In a Nutshell
- Unlimited data (somewhat)
- Bundled plans for more savings
- Widely available
- Unlimited data isn’t quite unlimited
- Expensive plans in some areas
- Price lock isn’t what it seems
Viasat at a Glance
Best for: Basic internet usage, out of town areas, families
Starting Price: $40 - $89.99+
Connection Type: Satellite, DSL hybrid
Download Speeds: 12-100 Mbps
Coverage: 51 states and territories
Money-back Guarantee: None
What Services and Features Does Viasat Offer
Viasat has satellite internet connections. These connections are up to 3x faster than traditional cable services. Plus, satellite is more readily available in a greater spectrum of locations, making Viasat a more desirable choice for many out of towners. In fact, you can get a Viasat satellite connection in any state within the United States. Viasat also partners with AT&T to combine satellite with DSL internet services with its Viasat Flex program. Combining services allows for faster, more reliable connections.
Viasat’s biggest selling point is its availability, covering 98% of the US. The company is particularly popular in defense industries, including cyber security, air, and ground security. Viasat offers additional services to customers, including TV, home phone, security solutions, and advanced support. When you bundle additional services with your internet plan, you’ll pay a cheaper price than you would for the individual products separately.
Prices, Plans, and Value for Money
Viasat plans are expensive. And they appear to get more expensive as time goes on. According to the website, Viasat has a price-lock guarantee for two years. But on the plans pricing pages, it clearly states that you’ll pay more after the first three months. So Viasat seems to be sending a confusing message to its customers.
* Plan pricing and availability changes depending on your location. For example, the pricing table listed above is for a rural area in NY. Meanwhile, if you move your location to Brooklyn, the prices do drop considerably.
The monthly fee doesn’t include equipment rental, which is another $12.99 per month. You can also purchase additional care for $8.99 a month. This plan comes with annual dish relocation and priority customer support. You also won’t have to pay for service calls, which is normally $95 without the EasyCare plan.
Viasat has long commitments, 24 months to be exact. That’s a long time to sign up for a service that you aren’t sure if you’re going to be happy with or want to use. The cancellation policy is also hefty. You’ll pay $200 for each month remaining on your contract. This is a lot more than what some other companies charge as a flat rate early cancellation fee.
Ease of Use, Hardware, and Setup
Installation is done professionally since a dish has to be installed directly onto your roof or external wall of your home. You can also get it installed into the ground. BTW, installation should take around 2-3 hours.
There is no DIY installation option. Bear in mind that you must have the consent of the HOA to install a satellite dish on your property. There is also a 90-day warranty on faulty equipment.
Once connected, you can use your My Viasat customer portal to set up, control, and change your account settings. These include parental controls, password settings, updating payment information, viewing your billing statements, and more. It’s all pretty intuitive.
Viasat has built-in security called Viasat Shield. It has features like continuous monitoring, suspicious activity blocking, and notifications about cyberattacks. You can also monitor activity on all your devices and set up parental controls for safer internet usage. Viasat Shield allows you to set up controlled-permissions for your internet usage, includes browser protection for safer online browsing, and it also guards all devices on the network.
Viasat claims to offer unlimited data (with only some plans, it’s important to note). But it clearly states that after a certain amount of data usage, you will be prioritized behind other customers. So in essence you can get throttled, or at least slowed down considerably, after you go over a threshold. In our books, that’s the same thing. And it is definitely not unlimited. Viasat loses big points for this unimpressive practice.
Viasat Customer Service
Viasat has a help center with a lot of useful information. You can also speak to a customer support rep on the phone for more personalized service.
6155 El Camino Real
Carlsbad, CA 92009
Is Viasat really unlimited?
Technically yes. You can still stream, download, and use the internet as long as you want. But you will get slower speeds after your cap if there is traffic.
Does Roku work with Viasat?
Yes, you can connect several different types of smart TVs and other mobile devices including Roku.
Is Viasat affected by weather?
Satellite connections can be affected by severe storms or heavy snow. But rain and cloud coverage won’t affect your connection.
Viasat has some nice features, but there’s plenty that may leave you wanting. The pricing plans are expensive, the terms of service are hard to make out, and your speeds can (and most likely will) be throttled after you reach a certain limit. It’s difficult for us to recommend this kind of service. Viasat may not be the best choice unless you live somewhere that doesn’t get fiber optics or more traditional coverage.