I bought a Linksys CIT300 phone that's supposed to work with Skype at my
cabin. I have Wild Blue satellite service. I can't get the phone to work
with Skype. I've read the manuals, and Skype sent me a list of things to
do, which I did.
First I got garbled sound, now nothing. I'm about ready to chuck this, but
I have heard of others having good luck with it. It is the last resort for
phone service at our cabin. Other than that, we have to drive three miles
to the mountaintop to use the cell.
Help would be appreciated.
Satellite service is generally not recommended for Skype, or any other
real-time network systems (like online games, webcam chat, etc). I've
got Wildblue also, and while the download speeds are acceptable when
compared to dialup, the ping response time (how long it takes for a
single packet to get to it's destination and then back again) is
Satellite round trip delay tends to hose anything "real time" like
voice, video, VPN, etc. If you have a high speed connection at another
location with access to a land line, you *might* have better luck
operating your own VoIP bridge so you have control of both ends and can
set longer timeouts, etc. Not a particularly simple project.
Yes and no. They have the same round trip delay to contend with, but
they are designed to deal with the delays so the audio data stream
doesn't break up. You still have a noticeable delay between the time you
finish saying something and the time the other person hears it, responds
and that audio gets to you. The problem with the skype stuff is that
it's not designed to handle the long delay so it has errors and the
audio breaks up.
How about the info this time...
I have a report from a reliable source that Vonage VoIP service does
work over Hughes satellite Internet service, but with significant delays
of 1-2 seconds. The person went back to land line for voice, so it's not
useable for routine communication, but potentially ok for remote cabin
Don't you also have to pay for bandwidth with your satellite service? If
so, I would not use Skype or any other VoIP service for that matter. Skype
is even worse than others because your bandwidth will also be used by
other people since it's a peer-to-peer service, meaning everyone shares.
It would be fine if you had a broadband connection with free bandwidth but
on a satellite Internet bandwidth charges could be steep.
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Charges to a non Skype user to call you, or you to call them are $.021 per
minute, which converts to two cents a minute. As per bandwidth, we are not
there long enough or often enough to approach the limitations. If one does
get close, they just slow you down until you catch up with the quota. This
is the last ditch resort to get some type of phone service at the cabin
without getting an incredibly expensive satellite phone.
In order to use a cell, I have to drive about three miles up the mountain to
a viewpoint. This is the common practice, but inconvenient at
times.......... snowy, rainy, middle of the night ...... Plus, if it were
an emergency situation, I might have trouble getting there to call in. A
couple of my neighbors have strong cell phones and service, and claim that
if they hang out their top window on a particular side, theirs works. Mine
won't where I am. I am considering building a lookout tower out of
telephone poles, but wouldn't know if it works from up there until after all
the hard work.
Pete: Puhleeze. I don't want my wife to know that you can RENT
scaffolding. She'll be having me do all sorts of work. I want to build a
observation tower out of telephone poles. For now, I'd just mount it on the
peak of the second floor of the cabin, about as good as all the effort to
put it on a pole.
I did some changes according to the things Skype sent me. I DID get it to
work on the test call to London from my lowland house, and it uses a dish
satellite for Internet service. It's just a DIFFERENT dish ISP service than
the one at the cabin.
We are driving to the cabin this afternoon for a couple of reasons, and I'm
going to test the unit up there now that I know it is at least working.
I worked on offshore platforms in the 70's. We had radio phones, and you
had to say "over" when you were through. Two people could not talk at one
time. If there is a latency problem, I can live with it for the purposes of
having a marginally working phone in the remote location. I'll post more on
this after the trip to the cabin, and after we get back in Las Vegas
I did get the post about the cell phone antenna, and that's a thought.
Looking for a cell amp right now, and trying to find a price. We may have
another tower we can get that right now is too far. Problem is, the tower
that is closest to us is on the other side of the mountain, and the waves
Thanks for the help, everyone. We'll see how this works out.
I own my scaffolding, damn useful stuff for all kinds of stuff. Right
now I have an 18' tower setup for practicing my vertical rope skills (or
lack thereof) for caving. Of course I don't have a wife problem.
What kind of height do you think you'd need to get a cell antenna to?
You could buy or build a nice little crank up tower that would be safely
down and less of a lightning target when not in use.
Sounds like progress. No reason it can't work as long as you can make
the necessary adjustments so it will tolerate the latency.
Get a nice helium balloon, a long kite string and some binoculars. Hang
your cell phone from the balloon aimed so the signal display points
down. Send it up, watch the signal with the binoculars and mark the
string when the signal is good. Bring back down and measure the string
to see just how high a tower you need. :)
Yep, for the application the delays shouldn't be a big deal.
Didn't look at that particular link, but I know there are some decent
quality cell repeater systems designed to get coverage into big
buildings. One of those with an antenna on a suitable tall tower / mast
would get you and any guests "normal" cell coverage in the cabin.
Shoot. Went to the cabin today, and the Skype wouldn't work. It would work
down here in the lowland, but not up there on the dish.
Tomorrow we go to Vegas for a few days, and if I have the time, I have to
call Linksys and see if it's in their phone, or IF I can reach a human at
Skype, if it's something there.
Getting frustrating, but have to keep trying until I get it working or know
why it won't.
I also have a cabin, but not as remote as your's appears to be.
Couldn't get cell phones to work because of hills (not mountains)
between cabin and cell phone towers. Bought the cell phone antenna
mentioned by another poster. Still couldn't get it to work with any
regularity. Spent a LOT of time rotating the antenna for best
reception, only to find that what worked today wouldn't work tomorrow.
Even constructed a reflector behind the antenna to try to concentrate
the signal. No improvement. Finally decided the antenna needed a clear
line-of-sight to the tower and I couldn't get that because of hills &
trees. So I gave up and the thing is still on the pole used as a bird
roost only. I bit the bullet had a very long land line run to the
You might try an auxiliary antenna. I fastened my old Wilson truck
driver-type to a length of PVC, fastened that to the house, ran the
cable in through a crawlspace vent and into the dining room via a HVAC
duct and improved my reception to an acceptable level. But I had
*some* reception, however poor.
You can pick up the antenna at any major truck stop chain, they have
acceptable return policies.
Of course about a month later a new tower came online...
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