Choosing a Broadband Provider
By Matt Coughlan
Why take the time to compare Broadband Providers? Aren't all Broadband Providers essentially the same? It is not just those who are new to the Internet who think in this way. You see an advert on the TV for a Broadband Provider who is promising an all singing, all dancing service and think 'That sounds great... where do I sign up?'.
However, it is essential to know what you are getting before agreeing to a service, so you may be wandering what main points you should look at when doing a comparison...
? Speed: The desire for a fast connection is fuelled by online gaming and services such as Limewire and iTunes. Therefore, it is important to be aware of the actual speeds available to you. Take note that you are far from guaranteed to get the speeds advertised and 'Up to...' will become an all too familiar term.
? Reliability: In addition to a fast connection, be sure to consider reliability. A fast connection is essential if you are planning on making use of a service like BBC's iPlayer, but if your connection isn't stable it will render the programs unwatchable.
? Download Capacity: Whilst the number of Broadband Providers offering unlimited downloads is growing, this shouldn't be taken for granted. Many services still have a cap on the amount you can download, and when mixed with a fast connection this can be used up quickly. However, take note that even so called 'Unlimited' deals occasionally come with a 'Fair Use' policy which prevents excessive downloading.
? Customer Service: Even if you pick out a service which ticks all the boxes, imagine you have a problem regarding the service once it has been installed, and then you are forced to sit in a queue on a premium rate number only to be given the wrong information. Be sure to read customers reviews prior to signing up, and you'll have a sneak peak at the service you can expect.
Compare broadband, and run a broadband speed test online to ensure you have the cheapest and most efficient broadband on the market.
Amateur broadband journalist
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