A a longtime advocate for WFH, people often ask me, what ISP I think they should get. The answer, however, is not quite straightforward, because no ISP is best for every home.
This is why I created this list of 7 things to consider before choosing your ISP. So you can make the best possible decision for your home. Here they are, so keep reading.
1. Availability and Location
It is always wise to check if the service provider has connection points within your area before requesting an installation. Most ISPs have a map feature on their websites that allow you to check their availability across the region. You can also call the ISP’s head office to confirm if they offer services within your area.
2. Uptime and Reliability
First, you have to understand that it can be quite challenging for an internet service provider to offer 100% uptime 24/7. However, this doesn’t mean that you should settle for less. Most home internet service providers will always have a backup for their primary connection in case it fails or there is a drop in speed. So, be sure to check out the uptime statistics for the ISP’s you’re considering. All problems are also not the ISP’s fault, sometimes the cause is something in your home network.
Make sure you read the service level agreements as well. It’s important to know whether the ISP will refund you in case of downtime or how long it will take them to respond to such issues. It will be no use having home internet when you can barely use it because it is slow or not available most of the time.
It would be best if you always looked for a package that will offer value for money. Most ISPs provide various packages for home internet services. Home internet packages can cost as little as $20. In most cases, the price will range depending on the bandwidth or speeds. Other additional services such as VOIP will attract extra fees. The rates could be different if you are getting cable internet and you want to use the triple play service. You also need to review the data caps if there are any and how much you will be charged for extra use.
4. Customer Service and Response Time
Customer service is everything when it comes to handling clients. I bet you will want the ISP to pick up your calls whenever you call to report downtime or slow speeds. Most ISPs will have their email and contact number on their website. Other than that, you should know their response time in case their network has an issue. When you locate an internet service provider within your region, look up more information about them on the web. You can get a lot of information from past and present client reviews, and it will give you a good picture of what to expect from them.
5. Type of Internet Connection
There are various types of internet connectivity technologies out there. Each has its pros and cons. The common types of connection are:
- Fiber Optic Internet – This uses fiber cables to deliver internet to your home. Fiber connection is generally the fastest option.
- Cable Internet – It is the most common type of internet service available. It uses the standard coaxial cable used on your TV uses to distribute internet services.
- Satellite Internet- Uses a dish to receive internet signals from communication satellites located in space.
- DSL Internet (Digital Subscriber Internet) – Transmits internet connection via telephone lines.
Remember, not all areas are ready to support some types of internet connectivity technologies. So, be sure to check on availability. If, for instance, your region is not fiber-ready, your ISP may recommend cable or satellite connection.
Also, make sure to get the right hardware for your type of internet, you can check out the best modems for every internet service provider if you’re uncertain what to get.
Your internet needs may grow over time. For example, you may start running a small home business and require an upgrade on the bandwidth provided. Besides that, you could want extra services such as VOIP to be added to your current package.
Ideally, if you plan to add additional devices which could be internet-heavy. You will need to upgrade your current bandwidth. Ensure you review the range of services the internet service provider offers before committing to them. It is always a good idea to have everything under one service provider.
7. Installation Fees
Some ISPs offer free installation services as part of a package for welcoming new subscribers. In such cases, you will only be required to make a full payment for your first month. However, you will be required to buy some equipment to get the internet to your house in other cases. This can be quite expensive, especially for satellite and WiMAX connections.
If you are looking forward to having the best home internet then the above-mentioned hacks can make your work at home unmatched. However, to get the best service provider you can always use the web to get the market prices from the best ISPs worldwide.
If you’re not well-versed in technology matters, you can request the ISP to send a technician to your house for a site visit. He or she will recommend the best internet connection package for your home and advise on the right home internet package.