Business satellite broadband

UK businesses operating in remote or rural areas beyond the coverage of existing mobile and fibre networks can now get superfast broadband through satellite networks like Starlink, OneWeb and Eutelsat KONNECT.

Jump to the key parts of our guide:

Wide coverage

Wide coverage

Satellite internet can cover 100% of the UK territory, including its sovereign maritime area, and often further.



LEO satellite networks like Starlink and OneWeb are making the speed and latency of satellite internet akin to traditional broadband.

More expensive

More expensive

Satellite broadband requires expensive space and terrestrial infrastructure, making it comparatively more expensive than fibre or 5G.

What is satellite broadband?

Satellite broadband is a type of internet service that utilises a network of satellites to provide broadband connectivity to users anywhere in the UK. The service requires businesses to install an antenna dish with uninterrupted exposure to the sky.

It is disrupting existing broadband markets by offering high-performance broadband to rural or remote areas that continue to lack access to traditional forms of broadband, such as fibre optics and 5G.

This is due to advancements in internet satellite technology and increasing competition from new entrants like Starlink and OneWeb.

How does satellite broadband work?

All satellite internet providers operate on the same principles:

Transmission: Internet data is streamed from a ground station onto a satellite orbiting the Earth using high-frequency electromagnetic waves.

Satellite relay: The orbiting satellite(s) receive the signal and bounce it back to cover a certain area of the Earth’s surface. The further their orbit, the broader the coverage but the higher the latency.

Reception: The signal is captured by satellite dishes and transmitted via a cable to a modem for decoding and then to a WiFi router to be distributed to all your business devices like laptops and smartphones.

Response: The opposite occurs when your devices send data. Your satellite dish emits a signal back to the satellite and then back down to the ground station to be distributed back to the World Wide Web.

💡 Read our in-depth article on the history of the internet to understand how satellite internet ties in with the past and the future of interconnectivity.

The types of satellite broadband

There are three broad types of satellite broadband, which depend on the orbit plane of the satellite network your business is connecting to. Each of these have different characteristics:

<a id="GEO">GEO (Geostationary)</a>

GEO (Geostationary)

Examples: KA-SAT (Viasat), KONNECT (Eutelsat), HYLAS-1 (Avanti)

Speeds: 10 – 100 Mbps

Latency: 600 – 800 ms

These double-decker-sized satellites orbit at about 35,786 kilometres above the equator and remain fixed relative to a point on Earth. This setup provides wide coverage per satellite but has higher latency due to the long distance the signals must travel.

<a id="MEO">MEO (Mid-Earth Orbit)</a>

MEO (Mid-Earth Orbit)

Examples: O3b (SES)

Speeds: 25 – 150 Mbps

Latency: 150 – 250 ms

These van-sized satellites operate at much closer altitudes ranging from 2,000 to 35,786 kilometres. They offer lower latency compared to GEO satellites, with somewhat more satellites needed for continuous coverage.

<a id="LEO">LEO (Low-Earth Orbit)</a>

LEO (Low-Earth Orbit)

Examples: Starlink (SpaceX), OneWeb

Speeds: 100 – 200+ Mbps

Latency: 20 – 60 ms

LEO satellites are the size of a Ford Fiesta and operate at altitudes between 160 to 2,000 kilometres. They provide the lowest latency and potentially high data rates but require a large constellation of satellites to ensure global coverage due to their close proximity to Earth and faster orbit speed.

Pros and cons of satellite internet

Satellite broadband is a new, unique technology that gives high-quality internet access to areas not reached by traditional broadband networks. On the other hand, it’s more expensive and can’t meet all business applications’ performance requirements.

Here’s the pros and cons in more detail:

Advantages of satellite internet

Wide coverage

Wide coverage

Satellite internet can reach rural and remote areas where traditional broadband services are unavailable. It’s an essential service for operations in locations too remote for other forms of internet access and opens up a wide range of new applications that will aid in the development of IoT applications.

Quick setup

Quick setup

Satellite internet doesn’t require extensive infrastructure such as cables or lines to be installed, nor does it require any engineering work. Typically, you sign up for the service through a satellite broadband provider, receive your satellite dish by post, set it up in a few minutes, and you’re ready to go.

Performant broadband

Performant broadband

With advancements in satellite technology, particularly the advent of Low-Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites, the speeds and general performance offered by satellite internet services have dramatically improved. Some services like Starlink are now on par with or faster than 5G and fibre-optic broadband.

