How To Choose The Best Internet Service Provider? Things To Consider
In this techno-enabled world when the internet has become the most essential part of our life, searching for the best internet service provider in your area can be a knotty undertaking. From determining local availability, numerous plans, speed, routers to perplexed contract details, you’ve to wade through the most confusing state. And, you are more likely to end up making a wrong decision in all these goings.
However, if you don't want to call your internet provider multiple times over internet issues, you’ve reached the right place. We’ve dropped down the best way to choose the best internet service provider and things to consider that will lead your search to be successful. Get a coffee and scroll down to know the things to keep in mind when looking for an internet service provider. So, let's start.
Wait, do you know the types of internet service? If not, continue reading to know.
Types of Internet Service: What Would You Prefer?
Of course, you would have to start with knowing the difference between the types of internet services available in your area. “Broadband” is a common term used to define all of the always-on types of internet services; cable, satellite, DSL, Fiber optic service (a.k.a FiOS and also popular among all). These are some of the most common high-speed internet services that keep you constantly connected to the outer world. Here’s our summary of the different types of internet services available to consumers.
1. Cable Broadband
It is the most common internet type that has been offered by your Cable TV provider. Cable internet operates over coaxial cable TV wires and provides downloading speeds ranging from 3Mbps to over 100 Mbps. Here are common pros & cons.
Pros: It doesn’t require a phone line, which means you always have a ready connection. This is really useful as it cuts down dial-up fees and stays connected to the internet all the time.
Cons: It doesn’t provide speed as fast as the fiber-optic internet, and the number of people using the same connection in your area also determines your speed. Your connection speed may interrupt during peak hours.
2. Satellite Internet
The best part about considering paying for a satellite internet connection is that it is available in all the areas of the USA. This is perhaps the main reason why everyone goes for it in the United States. Regardless of your doings, it constantly offers up to 15 Mbps down and 3Mpbs up, according to a report by Ars Technica.
Pros: It is available nearly everywhere, provides high-speed and far better & cost-effective when compared to mobile hotspots and other types of internet services.
Cons: The weather determines and affects the signal path, which means you won’t get high-speed during rainy & cloudy seasons. Also, poor latency or high ping is common which eventually may increase the communication time between devices.
It (DSL) stands for Digital Subscriber Line, which operates over regular phone lines similar to dial-up and delivers downloading speed as fast as 25 Mbps. There are two types of DSL internet services; Asymmetric DSL (ADSL) and Symmetric DSL (SDSL). Though ADSL is cheaper when compared to SDSL and provides faster downloading speed.
Pros: It is reliable and fast when speed compared to other high-speed internet services. Also, there is no cap on data limit and no additional phone service is required with DSL, which enables you to cut the cord.
Cons: Requires a line of sight connection with the access point and you may need to access 10 miles of the access point, which may enhance cost sometimes. Fixed wireless internet may be more expensive than DSL others.
4. Fiber Optic Internet Service FiOS
One of the most popular types of internet services, Fiber Optic internet service is the latest one, which operates over an optical network that uses light. Yes, no wonder in knowing that fiber internet wire is made of pure glass and can be as thin as a human hair. As of now, Verizon, AT&T, U-verse and other leading telecom companies in the USA are major fiber optic providers in the USA that are offering speeds as high as 300 Mbps down and 65 Mbps up which is far better than everyone above.
Pros: Offers the fastest speed (at the speed of light), compared to traditional copper wire connection such as DSL or cable internet services. Also, prevents your home from becoming an internet integration chamber.
Cons: Compared to others, such as Cable and DSL, fiber internet service is expensive and also has physical limits. Once the fiber optic cables are bent, it will no longer be functional, which means another cost on your head.
Of course, that isn't all. Beyond just internet connection types, there are lots of things to keep in mind before finalizing an internet service provider. Here’s how to choose the best internet service provider, if you’ve decided your type of internet service.
1. Find Internet Provider in Your Area
Once you know the internet type you need and also you can visit websites like “Broadband Now” and “In My Area” to find the best internet provider in your area based on the reviews dropped by the customers as well.
There are lots of websites providing best suggestions on the basis of your search and you can set filters as well. Also, you can use your friends and local internet users to know the best and most reliable internet service provider.
2. Downloading and Uploading Speed Test
Of course, everybody wants to experience the fastest internet at the price they’re willing to pay. However, there are several factors that may affect your internet speed, which makes it vital to test downloading and uploading speed at the first. To find the ISPs with the fastest uploading & downloading speed actually tested by users around the world, you can visit Speedtest’s Net Index. It shows the data collected from actual user’s data from different areas of the world. You can click to drill down to your area to find actual internet speed instantly.
3. Cost and Contract
Each internet provider company has its own terms & conditions and plans as well. Some companies allow users to rent the modem or router or ask to buy it themselves. Also, some companies provide free installation to build a customer base while others charge you for installation as well. Most providers will also provide additional discount if you’ve been a regular user or have TV, Mobile connection from the same. Also, you need to check for the rate of increment if the bundle expires. If you are looking for long-term internet service, it’s better for you to avoid a multi-year contract because the provider may play with the speed or any other provider that starts offering better services compared to your plan.
4. Terms of Services
Notably, make sure you know the limitations of your plan & services. There may be data caps, for example, you cannot use more than 50 or less GB data in one month or restrictions on the kind of activities.
5. Customer Support
If you have had a bad experience, better check for the customer support at the first glance. Does the provider offer phone, email, or chat customer support? You can also ask the neighbours and existing users to check if the provider is good at providing support or not.
These are the major things to keep in your mind when looking for an internet service in your area. Also, you can consider negotiation, but for this you will have to go after Cable Internet connection from the same provider you've been availing Cable TV services. He is more likely to grant additional discounts and provide a better plan. So, go ahead and good luck with your choice!
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