Rural Internet: Stuck in the Slow Zone

U.S.Image via WikipediaA Twitter & SL friend, Becky McCray (@beckymcray), founder of Small Biz Survival, just pointed me to a post on the 37 Signals blog called Rural Internet: Stuck in the Slow Zone.

I still haven’t had a chance to read all of the 159 comments, however, one person did mention Wild Blue as a satellite option. Well, I already checked into Wild Blue, and they don’t service Tok, much less Alaska – according to the rep with whom I spoke.

Then I was struck with this suggestion, and I must admit, it made me want to cry as much as laugh:

Further alternatives:
– Messenger pigeons
– Smoke signals
– Pony Express

I’ve already looked into satellite with Starband, however, after being on hold for 1/2 an hour then leaving a voicemail message, their sales reps have yet to call me back (3 days and counting).

Right now, I have one cellphone with Verizon service so I should call them next although technically they do not service Alaska and run over ACS Alaska towers which don’t work in Tok. I may have to transfer that number to another provider – that means, AP&T, the only local provider in the area as far as I can tell.

My other cellphone – my iPhone – is with AT&T – and one AT&T rep recently told me that yes, they not only service Tok Alaska but actually have a tower there so I could get connected to their Internet card package. More on that in another post.

In the meanwhile, I will scour the 159 messages on the 37 Signals blog post to see if I can find some obscure but effective way of accessing the Internet at a reasonable speed and for a reasonable price. I’m already resigned to the fact that I’m looking at about $200/month. But for only 10 Gigs allowance and 512k transfer speed, it still pains me.

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