Finding cheap high speed internet service providers: A 360-degree view
The information highway is one place where speed won’t kill you! The need for speed is crucial for both business and personal use. Apart from speed, consumers need an affordable and reliable service.
A world-wide study conducted in 2017 by Cable.co.uk reveals that internet services across the country are priced relatively high. At an average $66.20, the country ranks closer to the higher end in the list of 196 countries studied. An Internet Services Access Report from the Federal Communications Commission claims that nearly half the American population does not have access to broadband internet speeds.
Keeping these factors in mind, it’s important to do your research and shop around to find cheap high speed internet service providers for your home and office use.
Why do I need the cheapest high speed internet?
- Speed impacts the quality of your internet connection.
- It’s important for your home and office communication needs.
- You need it for web-surfing and email, HD TV streaming, online gaming, and downloading files efficiently.
- Cheap high speed internet service providers ensure that there is no interruption in services when sharing the same connection between several devices.
- For conducting webinars, video conferencing, and for uninterrupted professional communication, it is important that you look for cheap high speed internet service providers.
- High speed is needed to leverage cloud and VoIP services, data protection, and full back-ups to avoid data-loss and enable disaster-recovery planning.
- Cheaper services help you plan your budget and ensure that your business and personal communications are smooth, fast, and cost-effective.
What does “speed” really mean?
- Internet speed, measured in megabits per second or Mbps, refers to the speed at which data travels around the web and reaches your desktop, smartphone, tablet, watch, or any other communications device.
- “High-speed” is also known as a broadband connection.
- It gives download speeds of 768 Kbps (kilobits per second) at a minimum and upload speeds of at least 200 Kbps.
- Speed depends on a number of factors, including the type of internet connection, that is, 3G, 4G, mobile hotspot, modem, dial-up, cable, satellite, DSL (digital subscriber line), etc.
- High-traffic websites can slow your connection down.
- Your receiving device has to meet the minimum service requirements. Hardware, software, applications, equipment systems, etc. affect the internet speed.
- If a number of devices are sharing the same connection, speed may get affected.
What are the most common speed requirements?
- Analyze your usage requirements before opting for a service plan, as personal and business uses differ widely.
- Normal web-surfing, email, occasional low-level online gaming, and connection shared among two or three devices may use 5-10 Mbps.
- Higher to Moderate High-definition (HD) streaming, higher-level online gaming, frequent downloading of files, and multiple shared connections uses 10-40 Mbps.
- Serious and continuous gaming, heavy streaming, high downloading, and larger number of shared devices requires 40 Mbps and higher.
- Your needs may vary according to the number of shared devices that you want to give access to.
- Wifi strength, traffic and congestion, and time of use can affect the speed.
- You can use a simple speed calculator to check whether you’re receiving what you paid for and also, to check what your average usage is.
How do I find high speed internet providers in my area?
- Plans are location-specific and can vary dramatically across neighborhoods.
- Look at websites like Allconnect that can help you zero in on the available plans in your area.
- Comparison websites make recommendations based on surveys and user reviews; study them carefully for cheap high speed internet service providers.
- The US government, various non-profit organizations, and internet service providers provide subsidies like AT&T Access, Spectrum Internet Assist, Lifeline, Comcast Internet Essentials, and Everyone On.
- Get recommendations from trustworthy sources like neighbours, family members, and friends. Bundle your TV and internet services.
- For cheap high speed internet service providers, shop around and compare prices across multiple service providers.
- Some places have only a single service provider; look for more options by entering your ZIP code on sites like BroadbandNow and explore other providers in your area.
Are there subsidies and benefits that I can avail?
- If you’re a light user, providers like FreedomPop offer free high speed internet to users in their service area if you buy their home modem.
- Other cheap high speed internet service providers include NetZero, Juno, etc., with DSL plans priced at $10 with no restrictions on data for the first 6 months if you live in their service area. This is great if you’re visiting the locality temporarily.
- Financially-challenged seniors can access the cheapest high speed internet from programs like CenturyLink and Connect2Compete if they can show that they’re getting benefits like Medicaid, food-stamps, and assistance for public housing/home-energy.
- Stay abreast of information on sites like Cheapinternet, which give regular updates on low-cost and cheap high speed internet service providers across the country.