If you are fortunate enough to live in the country side where things are a little less built up then the chances are that your internet options are not fantastic.
Most people will agree that the internet is an amazing thing. It has allowed us to connect with people from all over the world, and it has also allowed us to get information and access to resources from all over the place. Which brings us to the point of this article, where can the internet be accesses from?
Generally speaking, people that live outside of major city centers often find that their internet is one of the biggest annoyances that that they have to deal with. And that is not to say that there is no internet out there, but rather that the choices that are there are not up to modern standards.
If you have ever asked how can I get internet in the middle of nowhere, then this is going to be the article for you.
How do I get WiFi in the middle of nowhere?
The first thing you need to establish is whether or not there are any services available in your area. Below are some basics that you will need to confirm before you can get your hopes up too high.
- Broadband Address Checkers: The easiest way to determine what kind of services are available in you area are for you to use an address checker. If you are in the USA then you can look at a provider like Xfinity , CenturyLink or AT&T to check your address, or if you are in the UK then check out Virgin Media availability in your area here.
- Consider ‘A Wireless Internet Service Provider’ (WISP) if it’s Available: Sometimes you just can’t find a traditional internet service provider in your area out in the middle of nowhere. In these cases you can ask around (remember, people are usually a lot friendlier out there in the country side) and find out how they connect to the internet.
If you have to explain what the internet is to them then you might be too far out to be saved. However, more often than not you will find that internet can be delivered by a WISP. They set up long range wireless internet connections via relay stations that rely on direct line of site. Some have been known to set up at distances of 10 miles or even more.
All you need is a receiver and a wireless router in your house to provide you and your family with some internet. (Your provider should have access to great hardware deals when you sign up with them, but if they don’t then check out our Amazon Affiliate links throughout the article and find out what all of our readers have been buying.)
The only real draw back to these systems is that weather can affect you connectivity. (Ask me how I know…).
Rain, wind (if your station is on a wobbly pole then you must have some guide lines to tension it securely), mist and fog, and even cloudy weather can all have varying degrees of negative effects on you internet so be prepared for a less than amazing experience when the weather starts acting up.
- StarLink Network: The service offered by the world’s sometimes wealthiest man, Elon Musk and his StarLink company is a compelling option if you have access to the constellation (Check your address here ). The service is still in its early stages, even though it has over 2000 satellites in its constellation as of January 2022, but they are targeting people that have no internet options at all.
StarLink’s ‘Connecting the Unconnected’ page demonstrates this perfectly. Their initial ‘Better than Nothing’ program was a real test for people and was intended to set their expectations realistically, even though some users achieved 150mbps download speeds and 15mbps uploads, with great latency. This has been declining though, and according to Forbes:
“During the first quarter of 2021, Ookla clocked Starlink’s median download speeds at 97.23 Mbps and upload speeds at 13.89 Mbps. Starlink’s median download speed has declined by nearly 10 Mbps, and upload speeds by 5 Mbps”
But still, over 80mbps will get you decent video streaming and general internet access if you have absolutely no internet at all is incredible. That might make the long waiting times for hardware, relative high costs ($500 for hardware and $99 monthly subscription) and intermittent service in some areas worthwhile for you, but that is for each individual to make the call on.
- Traditional Satellite Services: The general state of traditional satellite internet services is one of high cost, high latency, terrible uploads, and data caps. Some are better than others, and can offer uncapped data and decent download speeds, for a price. Your input lag makes gaming impossible in most cases, but if you are really stuck then this is an option that you can consider.
How do I get internet in the middle of the woods?
Sometimes you can get lucky with a service such as LTE or 5G if the towers are close enough to your location, even out in the woods. This is not always the case though, so the options that we have mentioned above are probably more likely solutions if you have no signal out there at all.
If you do have some cell tower exposure then the cheapest and easiest way to check your what your options are is by looking at the signal bars on your cellphone, and check for the 3G, 4G, 4G+, LTE or 5G emblem at the top of your screen. If you have one of those icons and the signal bar is over the halfway point in signal strength, and the signal doesn’t drop out every few minutes, then you should be golden.
However, if you do have the right cellular based internet service available to you then you can always look at purchasing an external antenna for your home/cabin/cave. It has the ability to pull in more signal from the cell towers close by, and then feed that increased signal down a coax cable into your router.
Most of these LTE and 5G routers have a built in WiFi unit that then relays the internet to the rest of you house. They are usually not great at this though, which is why we often recommend a standalone WiFi router that handles that segment of your network. Check out our Amazon Affiliate links below for LTE modems and WiFi routers.
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How can I get internet anywhere anytime?
The simple answer is with a smartphone, or a battery powered LTE router. Check out our selection of mobile LTE routers below if you are thinking about taking your internet with you without needing to set up a mobile hotspot on your phone.
Having a backup connection to the internet is essential if you travel, or work from home. This means that if your fiber or cable internet goes out then you can at least still continue sending memes to your co-workers via email and messaging apps. Disaster averted.
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We’ve managed to squeeze a lot of information about your burning questions about how you can get internet in the middle of nowhere. The answers are not always what we want or expect, but the options that are available to us are quite astonishing if you think about it.
Whether or not you can get WiFi in the middle of nowhere will depend on the underlying middle of nowhere internet technologies that we have outlined for you here. As for how to get high speed internet in the middle of nowhere, we think that StarLink is probably worth a gamble if you are in their service range, but traditional services such as a WISP or LTE tower are almost always going to be cheaper.
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