Below is the list of questions which are being frequently asked by
various customers. We hope that we have covered pretty much of all the
questions which may raise when you are new to satellite communications.
Q: How do I pay your service?
A: When ordering, you will need to pay for the equipment, delivery and installation services if you have ordered the same; as well as 3 months of Internet access service. The subsequent service months are paid quarterly in advance.
Q: What is the payment method you accept?
A: We normally accept a wire transfer payment, however you can also pay
via your credit card. Our processor charges a 5.5% commission for all
credit card orders, thus it's a bit more expensive if you go that way,
however such possibility is open.
Q: Are there any other fees beyond equipment, delivery, service and installation?
A: No, there are no other fees. Everything is already included.
Q: How soon do I get the service?
A: Upon our standard terms and conditions, we reserve up to 35 business days to deliver equipment and activate your iDirect, if you have ordered our installation service. If you are installing the system yourself then it may take some additional time since it depends on how fast you will install the system. At the same time we apply all the best efforts to deliver and activate as fast as possible and usually the total lead time averages to 2-3 business weeks since payment reception.
Q: Do I need a special government permit to use your service in my country?
A: Usually no, however some countries in Africa require you to obtain a VSAT equipment import and VSAT utilization permit from local governmental authorities before purchasing the system. Please contact your local Ministry of Telecommunications in order to obtain more details on how to import and use the VSAT system in your country.
Q: How difficult it is to install the system myself?
A: Installation is pretty simple if you have basic experience with networking (can ping and telnet) and aligning satellite dishes. You can refer to Technical Support section of our site, Related Downloads section - iDirect Installation Manual PDF Brochure to get acquainted with installation process. Note that installing the antenna and finding the satellite without previous experience can sometimes be a tricky task because even half a degree of misalignment can lead that you see no signal.
Q: What do I need to install the system?
A: You will need a PC with Ethernet card, compass, GPS unit (could be a Thuraya satellite phone) and the satellite signal meter. Optionally you can use satellite TV tuner to align to the satellite. BNL technical support will provide you with assistance to get the system up and running by phone, e-mail or Instant Messenger. If you have ordered our installation services, you will just need to wait 2 hours till our engineer gets it done.
Q: Is the bandwidth dedicated or shared? What is the contention you use on your system?
A: iDirect provides both dedicated and shared bandwidth at the same time so you can use both broadband Internet access, VoIP and videoconferencing services. This yields a pretty good performance service with competitive prices.
Q: Is the traffic really unlimited? Can I download as much as I want?
A: Yes, it is an unlimited traffic system with no monthly download limits.
Q: Is there something like a FAP (Fair Access Policy)?
A: No, the service comes with no FAP although we limit the speed and recommend an upgraded (and more expensive) service to customers which use their system for continous downloading of large multimedia files like 600 Megabyte movie discs or use P2P applications generating thousands of TCP sessions. This is done in order to maintain a good quality of the service for everyone. Usually, there is very little percentage of people abusing the service, so if you are not intending to leave your system on during 24h to download the whole Internet or use P2P you are safe from being limited in speed.
Q: Can I use webcams and VoIP with your service?
A: Yes, with guaranteed quality on iDirect.
Q: Do you offer any warranty on the equipment?
A: Yes, all the equipment comes with 12 month immediate spare parts replacement warranty.
Q: How do I share Internet to other computers in the network?
A: You will need an external NAT appliance such as firewall router or a PC running NAT gateway software (e.g. BusinessCom Traffic Engineering Server). You will need a standard Ethernet hub or switch as well which is available in any computer shop. This is pretty much covered in the Installation Manual.
Q: Can I upgrade my service package if I will add more computers to the network?
A: Yes you can upgrade your service package any time.
Please note that if your question is not listed here, you can always contact BNL Africa.
We would be glad to answer all the questions you may have!