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Internet Connections: Which Would You Choose?

The World Wide Web is more popular than ever before with online gaming, social networking, the need to enhance communication, and to find the vast amount of available information. To gain access to all that is available you need some sort of connection to the internet. There are many different types of internet connections to choose from, each having their own pros and cons. Some of the most popular internet connections include dial-up, DSL, cable, and satellite, but which is best? Your own personal needs will be the ultimate factor in determining which Internet connection suits you and your lifestyle best.

Dial-Up Internet Connection

Dial-up internet connection is not the fastest way to connect to the internet but it is typically one of the most affordable. In order to have dial-up internet(PDF) you must have a home phone. The connection goes straight through the phone line to your computer. In many cases you cannot be on the telephone and on the internet at the same time. Dial-up internet is often the slowest as far as speed goes but is available everywhere as long as a phone connection is available, and the connection is reliable as long as the phone lines are working properly. Other than a phone line and the installation software there is no other special equipment needed. Dial-up internet service providers include EarthLink starting as low as £9.99 per month, Juno starting as low as £10.95 per month, and NetZero starting as low as £9.95 per month.

DSL Internet Connection

DSL stands for digital subscriber line that is connected the same way as dial-up connections. It is an internet service provider that is similar to dial-up but it is more advanced. Phone calls and faxes use little of the electrical transfer capacity, so it is possible to be on the internet and still receive incoming calls and faxes. The speeds of DSL are more consistent than that of cable speeds and there is a greater uptime than with cable. The reliability of DSL internet connection may depend on the quality of the phone lines as well as the distance to the distance to the phone relay station. DSL is not available in all areas just because a phone connection is available. DSL internet connections (PDF) usually requires an outside modem, installation software, in addition to a phone line. Digital subscriber line providers include AT&T with prices starting at £14.95 a month, Verizon with prices starting at £14.99 a month, and EarthLink with prices that start at £14.95 per month.

Cable Internet Connection

A cable internet connection uses a coaxial cable that needs a special modem and Ethernet network in order to work correctly. Almost any cable subscriber can receive access to cable internet connection. The problem lies within where cable subscriptions are available. Depending on where you live this connection is not always an option. If you do live in an area in which cable connection (PDF) is available you, you will be able to get a higher bandwidth and faster speed for downloading and web surfing. With cable internet connections there is no waiting for a dial-up connection because it is not connected through a phone line. You can also be online and on the phone at the same time which is a major convenience. A cable internet connection is 100 times faster than dial-up as well as being seven times faster than the standard 768 kbps DSL. Some of the most popular cable internet service providers include EarthLink which has prices starting at £29.95 a month, Road Runner which has pricing that starts at £39.95 per month, and Comcast with prices that start at £29.99 per month.

Satellite Internet Connection

Satellite internet connection is provided through satellites that are mounted either in the yard of your residence or somewhere on your actual house. Geostationary satellites can offer higher speeds but the signals cannot reach certain areas of the world. Satellites can be affected by changes in the weather such as rain or snow which can prove to be an issue for a lot of satellite subscribers. The connection consists of an outdoor mounted dish, feed horn, universal LNB, and feed line. Indoors the connection consists of a PCI card which is an internal connection to the computer, an external modem where the Ethernet port or universal serial bus port is and it connects the modem to the computer. Some sites will require programming and the proxy set which will need to be done by the installation crew. Some popular satellite internet service providers include HughesNet with basic plans starting at £59.99 per month, SkyWay USA starting at £39.95 a month, and WildBlue starting at £49.95 a month.

If you intend on using the internet for any reason you will need an internet connection of some sort. There are dial-up internet service providers which are inexpensive but slower than the other options available. Cable, satellite, and DSL are great options when it comes to high speed but each have issues such as availability in certain areas and weather interference. Depending on whether high speed or low price is more important for your specific needs, those will be some key factors in determining which internet connection will be best for you.