Disadvantages of satellite broadband



Satellite internet has inherently higher latency than terrestrial broadband due to the long distance that signals must travel from the Earth to the satellite and back.

We cover this in more detail in our performance section.

Weather and obstructions

Weather and obstructions

Just like 5G and other wireless networks, the quality of the satellite connection can be affected by weather conditions or obstructions both at the user’s location and at the ground station.

Heavy rain, snow, dense cloud cover, tall trees, buildings, or even aeroplanes can interrupt the signal, leading to degraded performance.

Data caps

Data caps

All satellite internet plans come with data usage limits (caps), some of which can be restrictive. This can be a limitation for internet-heavy businesses with high data consumption needs, such as those frequently working with cloud storage or perpetually video conferencing.

NAT-based IPs

NAT-based IPs

Some satellite broadband providers use NAT-based IPs, which assign a single address to multiple devices. This can make it problematic for applications like VPNs and VoIP, which require each connected device to have its own IP.



Satellite internet is generally more expensive than other types of broadband, both in terms of monthly service fees and the initial cost for equipment (satellite dish and modem). The higher price point reflects the technological and operational costs of providing service via satellite.

Limited offer

Limited offer

Over twenty broadband providers are offering traditional broadband solutions for businesses. However, there are only a handful of satellite business broadband providers, which include operators and third-party re-sellers. The market is still in its infancy and needs to be battle-tested.

What sectors can benefit from satellite broadband?

Satellite broadband is a disruptive technology that provides new opportunities for all business sectors. Here is how satellite broadband can disrupt different business sectors:

Business ActivityDescription
Remote opsBusinesses operating in remote or rural locations, such as farming and mining, benefit from satellite broadband for real-time data exchange, monitoring, and management.
Maritime and aviationEnables reliable communication and internet access for ships and aircraft, supporting navigation, safety, and passenger connectivity.
Disaster recoveryProvides a resilient communication link that can be quickly deployed in emergency situations, ensuring business continuity.
Energy sectorSupports operations in offshore oil rigs, wind farms, and remote energy production sites with data communication for monitoring and control.
ConstructionAllows for internet access at construction sites in remote areas for project management, coordination, and access to cloud-based tools.
TourismEnables internet connectivity for tourist destinations, campsites, and leisure facilities in remote locations, improving guest services and operations.
EventsProvides temporary internet access for outdoor events, festivals, and conferences, supporting ticketing, payments, and social media engagement.
Retail and PoSSatellite broadband supports Point of Sale (POS) systems and inventory management for retail businesses in remote areas.
Telehealth ServicesEnables remote consultations, patient monitoring, and access to medical records for healthcare providers in underserved areas.
EducationOffers access to online learning resources, virtual classrooms, and educational content for schools and training centers in remote locations.
Environmental monitoringFacilitates the collection and transmission of environmental data from remote sensors and stations for research and conservation efforts.
Media and broadcastingSupports live broadcasting and news gathering in remote locations, ensuring timely and wide coverage.
Security and surveillanceProvides connectivity for remote surveillance systems, enabling real-time monitoring and alerts for security purposes.
Logistics and transportationSatellite broadband allows for tracking and management of vehicles and shipments in areas lacking cellular coverage.
Financial servicesEnables banking and financial transactions in remote areas, supporting branchless banking and financial inclusion.

The satellite business broadband market

In the satellite business broadband market, operators like Starlink, OneWeb, and Eutelsat have the choice of offering their services directly to businesses or through partnerships with third-party providers like Relialink and FreedomSat.

These partnerships allow them to offer specialised services, such as hybrid 5G and satellite broadband solutions, and expand their market reach.

💡 Distinct operation: This setup differs from traditional tethered broadband, where infrastructure operators such as Openreach and KCOM lease access to their networks to business broadband providers, who, in turn, offer customer service and network access to the end-users.

Business satellite broadband costs

The cost of business satellite broadband is typically composed of the following:

  • Service fee (what you pay for your internet service, typically monthly)
  • Hardware purchase or rental (satellite dish, modem, router).
  • Activation or installation fee.
  • Any add-ons or premiums paid to a third-party provider.

Service fee

The most basic GEO satellite broadband service can start at as little as £24.99 with Bigblu, while a premium LEO plan from Starlink could cost your business up to £360 per month. The cost will depend on the satellite network being used, data and speed limits.

