"Options are there, at slower speeds with other providers."

"For those who demand truly fast two-way internet access - that is, speeds at least 10 or 20 times as fast as standard dial-up service - DSL is the only option on Bainbridge Island. And Qwest is the principal provider, at least if you want to choose your own Internet service provider.For those who are willing to ease those requirements, other options are available, including the following:* Satellite service. Present satellite technology allows the user to receive high-speed internet. Transmissions must still be by dial-up telephone access, although the satellite providers claim that two-way satellite transmission will be available within months. The service is available through a number of satellite television providers, and through America On-Line.The cost is relatively low - satellite-dish installation for as little as $250, and a monthly fee of as little as $40, plus the cost of dial-up internet service for data transmission.The limiting factor is the need for line-of-site access to a satellite, which generally means an unobstructed view to the south or southeast from some point on the customer's property.Reliability is a matter of some debate. David Ainsley, a north-end web editor who works for a company in London, said the service does have momentary interruptions, but is fine for somebody who doesn't need 24/7 capacity. But Northwest Network Services' president Bob Malecki says he has customers who are coming back to dial-up service after experiencing reliability problems with satellite.* Semi-fast service. A class of service called ISDN offers two-way speeds 2-3 times that of dial-up service, and is available throughout the island. That technology has attracted a limited following, because it is significantly more expensive than dial-up service, leading many to question whether the gains in speed outweigh cost.* At least one third-party provider, Covad, still offers service on the island, contrary to earlier reports. But the service is offered only through Speakeasy, a Seattle-based Internet service provider.According to Speakeasy representative Kat Oak, the Covad/Speakeasy alliance is subject to essentially the same limitations as Qwest. Medium-fast ISDN service is offered island-wide, while DSL speeds are available only within the same three-mile ring around the Qwest station on Madison Avenue, inside which Qwest itself offers DSL service. "

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