Reliable internet s...
 

Reliable internet service on STX?  

 

tmahan
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July 20, 2017 12:36 pm  

Hi, my girlfriend and I are in the initial stages of exploring a move to the USVI, most likely STX. We are still three years away, but would like to begin pmv's with the first being this October. We both work for a large insurance company and are fortunate enough to telecommute 100% of the time. I have seen comments regarding the reliability of internet service on STT, but was wondering if anyone knew of the reliability of the service on STX or if anyone knows if others telecommute as well.

Any help is greatly appreciated!


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speee1dy
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July 20, 2017 1:40 pm  

we have broadband and viya on island. some places cant get broadband.

i have broadband and i like it


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vicanuck
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July 20, 2017 2:42 pm  

I have Broadband VI and rarely ever experience any problems. I'm very happy with them.


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East Ender
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July 20, 2017 9:39 pm  

I have some stateside friends in the insurance biz who telecommuted for several months last winter. They didn't report any difficulty. This was on St Thomas...


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Scubadoo
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July 21, 2017 2:03 am  

Reliability on STX generally seems good, probably better than WAPA. BBVI uses directional antennas pointed at towers on the hill while Viya uses cable. For business critical go with redundant service.


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rotorhead
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July 21, 2017 3:12 am  

I use Broadband VI. It has been very reliable lately. I used to have Innovative DSL(pre viya) but dropped it after Hurricane Omar when our landline service was interrupted for 4 months.

I have an AT&T Unite Pro on a GoPhone account for backup. If I lose service or am traveling I just activate the GoPhone account and have service wherever I go. I bought the Unite Pro on EBay for $28 plus $5 for the SIM card. It doesn't cost anything unless I activate it. A cheap backup and the bandwidth through the Unite Pro often hits 40 Mbps.

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AandA2VI
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July 21, 2017 4:55 am  

I have viya. It's pretty good. I'm a website designer. The PROBLEM is power!! If you have a generator you'll rarely be without internet. I'm literally without power right now. I do have a generator but it's late and not worth being noisy. I also have a batter back up that gives me about two hours of internet once power is off. Very annoying but fairly reliable. In two years of viya I had one outage for a week (recent) but it was a entire treed that grew around the lines. They finally came out and replaced ALL the lines. No problems since. I also live in the rainforest so it's WAY overgrown.

*** The views and opinions expressed in my posts are soley those of A&A2VI and other like minded islanders. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the majority or any/all contributors to this site. Have a GREAT DAY!


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tmahan
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July 21, 2017 11:45 am  

Fantastic. Thanks for the feedback everyone. We will be renting at least for the first year, I may need to take my chances without a generator especially if we rent a condo. It sounds as though from the general consensus that the issue is not so much ISP issues, but electrical service.


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vicanuck
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July 21, 2017 1:44 pm  

You could live without a generator for the first while. But, once you put down roots, you'll want one.


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AandA2VI
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July 21, 2017 2:13 pm  

If your business depends on the internet you will need a generator. Period.

Don't condos usually have one for all the units? Isn't that why the condo feeez are so high (among others).

FWIW power went off about 2am this morning when I wrote that - JUST came back on - it's 11am. 9 hour outages are not uncommon. Can your business survive with this possibly multiple times a week? I will say it's really only this bad in hurricane season. The rest of the year it's maybe once or twice a month for shorter periods. Don't live on feeder 10 B. I NEVER had this many problems in STT.

*** The views and opinions expressed in my posts are soley those of A&A2VI and other like minded islanders. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the majority or any/all contributors to this site. Have a GREAT DAY!


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tmahan
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July 21, 2017 2:28 pm  

Wow, good to know. I am glad to get honest feedback. I will definitely need to take the extra steps to be prepared for pmv's and beyond.


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Scubadoo
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July 21, 2017 3:39 pm  

Some condos have complex wide generators, certainly not all. A few have generators for individual units. In any case condo HOA fees pay for everything common outside your walls. All building repair and maintenance, grounds keeping, pool, maybe TV and/or internet in some cases, insurance for everything outside your walls, staff salaries to do all that work. Fees vary widely depending on what's needed for each complex.


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vicanuck
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July 21, 2017 3:59 pm  

You can by a portable gas generator very inexpensively that will keep your fridge and a few other things going while the power is out. We bought one when we first moved here but rarely used it. I sold if for what I bought it for several years later after we got a whole home diesel.


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speee1dy
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July 21, 2017 4:45 pm  

when we lived in mill harbor they did not. and the condo fees were about 1000- 1200 a month

If your business depends on the internet you will need a generator. Period.

Don't condos usually have one for all the units? Isn't that why the condo feeez are so high (among others).

FWIW power went off about 2am this morning when I wrote that - JUST came back on - it's 11am. 9 hour outages are not uncommon. Can your business survive with this possibly multiple times a week? I will say it's really only this bad in hurricane season. The rest of the year it's maybe once or twice a month for shorter periods. Don't live on feeder 10 B. I NEVER had this many problems in STT.