For example, Starlink’s service costs depend entirely on your business’s data requirements, with broadband speed remaining fixed for all plans:

Service TypeCost
40 GB limit£96 per month
1TB limit£180 per month
2TB limit£360 per month
Other Charges£200 single time activation charge per connection

Hardware purchase/rental

A satellite dish and a modem are core requirements of any satellite broadband deal. Some providers will charge a monthly fee for rental, while others will let you outright purchase it. Here’s the cost for purchase or rental for their hardware:

Hardware TypeHigh-performanceStandard
Use CaseMore resilient, can connect to more satellites, and higher bandwidthDesigned for non-critical uses or small businesses
Purchase Cost£2,470£570
Rental CostN/A£100 per month

Activation/installation fee

Most providers will ask for a one-time activation fee to capitalise on the onboarding of new users or pay their customer acquisition costs.

Typically, businesses receive the hardware by post and do the installation themselves, but others with custom requirements or who simply want to guarantee a proper installation or meet insurance criteria will also pay for a one-time installation fee for an expert to come and do it.


Third-party providers typically offer add-ons like static IPs, flexible contracts, and insurance with their plans, which comes at an additional price.

Satellite business broadband providers

Unbeknownst to many, there are a handful of satellite business broadband providers in the UK, offering all types of services.

These are composed of both:

  • Satellite network operators (i.e. Starlink, OneWeb) selling their services directly to businesses and,
  • Third-party re-sellers who offer their own packages, including additional services such as custom installations, technical support, and bespoke business solutions.


Starlink (SpaceX) operates the densest constellation of LEO internet satellites, delivering the highest quality satellite internet service with the fastest speeds and lowest latencies.

It’s available for use in mainland UK and within its maritime borders. The hardware and service can be easily acquired through their website or indirectly through resellers like the Clarus Network or other third-party providers such as Relialink and FreedomSat.

Website: Starlink



ReliaLink is a third-party provider offering Eutelsat’s GEO services and Starlink’s LEO satellite business broadband services.

They wrap these services in both rolling monthly and 12-month contracts and offer additional services like static IPs and custom installations.

Website: ReliaLink broadband



FreedomSat offers satellite broadband services to UK businesses using KA-SAT and HYLAS 1 GEO satellites. They provide various ‘base’ and ‘premium’ plans with various data caps and speeds.

Speeds on offer are constrained by the technology and range from 25 to 50 Mbps download speeds with ‘soft’ data caps of 10 to 100 GB. These speeds are akin to those of FTTC or ADSL

Website: FreedomSat



Brdy provides satellite broadband services to UK businesses, utilising a diverse array of LEO and GEO satellite network operators, including Starlink, OneWeb, and Eutelsat.

They cater to businesses across various sectors, including retail, healthcare, mining, agriculture, broadcasting, and offshore energy. Their website features numerous case studies showcasing their extensive experience.

Website: Brdy



Bigblu is a third-party provider offering satellite broadband services to UK businesses using Eutelsat’s GEO satellite network.

They offer multiple packages, but you need to enquire to see what is available.

Website: Bigblu

BT Satellite Services

BT Satellite Services

BT’s satellite network services cater to the needs of corporations and enterprises in remote and challenging locations within the UK and have a direct partnership with OneWeb for LEO and Eutelsat for GEO satellite broadband services.

Their primary advantage is their ability to integrate seamlessly with other BT business broadband services and their existing multi-national BT Group business relationships.

Website: BT Satellite Network Services



OneWeb is an honourary mention to this list as they primarily offer their services through partnerships with other third-party providers rather than selling directly to end-users.

They stand as the sole competitor to Starlink in providing LEO satellite internet services and offer the best service at higher latitudes.

Performance of satellite broadband

Speed and latency

The speeds of satellite broadband vary depending on the satellite network in use, with those in lower orbits able to support higher speeds comparable to fibre broadband.

Satellite internet has higher latency than traditional broadband due to the long distance that signals must travel from the Earth to the satellite and back.

Here is a list of the typical speeds and latencies of various internet satellite networks currently serving the UK:

Satellite NetworkTypeDownload Speeds (Mbps)Latency (ms)Operating since
Avanti HYLASGEO10500 - 8002010
Viasat KA-SATGEO<50600 - 8002011
Eutelsat KONNECT VHTSGEO<100600 - 7002023
Viasat-3 (Coming Soon)GEO<100<800Expected 2024-25

Speeds and latencies compared to traditional broadband

Satellite internet has higher latency than traditional broadband due to the long distance that signals must travel from the Earth to the satellite and back.

This is especially true with GEO satellite broadband where signals must travel at least 70,000km before reaching their destination.

