Why do gas stations, and pharmacies have a satellite dish on top of them?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by TommyVercetti, Sep 12, 2003.

  1. TommyVercetti

    TommyVercetti Diamond Member

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    Why do gas stations and pharmacies like Eckerds and Walgreens have a satellite dish on top of them?

    I understand that it's part of their supply/sales network, and keeping up to date on the pricing and other data is very crucial, but I don't see how a satellite dish is helping them any. From what I know, a satellite dish can only recieve, not send. Is this true? Still, broadband has been out for many years now, why not just hook up all walgreens' stores with that?

    I am sure Walgreen's relies a lot on such a network, but why would a small gas station need to connected? What exactly are they doing that needs up to date data constantly?
     
  2. Turkish

    Turkish Lifer

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    probably something to do with JIT inventory... not sure though.....
     
  3. rudeguy

    rudeguy Lifer

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    its for the music they play over the speakers
     
  4. dman

    dman Diamond Member

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    Simple, but, I believe to be probably true. A dr.s office I go to has an old DTV System with access card hooked to the on-hold music system... I wonder how much they pay monthly for that.
     
  5. Nocturnal

    Nocturnal Lifer

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    This is true, if you ever visit a K-Mart or Walmart, or Walgreen etc and you were to have a friend at the same type of store as you but in another location, you'd hear that both stores are playing the same type of music.
     
  6. AgentBehemoth

    AgentBehemoth Senior member

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    It's called Muzak and it was started in the 1920's. Google it
     
  7. TekViper

    TekViper Senior member

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    its a brainwashing conspiracy of music distribution.
     
  8. dmcowen674

    dmcowen674 No Lifer

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    That's their Internet connection.

    See Radiant Systems Corp, Alpharetta Georgia.


     
  9. AgaBoogaBoo

    AgaBoogaBoo Lifer

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    Why do gas stations and pharmacies like Eckerds and Walgreens have a satellite dish on top of them?

    For Satellite television/Possibly Internet Connection
     
  10. Crazymofo

    Crazymofo Platinum Member

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    Sat dishes have been 2 way for awhile I believe just to expensive for the consumer market... so they could be 2 way dishes for data transfer. Of course we all know that you can get a two way dish for internet now but its still a large sum of money...
     
  11. Sluggo

    Sluggo Lifer

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    <Art Bell>

    Dude, its part of the radar network for the freekin black helicopters.

    I thought everyone knew that.

    </Art Bell>
     
  12. WTT0001

    WTT0001 Golden Member

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    Satellite has been 2-way for a while, and yes there is a consumer version (also known as DirecWay, runs either $600 for equipment + $60 a month or $99 down and $99 a month for the first year, $60 a month after that). Anyway, a lot of business' have them (a bit more expensive for them though, $1800 or so for the equipment and ? per month after that).

    Anyway, the condensed version : 2-way satellite for internet.

    WTT
     
  13. JT

    JT Member

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    A manager at a gas station once told me, that their dish was used for CC and Debit Card processing. The topic came up, when their POS terminal couldn't process any cards.
     
  14. ScottMac

    ScottMac Moderator<br>Networking<br>Elite member

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    DING DING DING! Winner. It's for credit card transactions. It is a two way dish.

    Walgreens has the/one of the largest satellite-based data networks in the country, theirs is for things like their prescription network and central transaction systems.

    Scott
     
  15. BurnItDwn

    BurnItDwn Lifer

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    Walgreens uses 2 way satellites.
    It does the muzac as well as all the network communications.
    (Examples: Store to Store communications, such as inventory transfers, access to the walgreens intranet, Also debit/credit/gift/phone card processing, Store to central communications, Both for the patient Databases, submitting claims to inserance companies, and for sending down new software loads .. etc)
    Some walgreens stores use frame relay, but about 95% are satellite only. (currently about 4200 stores and only a couple hundred on frame relay, and most of the frame relay stores have satellite backup.)

    The reason for this is that outages at other companies will NOT take down the walgreens network.
    Hovewer, the obvious downside to satellite bad weather near the IT center will take down the network (its just outside Chicago)
     
  16. Mill

    Mill Lifer

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    Yep, I was shocked that no one had mentioned that it was for CCs. Blockbuster had the same deal when I worked there.
     
  17. Apathetic

    Apathetic Platinum Member

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    They transmit their sales and inventory records. It can also be used for piping in music. Walmart uses them for the same things.

    Dave
     
  18. Eli

    Eli Super Moderator<br>Elite Member
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    Interesting ...

     
  19. Hayabusa Rider

    Hayabusa Rider Elite Member

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    All the above. The primary reason is for their computers to be able to reliably communicate with insurance companies. Since you have it, you might as well use it for other things. For gas stations, I would think for gas pump credit card transactions.
     
  20. dmcowen674

    dmcowen674 No Lifer

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    You guys didn't look up Radiant Systems from my post. Radiant does all of the POS (Point Of Sale) from the registers and CC (Credit Card) purchases over the 2 Way Satellite system. Also States that have the Lottery go over a Satellite Internet system too.
     
  21. moonshinemadness

    moonshinemadness Platinum Member

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    They arecommunications devices to ready the world for the alien invasion