The United States is ranked ninth in the world for average internet speed, with our average clocking in at around 150 Mbps. Yet many of us don’t have internet speeds that are anything like that fast.
How can you get better internet? It may be as simple as switching internet service providers. In this guide, we’re going to take a look at how you can find the best internet service provider in your area.
Are you ready to find out more about how to get the best internet possible? Then read on!
- Do They Have Responsive Support?
No one likes it when their internet goes down but it happens to all of us from time to time. When you’re choosing an internet service provider, you need to find one that has great customer service and support.
If your new ISP has this, your internet will be back up and running faster: you won’t end up with a support ticket languishing in their system until the heat death of the universe.
So how can you find out about a company’s customer service and support quality? Start by looking at reviews on Google, Trustpilot, and the Better Business Bureau.
We’d recommend avoiding making a rash decision. Look for a company that will take good care of you and treats you as a valued customer, not a number.
- Strong and Reliable Speed
When we’re trying to choose the best internet service provider for our needs, we need to take speed into account. Before you start looking at different internet companies, work out how much internet speed you need. This is vital for both business and home internet.
For instance, if you are going to be watching Netflix, you need to budget at least 5 Mbps per device for HD streaming. Videoconferencing is another activity that uses a lot of bandwidth, with full HD video calls usually needing around 3 Mbps per device.
Sit down and work out how much bandwidth your business or household needs and look for businesses that offer this level of speed. Make sure, by checking reviews, that this is a reliable speed too: if it fluctuates a lot, it won’t be a very useful internet connection and you’ll end up looking for a new provider before too long.
- How Much Does it Cost?
While speed and support are important, they mean nothing if you can’t afford the bills. How much money per month are you willing to spend on high-speed internet?
Setting a budget should be at the forefront of your mind when buying internet. This is particularly the case when you’re deciding on business internet, which is often more expensive than home internet.
Work out exactly how much you can afford to spend and don’t go a single cent over that.
- What Options Are Available in Your Area?
Depending on your area, you may find that certain types of internet connections are not available. For instance, if you live in a very rural area, you might not be able to get fiber-optic broadband, as this is usually only available in towns and cities.
You could have cable laid to your house or office but this would be prohibitively expensive. You’d be better served by looking for other options.
In very isolated areas, you may be forced to use satellite broadband, which usually offers solid speeds but with high latency, which means it’s not very good for gaming or videoconferencing. If you’re not going to be doing these activities, it could represent a good but costly option.
Another option that’s often available in rural areas is line of sight broadband. To use this, you’ll need a small antenna attached to your home. This antenna can receive signals from base stations that have fiber-optic broadband, effectively serving as huge wi-fi antennas.
If you’re in an urban area, you’ll have a much greater range of choices. If it’s available, we’d recommend going for fiber-optic broadband or cable, which both offer strong and reliable speeds.
- What Packages Are Available?
Are you looking for internet only or would you also like to get a phone line and television through your internet service provider? Many providers offer packages that include a TV package and a set number of phone calls, which could be a fantastic bargain compared to getting them all from different providers.
Take a look at the websites of a variety of service providers and see what packages they offer. You may find that one outclasses the other in terms of what they offer!
- Is There a Data Cap?
While it’s less common than it once was, many internet service providers still have a data cap in place. This means that you can only download a certain amount of data every month. As everything you do online downloads data, this is essentially a usage cap.
If you go over your data cap, you could get hit with a very large fee. As you might not be aware that you’ve gone over the cap, this could turn into a very nasty surprise when it comes to paying your bill.
Look for providers that give you unlimited data: it will be well worth the peace of mind.
Choosing the Best Internet Service Provider for You
Finding the best internet service provider for your needs can be very difficult. If you take a look at what we’ve mentioned in this guide, though, it should be a little easier.
Try to find the provider that strikes the best balance of value, performance, and support. Good luck!
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