Satellite internet speeds suffer serious slowdown

PATRICK CONNORS

Ground stations play an integral role in NBNco's "Sky Muster" satellite broadband plan Source: Supplied

Ground stations play an integral role in NBNco’s “Sky Muster” satellite broadband plan Source: Supplied

Rural Australians are facing a number of issues with internet speeds, as the government’s Interim Satellite Service (ISS) faces increasingly congested servers.

Residents of outback Queensland are dependent on the ISS for services such as distance education and health check-ups.

Despite the Prime Minister’s claims that rural Queensland would receive a regional fibre-optic network in the near-future, the new system is yet to materialise

The federal government has stated internet speeds are set to receive a substantial boost, with the launch of multiple satellites, with the first set to launch later this October.

The government’s NBN rollout over the past year has seen boosts in internet speeds throughout South East Queensland, however many regions in the Far North and Central Queensland remain limited in their internet speeds.

Cairns resident Jackson Hooper uses the internet for work-related purposes, and feels short-changed by the government’s backflip on the fibre-optic servers. He stated that the current Satellite service in FNQ  is in need of a major overhaul.

“It’s impossible to get anything done on up here. It just crawls along at a snail’s pace, it’s absolutely bloody useless.”

ISPs have tried to curb the congested server issues by implementing a system dubbed “shaping”, which severely slows down users internet speeds once they exceed their data limit, along with implementing on-peak and off-peak internet periods.

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull declared the ISS a “failure” in an interview on the ABC’s 7.30 last Monday.

A representative for the Department of Communications stated that the government’s new satellite, dubbed ‘Sky Muster’, will fix the majority of issues outback Australians have been suffering in regards to internet speeds.

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