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Considerations when choosing your plan

Data usage

It's important to understand what your usage patterns are in order to determine which Viasat plan is best for you.

Here are some examples of online activity and the typical amount of data used for each:

Data usage by application*


Video streaming 1-7 GB/hr The higher the resolution, the more data is used
Video conferencing 1 GB/hr The more participants, the more data is used
Audio-only cuts down on data use greatly
Music streaming 150 MB/hr Usage varies depending on service used
Social media 120 MB/hr Clicking on videos will consume more data
Web browsing 60 MB/hr Watch out for auto-play videos which can drive more data usage
Gaming 40-150 MB/hr Downloads can be very large and not all games work well over satellite
Internet of Things devices Varies Mostly low data usage, although online cameras can add up

*Figures are estimates only to show typical data usage by application. Individual data usage will vary.

Plans and video resolution

Some of our plans offer varying video resolution quality. 

There are many factors involved in determining what video resolution you need. 

To find the plan that’s best for you, you’ll want to consider your screen size, screen type, how much and what kind of data you plan to stream. 

Put simply --

  • Small screens look fine with lower resolution, and larger screens require a higher resolution to look good.
  • The higher the video resolution, the more data you need. The lower the resolution, the less data you need.

Here’s some more information to help you understand what’s involved:

The sharpness of your image depends on both the resolution and the size of your display screen. 

  • Screen resolution is expressed as the number of pixels your screen can display horizontally and ­vertically. For example, 1920 x 1080 pixels, or 1080p, is known as full high definition (HD).
  • Check the details of your plan to determine what video quality is available and take screen size, screen quality, as well as the quality of video you’re streaming into consideration when choosing your plan. 

Video resolution

Here are some examples of video streaming quality (resolution) that can help you decide which Viasat home internet service plan will work best for you:


360p Low-resolution video Best viewed on small screens such as phones or tablets (uses the least amount of data)
480p DVD-quality resolution video Best viewed on phones, tablets, laptops, and small-screen TVs
720p HD-ready resolution Looks good on most screen sizes
1080p Full-HD video resolution Looks good on even the largest screen sizes (including projectors)
4k Highest quality resolution For the biggest screens (uses the most data)

Understanding how the network is shared

Viasat's internet plans come with a monthly data allowance or other monthly usage threshold. Viasat's unlimited data plans that are available in some areas give you peace of mind in knowing that you never have to pay overages for data usage, but there are some data management policies that may be enforced after you use a specific amount of data each month. This could impact your internet speeds during times when the network is busy.

Depending on which unlimited data plan you’re on, after you use a certain amount of high-speed data, your data may be prioritized behind other customers during network congestion, which will result in slower speeds. Check the plans available in your area for exact monthly usage thresholds. Watch the video to learn more about how we manage network traffic to keep you connected.

To get the best experience, it’s important to select a plan best suited to your usage needs, and to learn how to manage your data usage.


Managing your data usage

We offer a variety of resources to help you manage your data usage for the best value and experience. These include Viasat Shield, My Viasat mobile app, and My Viasat web. Once you’re signed up, our Help Center will also be a great resource with tips for how to check and maximize your data usage.

Selecting the best plan for you

If you’re still not sure which plan is best for you, feel free to contact sales for help choosing one. Or sign up now — if it turns out your internet plan is not meeting your monthly usage needs on a frequent basis, you may be able to upgrade your plan to one that better suits your needs.

Ready to get connected with Viasat?

Find and compare our internet plans that are available in your area. See details about streaming speeds, data amounts, pricing, and more — and decide what plan is best for you.

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Want to learn more?

Have questions about Viasat satellite internet service? 

Explore our frequently asked questions (FAQ) page to find the answers you need.

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