Want a fast, reliable and affordable home internet connection? The reason that most of the UK is using broadband is that it ticks all the boxes. However, making the right kind of choices when you’re deciding on a broadband plan can not only save you money but also improve your level of service. So what kinds of choices are you looking at here? Today we’re talking about some of the decision you’re facing when looking at broadband plans, and how each choice might affect your service and your pocket. So before you shop, read on to get all the info you’ll need to make great broadband internet choices…
Service Methods and How to Choose
You’re looking at three different service methods when it comes to broadband internet. The most popular two choices are either cable or DSL. Cable will use the same wires that bring cable television into your house to transport data, and as long as you have a cable TV outlet installation is going to be fast and easy. DSL will use telephone wires to transport data, so as long as you’re wired into the phone system and have a land line phone connection then installation will be fast and easy.
In fact, most providers will give you free installation on both of these options. However, if you don’t have either a phone line or a cable TV outlet, then you’re going to have problems, facing a difficult and costly installation process. There isn’t really much to choose from between cable and DSL, they’re both pretty affordable and reliable, and speeds are quite similar too.
Fibre optic on the other hand is going to give you far faster internet speeds, but at a price. Fibre optic broadband packages will cost you a lot more than either cable or DSL, but you do get speeds which will give you faster downloads, web pages that open more quickly, and smoother video streaming.
Installation will be easier if you choose to connect your home to the fibre optic network using telephone wires, but this will slow speeds down a little. But having the network extended into your house will be messy and pricey. Plus, to get fibre optic broadband you’re going to have to live close to a network, and not everyone does. You can check the availability of fibre optic networks with any provider on their web page.
Post Office Home Phone and Broadband, Sky TV and Internet: Bundling Choices
One of the best financial decisions you can make when choosing a broadband package is to go for a bundling deal. This is when you get more than one service from a company on the same contract. Because broadband connections tend to use either phone or cable TV lines most providers also offer these services. And by combining services you end up saving money. Many ISPs offer broadband with free gifts, but you usually end up paying more than for a similar deal without the freebie.
Post Office home phone and broadband plans tend to offer great deals on combining phone and internet services, whilst Sky offers amazing savings on combining your cable TV and internet services. You always save money by bundling, so you should try to do it if at all possible. Some providers, like Virgin Media allow you to bundle all kinds of different services, including your mobile phone.
Check out the Post Office home phone and broadband deals, Sky TV packages, and Virgin Media for some amazing savings on combined service plans. Plus, you get the convenience of only having one monthly bill for all your services.
Data Plan Choices
When you’re looking at broadband plans you have three basic data plan choices: capped, unlimited and truly unlimited. A capped plan is generally going to be the cheapest choice, but it will come with a monthly data cap or download limit. Every action that you perform on the internet requires the downloading of data, even sending emails and opening web pages, so these caps or limits are basically a limit to the amount of internet you can use each month.
They are cheap, for light users, but should you break your monthly limit then costs are going to soar. Going over the limit means one of two things will probably happen. You will be automatically upgraded to a more expensive plan with a bigger data limit or you will pay expensive extra fees on any extra data that you use. So, whilst capped plans are cheaper per month, if you’re a big internet user who’s going to break that monthly limit, you’ll get better savings on an unlimited plan.
A truly unlimited plan is the most expensive option, but it means that you can use as much data as you want any time that you want. These plans are great for high end users, or for families who want to run more than one computer off the same network connection.
An unlimited plan is a little different in that it will be subject to a fair usage policy. With an unlimited plan you can technically use as much data as you want, but the operator will reserve the right to slow down speeds if they think that you’re using too much data or during peak internet times when many people are online.
Average users won’t be unduly affected by these policies though, especially if you’re only running one or two computers from the same network connection. An unlimited plan will be a little cheaper in general than a truly unlimited one.
Contract Length Choices
Finally, you’ll have to decide how long you want to sign a contract for. Traditional contracts will be twelve, eighteen or twenty four months long. Usually, the longer your contract is the cheaper the monthly price will be, because the provider is guaranteed your custom for a longer period of time.
Some providers offer thirty day rolling contracts. These aren’t usually the best idea, since they do end up being quite expensive. You should only go on a monthly contract if you think that there’s a chance that you’ll need to cancel service soon, such as if you’re planning to move house, for example.
Phil Turner needed a new laptop so he decided to look at broadband with free gifts seeing as he needed a new broadband contract as well. He checked out all the offers at uSwitch.com and found some interesting deals on this page, http://www.uswitch.com/broadband/compare/broadband_with_free_gifts/
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