There may be several reasons for which you might need to change your service provider. Maybe you have to shift to a new location for work or just a better house. Maybe you want your children to grow up in the countryside enjoying nature in their early years instead of breathing all the pollution of our cities. On the other hand, maybe your current internet service provider (ISP) is just not good enough for you. Whatever the reason may be, one thing remains, you need to look for a new internet provider. For someone who moves for work quite often, nobody can understand the hassle better than I do.
It is confusing and time-consuming and some other provider always seems to look better than the one you are currently looking into. If you are stuck in such a situation then rejoice because this article will help you figure out the most essential things that you need to know before you subscribe to an internet provider’s plan. However, before getting started I would just like you to know that some of the top internet providers in the United States include the likes of Spectrum, Cox, Optimum, etc. Even though all of them are great, Spectrum stands out because they offer blazing fast speeds at affordable rates.
Therefore, if you are looking for quality and affordability you may want to check out Spectrum packages. However, you will need to ensure that your location is included in Spectrum’s coverage area before getting your hopes high. If your address is serviceable then you are one lucky fella because you have nothing more to research. Just check out the offers available and choose the one that fits your needs. It is that simple!
In case you have to move further into your quest for the best internet service provider for your needs then the points discussed below will be of great help to you.
Download speed is the speed at which you can receive data from the internet onto your device and Upload speed is the speed at which you can upload data from your device on to the internet. Even though both are important, the download speed is usually the only advertised speed by internet providers and is the only speed taken into consideration by most users as well. Unless you’re going to be uploading lots of files (audio, video, text, etc.) onto the internet you don’t have to worry about the upload speed either.
Download speed is a different story though. To ensure that you do not face any connectivity issues, it is essential that you choose a download speed that would fulfill your usage needs. Everything that you do over the internet is dependent on the download speed you receive. Be it reading emails, browsing websites, or streaming movies, the better the download speed the better the functionality of your internet connection.
Therefore, when you call to subscribe it is important that you confirm what the maximum and minimum download speed you should expect to receive as it is normal for it to fluctuate throughout the day. However, plus/minus a few Mbps through the day is okay but if you’re paying for a maximum speed of 100 Mbps and receiving only 25 Mbps then that is going to be a problem.
Latency or Ping is the time taken for your data to be transferred from your device to the distant server and then back to your device. It goes without saying that the lower this rate the better, as that would mean faster data transfer to and from the server. It is measured in milliseconds (ms) and anything below 100 ms is considered ideal for seamless usage. Especially if you are a dedicated online gamer this would be a very important aspect of your internet connection for you to be able to play lag-free games.
The tricky part though is that none of the servers advertises this rate, so you may not be able to find this out at the time of subscribing to the internet provider’s plan. However, if possible try to ask your neighbors or your friends using the services of the same provider. Maybe drop by their place to check the ping rate yourself, if that is possible.
Regardless of the internet service provider, you will need your house to be wired for the internet connection in question with cable/telephone jacks installed in one of the walls. If the house is pre-wired, you are good to go but if not then the internet provider may charge you extra for wiring and jacks.
Besides the wiring, you will need a modem to be able to receive the internet signals in your house. This device is connected to the cable/telephone jack in the wall and converts the cable/telephone signals into signals that your devices can comprehend. If you are going to use a single device in the house that would be connected to the modem with an Ethernet cable then this is all you need. However, if you are a few people in the house who will need to connect multiple devices to the internet then you will need a Wi-Fi router. This device converts the modem’s signals into wireless signals through which all your smart devices can be connected to the internet.
All providers offer company equipment, which usually comes with technical support, but most providers will also allow you to use your equipment as long as it’s compatible with the connection. You can also choose to install your equipment by yourself but internet providers usually offer the professional installation option for the less tech-savvy.
I cannot stress enough on the importance of reading your contract terms carefully before agreeing to them and asking questions if you are unsure about something. It is no use freaking out with the customer service agents later once you have signed up for the service. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are aware of what the contract entails. This includes the fine print as well, i.e. things like the promotion period, standard rates, the term of service, early termination fee, etc.
The above is not a comprehensive list of things you should consider before signing up with an ISP. However, these are the most important things to consider before going ahead with a subscription. You must never ignore these.