, but those that require quick reaction (such as first-person shooter games) will be basically unplayable. Services like email and Facebook will usually work without any perceptible delay.



Value

Hughesnet Internet Prices

Internet Packages starting at

$40/mo

Top-Tier packages starting at

$130/mo

The four HughesNet service tiers range in cost from $49.99 to $129.99. They offer new customers a $10 discount for the first three months. Customers will also be charged $9.99 per month in equipment rental and an initial $99 activation fee. HughesNet requires a two-year contract and charges an early cancelation fee of up to $400. The actual amount of the cancelation fee depends on the amount of time left on a customer’s contract. All of these costs are in-line with standard industry prices.



Customer Satisfaction

Many review sites have HughesNet ranked pretty low, however, a lot of the complaints are not specific to HughesNet, but are lamentations on the limitations of satellite Internet technology in general. While satellite Internet can be plagued by latency issues, in many areas it is the only Internet service available. This causes many customers to post reviews based on their frustration with a lack of options, not necessarily their HughesNet service. All that being said, HughesNet could use some improvement in the customer service department. Although HughesNet ranked ahead of dishNET for customer satisfaction in speed, it was behind dishNET for overall customer satisfaction. Since both companies provide Internet through satellite technology, the lower score cannot be explained by the technology.


Details about brand prices, speeds, and other features may not be readily available for all brands and are always subject to change. While the brand reviews on HighSpeedInternet.com are well researched and every attempt is made to keep the information up to date, limited access to relevant information may cause occasional inaccuracies.