However, the new generation of LEO satellites, which orbit the closest to Earth, have low enough latencies for contemporary internet uses like video conferencing and VoIP calls.

The table below shows how speeds and latencies compare to traditional broadband technologies:

TechnologyTypical speeds (Mbps)Typical latency (ms)Source
Full fibre
70 - 1000+5 - 10msISPreview
30 - 7010 - 15msISPreview
Cable (Virgin)
100 - 1000+10 - 20msISPreview
10 - 2020 - 30msISPreview
50 - 10005 - 70msBBH
4G10 - 5030-50msBBH
LEO satellites (Starlink, OneWeb)<40020-70msOneWeb
GEO satellites<100500-1000msOneWeb

Satellite broadband customer support

Each satellite broadband provider has different levels of customer support. Third-party providers offer extra support for those who prefer speaking to a human. Direct support from network operators/providers like Starlink is comprehensive but relies on automation.

Third-party provider support

FreedomSat has its own online portal offering billing, usage monitoring and easy data purchase. Relialink offers phone and e-mail support in addition to the satellite network’s own support network.

Support from network operators

Starlink’s support relies heavily on its website’s comprehensive support section. It also lets users use their proprietary app, which provides intuitive performance monitoring, data use, and account and billing information.

While the support is impressive, it’s predominantly automated.

How private is satellite broadband?

Privacy in this context refers to the ability of users to browse the internet without allowing a third party, like an unwanted person, company, or government, to know the nature of this data. Here are three layers of privacy for satellite broadband connections:

Operator privacy

The privacy guarantees of satellite operators depend on the privacy laws of the country they operate in and the operator’s honesty.

Network privacy

The data itself is encrypted and secured during its entire journey to space and back using state-of-the-art encryption and security protocols.

However, the inherent nature of satellite transmission means signals travel long distances, potentially increasing exposure to interception.

Businesses who are worried about this can add another layer of privacy using a VPN service.

Online services privacy

A business’s privacy also depends on the tools that they utilise. Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, OpenAI, etc, all have some access to aspects of your data. This is outside the scope of satellite broadband but is an often overlooked aspect of people’s privacy concerns.

How can my business get satellite broadband?

See our list of satellite business broadband providers and contact them.

As this is a nascent market, we’re still in the process of setting up our satellite business broadband comparison service so we currently cannot provide this.

In the meantime, you can compare business broadband deals to get the best deal on traditional broadband.

Satellite broadband sacalability

Satellite broadband offers scalability that is suitable for growing businesses, even for those without access to fibre or 5G broadband. Here are three ways in which it can match even the fastest growing companies:

Improving infrastructure

Improving infrastructure

Satellite networks are growing and improving. Existing LEO networks like Starlink and OneWeb are continuously launching new units into orbit, while Eutelsat and ViaSat networks are gradually upgrading into more capable high-orbit satellite fleets.

Upgradable packages

Upgradable packages

Satellite broadband deals come in a range of tiers. As your business internet needs grow, you can move into a higher tier with faster speed limits and a higher data cap.

Also, your business can segment its internet usage and use a different satellite network for each. For example, backing up non-critical data onto cloud storage can be done using a slower GEO network to release the burden on the main LEO connection.

Growing fibre and 5G networks

Growing fibre and 5G networks

Fibre and 5G broadband networks are constantly expanding and will likely reach 99.9% of business properties in the future. Therefore, your business broadband plan could be to use satellite broadband until these become available.

Satellite business broadband – FAQs

Our business broadband experts answer commonly asked questions on satellite business broadband in the UK.

How do I install satellite business broadband?

Most companies will receive their satellite dishes and any other required equipment, such as a modem and business broadband router, through the post, accompanied by instructions on installing them, making it a DIY task in most cases.

However, some third-party providers offer custom installations, so your business can outsource this task. Alternatively, companies like Spacelink Installations specialise in providing professional installation services.

What’s the difference between satellite broadband and 5G broadband?

While both satellite and 5G broadband are wireless technologies, they are delivered through different means. Satellite broadband is provided via satellites in orbit, whereas 5G (along with other mobile broadband technologies like 4G, 3G, and LTE) is delivered through terrestrial cellular antennas.

5G offers faster speeds and lower latency but is only available within proximity to these antennas. In contrast, satellite broadband, though slower and with higher latency, offers ubiquitous coverage, making it accessible from virtually anywhere.

See this comparison between 5G vs fibre broadband to compare these two technologies.