For most people today, a strong Internet connection is critical to their daily routine. However, finding the service that’s right for you can feel daunting, especially with over 7,000 available Internet providers in the United States. Here are some factors to consider when deciding which Internet service provider (ISP)is the best fit for you and your family.
Availability in Your Location
If you live in an urban area, you likely have many different services to choose from. However, for rural users with more limited options, one of the major deciding factors when selecting an Internet service is availability. Satellite Internet is a great alternative for rural users to consider because it provides coverage beyond the reach of cable and fiber Internet service providers.
Tools like InMyArea make it easy to find providers in your location -- simply input your address to see the available options. After you have gathered a list of options nearby, you can start considering other factors to help you narrow down your list.
Reliability & Experience
Taking time to explore the track record of the providers you’re considering is an important step that’s often overlooked. As the market for Internet service providers continues to grow, it’s important to take the history and experience of each provider into account. Which providers are new to the market and which providers have been innovating for decades?
High-speed Internet providers that have been in the market for decades offer a proven record of reliability and a demonstrated commitment to connecting consumers. Find out whether the provider focuses on providing you with the best possible Internet connection or if this is just a small portion of their business. Companies with a focus on Internet connectivity are more likely to invest in quality customer service, continuous service improvement, and innovative solutions.
Find What Suits Your Needs
Every household has different Internet usage and habits. Think through which activities you’ll be using your high-speed Internet for to ensure your connection matches your needs. Here are some questions to consider:
- How many people will be using the Internet at the same time?
- What will you be using the Internet for (i.e., emailing, browsing, etc.)?
- What time of day will you be using the Internet the most (i.e., morning, afternoon, evening)?
Your answers to questions like this will be helpful when you call to sign up for an Internet service and need to decide how much data you’ll need each month or whether a Wi-Fi extender might make sense for you.
Of all of the activities we use the Internet for on a daily basis, many of them involve sharing personal information. Whether you’re sending emails, checking your bank statements, or paying your phone bill, keeping your data secure should always be top-of-mind. That’s why it’s crucial to consider what security options are available through your Internet service provider.
While many ISPs offer inherent data protection, most services also work together with security management providers like Norton 360 to ensure your data is as secure as possible. Check out some of the key benefits of securing your connection in our recent blog.
Finding the right Internet service provider can be an overwhelming decision, especially when the Internet is such a crucial tool for accomplishing your everyday tasks. Taking time to assess which providers are available where you live, the experience and reliability of each provider, your specific needs, and the service’s security options will help you choose a rural Internet service provider that you can depend on.