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tmahan
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July 21, 2017 5:10 pm  

Seems to me, and please correct me if I am wrong...for someone like myself who will be working 100% out of their home/condo, the best bet is to at least rent a place with solar panels, and a good generator.
My plan as stated earlier is to make 3 pmv's. I will be looking to sublet a place in both STT and STX over the next two years. I am going to STJ in 10/2017 and will take a good hard look there, but feel STJ will most likely be out of my price range long term. We have a budget of preferably under $2k per month. I do not want to purchase a property until we are absolutely sure we will stay long term.
Once in the VI long term, I will definitely work with a realtor in an effort to find a place with solar panels and a generator.
I lived on Maui approximately 25 years ago and the same concerns there, high cost of electricity, food, goods, etc. are very similar to what I am hearing from residents on this forum.


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islandjoan
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July 21, 2017 5:53 pm  

If you are thinking of renting at a particular condo complex, ask the realtor and/or condo manager of the complex has a generator. Quest Verde has one, I think Coakley Bay does and maybe Gentle Winds. Another way to find out ahead of time is to check the MLS listings for the condos. Usually the listings will indicate if there is a generator. Chris Hanley's website has an easy to use MLS listing and so does Coldwell Banker.


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vicanuck
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July 21, 2017 7:20 pm  

the best bet is to at least rent a place with solar panels, and a good generator.

I'm sure rentals with solar panels and generator are out there, but, I've never seen one.

If I had to rent my house out (which has solar panels), I'd put an internal meter in and charge for the electricity the tenant used.

Those solar panels weren't free...just sayin'


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Exit Zero
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July 22, 2017 2:34 am  

Hi, my girlfriend and I are in the initial stages of exploring a move to the USVI, most likely STX. We are still three years away,

Any help is greatly appreciated!

You are getting the current situation from the forum -- looking 3 years out?? -- that could be anything here -- look 3 years back from now and the progress is quite noticeable,


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AandA2VI
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July 22, 2017 2:39 am  

Jesus thats expensive for condo fees!!! WHY would anyone pay that much and then rent on top that to live - wall to wall with people??? Whats the draw? I never have wanted to love in a condo - especially after living in AZ where the houses are 10 ft apart... thats close enough!

*** The views and opinions expressed in my posts are soley those of A&A2VI and other like minded islanders. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the majority or any/all contributors to this site. Have a GREAT DAY!


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East Ender
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July 22, 2017 1:13 pm  

There are many reasons people choose condo living: someone else does maintenance, you can have amenities you might not be able to afford on your own, better security, etc. Condo fees are very high here mostly because of insurance issues, both windstorm and earthquake. Of course, there are compromises one makes, but that is true for all living arrangements. 😉


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Scubadoo
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July 22, 2017 3:12 pm  

Jesus thats expensive for condo fees!!! WHY would anyone pay that much and then rent on top that to live - wall to wall with people??? Whats the draw? I never have wanted to love in a condo - especially after living in AZ where the houses are 10 ft apart... thats close enough!

I doubt condo renters are paying the HOA fees. All HOA fees (which may include water, internet, cable, special assessments) are the legal responsibility of the owner regardless of any renting. The owner takes the HOA fees out of the rent. Market pricing prevails, the owner may be only breaking even or not even after HOA fees and possibly mortgage payment. Condo owners me be doing short term vacation rentals in between their own use, may be renting out the unit long term until future date when they plan to move in or move back in, or may be renting out long term until ready to sell. Or may be renting the unit while it's for sale. When we bought our condo the renters had 60 days notice to move out per their lease with the prior owners.

Our condo complex is very quiet and not very busy. Condo HOA rules are typically very strict on noise and activity and they are enforced. Probably more so than single family home HOAs or apartment living. As East Ender said there are pros and cons and many valid personal reasons for condo living, even for renters.


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cwc__
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May 3, 2019 12:02 pm  

TMahan, did you ever come up with a working solution? I work in software and am interested in spending 1-2 months this winter in St Croix. (It took me a bit of research to discover that PMV stands for "pre-move visit".) I'm visiting STX now, scouting for spending some time here this winter. For work I need to do calls internal to my company, including with my CEO, and client calls with high quality audio, high resolution screen sharing, etc.  My company is fine with it so long as they don't notice any difference from when I'm in the SF Bay Area or Denver.

The service that people refer to as "broadband" ("Broadband VI") in Christiansted, which I am currently using, doesn't actually meet the FCC's definition, which is 25Mbps down/3Mpbs up. Mine is currently 3 down 3 up, sometimes a little slower.  It's ok for a week or two, but I wouldn't do it for more time. I would like something consistently more than 3 up, but low latency and high reliability is more important. 

Is there business-level service close to where the fiberoptic cable reaches land?

thanks


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Scubadoo
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May 3, 2019 11:15 pm  

Limited options.  VIYA has replaced all their infrastructure since Maria and people I know seem to be very satisfied.  VIYA also has  4G now. You probably want at least one backup for internet if you need high availability.  Then there is WAPA,   You can have solar and generator backup but I don't know what kind of backup VIYA or BBVI have.


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TN_Travelers
(@tn-travelers)
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May 5, 2019 9:56 am  

We have our Viya box and internet router plugged into a battery backup power supply.  During Thursday’s  WAPA problems, we never lost use of the internet.  Just make sure you get a big enough system to last at least 12 hours.


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vicanuck
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May 6, 2019 8:18 am  

BroadbandVI does have faster service levels. I have 25 up at my office. Its very fast and reliable. They can set you up with a custom config easily. Drop by their office and ask.


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