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Need new internet service provider
Old 10-22-2015, 06:54 PM   #1
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Need new internet service provider

Our internet service provider, Clear (Clearwire) will be discontinuing in a week or so and we will need another. We are just interested in internet service and would like something fairly fast and capable of accessing video like Youtube, Netflix, Hulu, etc. without delays or hesitation but at a reasonable cost.

I am not computer literate and could use suggestions in what to look for in a provider and any what the information they post means (3 Mbps vs 25 Mbps vs 75 Mbps etc. ). What should I be looking for? Any suggestions on good providers at a reasonable cost is also appreciated.

I know Xfinity and ATT offer service but I don't want to pay for a package deal that includes television too.

Anyone have experience they would like to relate?

Thanks, Cheers!
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Old 10-22-2015, 08:25 PM   #2
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If you want to stream HD video you'll probably need a minimum of 5Mbps, more would be better. Not sure where you live but most carriers offer Internet only. Besides your local telecom company check with your local cable TV company, most offer several Internet plans, more speed more $.
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Old 10-22-2015, 08:30 PM   #3
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I only had two real choices, and one of those was slow DSL since I'm far away from the network center.

You should be able to get just internet without a problem. You need about 5 Mbps download speed for a reasonable Netflix video stream.

Here's what Netflix says:
https://help.netflix.com/en/node/306...ButtonClick&q=

They also publish their average speeds for many ISP's. You might search for that and see if one of your options sticks out.
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Old 10-22-2015, 10:56 PM   #4
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We just changed our provider yesterday.
For years we used DSL at 1.35 mbps or is it mps ? Anyhow the speed was 1.35 as I measured it over the years many times.
We watched netflix with that a lot and had no big issues as long as the computers were turned off (so they would not download stuff).
Netflix will reduce the quality a bit so it shows up.
Streaming a tv show on the computers meant it would stop at times to load more of the movie.

Skype worked very well, especially after I set the router to give priority to VOIP traffic.

We switched to WOW , and get 30 mps for $25/mo. It was the slowest they offered as we wanted just internet service.
It is FAST , the netflix comes in sharper now on the HD plasma tv, and downloads are incredibly fast. Web pages snap open , practically no wait for the content to show.

I know an office of graphic designers (big files) that use a 75 mbps service, but honestly that is just crazy for a regular person.

I say I cannot see any reason I would go higher than 30 mbps for my house.
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Old 10-23-2015, 04:04 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunset View Post
We just changed our provider yesterday.
For years we used DSL at 1.35 mbps or is it mps ? Anyhow the speed was 1.35 as I measured it over the years many times.
We watched netflix with that a lot and had no big issues as long as the computers were turned off (so they would not download stuff).
Netflix will reduce the quality a bit so it shows up.
Streaming a tv show on the computers meant it would stop at times to load more of the movie.

Skype worked very well, especially after I set the router to give priority to VOIP traffic.

We switched to WOW , and get 30 mps for $25/mo. It was the slowest they offered as we wanted just internet service.
It is FAST , the netflix comes in sharper now on the HD plasma tv, and downloads are incredibly fast. Web pages snap open , practically no wait for the content to show.

I know an office of graphic designers (big files) that use a 75 mbps service, but honestly that is just crazy for a regular person.

I say I cannot see any reason I would go higher than 30 mbps for my house.
I did the WOW move too. But understand what you're buying into (and you seem to have to for really good rates). This is a teaser rate, it will not last forever. It will move up over the following two years. It is good if you can play different providers off of each other.
Second, this does not include equipment cost... rental from the provider. It pays to buy your own cable modem if you are going to use a cable provider. I picked a DOCSIS 3 modem that was compatible with both local cable providers ( new enough that it should stay on their compatibility lists for many years). If you rent the modem from the service provider, you will likely pay for it over the first one or two years of service.
Ask AT&T for an internet only price. I had them for a while on a teaser rate... but like all good teaser rates, they increase.
If you were happy with clearwire, look at what the download rate you were getting. This should give you a ball park of what to look for. The netflix download speed guidelines are likely a good start for estimating needed speed. Be careful of the provider trying to tell you that you need faster speeds. It is usually best to know what you last had and how acceptable it was. They always tried to tell me that my 10Mbps-15Mbps was too slow for my devices. But hey, WOW cut my rate in have and gave me 30Mbps ... at least for 1 year. It's really sad that the business model for providers is to jack the prices up on customers who stay long. I did not change all that often in the past, but have just put it into the plans going forward. With no income (SS) for 8 to 16 years (no pension period)... I do need to watch the pennies I pay out.
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Old 10-23-2015, 06:14 AM   #6
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WOW also offers limited availability WRT locations. WOW! Locations

Quote:
Originally Posted by zinger1457 View Post
If you want to stream HD video you'll probably need a minimum of 5Mbps, more would be better. Not sure where you live but most carriers offer Internet only. Besides your local telecom company check with your local cable TV company, most offer several Internet plans, more speed more $.
+1. I have 6 Mbps with XFinity $49.95/mo and it's adequate for streaming, but more is definitely better.
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Old 10-23-2015, 06:59 AM   #7
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The big question is what providers are available....

As an example, I have basically 2.... ATT and Comcast.... there are a couple of very small providers, but they piggyback on ATT, so not really different...


ATT is crap... I have only slow and slower DSL... at a high rate... used them for many year but finally got tired of them and DW was on me for the slow video....

Went to Comcast and so far love it... I have phone and internet at a teaser rate, but it will go up to $90+ after a year...

Wish there were more options, but there are not.... and I live in a BIG city...

PS... ATT has not upgraded our neighborhood, which is why we get 3M DSL.....
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Old 10-23-2015, 07:17 AM   #8
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Switched about 1.5 years ago from crappy ATT DSL to Comcast. Even with the slowest speed, I'm able to watch streamed programs with very little if any buffering on my Amazon Prime TV box. Have internet only at about $40/month after the 12 month promotional rate ended. Overall, I'm happy as instead of nearly daily outages, an outage happens a few times a year and then recovery is faster too.
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Old 10-23-2015, 09:25 AM   #9
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There is a website called DSLreports.com, which has tons of information about various ISPs. IIRC you can input your zip code and read hundreds of reviews of ISPs in your area. There's also a very active forum for more in-depth information. This is a good way to compare your options in terms of bandwidth, price, reliability, etc.

I've had Verizon FiOS (fiber) since 2006. I pay $65/mo for 50/50 internet plus broadcast tier TV, which avoids the roof-top antenna hassle (I'm 35-40 miles from broadcast towers). We also have Charter cable as an option. Their bandwidth tops out at 30/5 and, from my prior experience, is far more variable at peak times vs fiber. We also have several DSL options. But Charter and Verizon are much better options here.
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Old 10-23-2015, 09:39 AM   #10
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Another voter for WOW if you can get them. $25 a month for internet only, year two is $35 a month. Not sure where it goes from there, but if you have more than one provider you can bounce back and forth.
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