Internet service locators: connecting people faster
ADSL is a distance-sensitive technology. The closer you are to an ADSL-capable telephone exchange, the faster your ADSL broadband will be. Unfortunately, not all Australians are yet able to connect to broadband services. Using a service locator is the easiest way to find out if the type of broadband service you’d like is available near you.
Why can’t everyone connect to broadband?
At present, 85 percent of Australians can connect to a broadband service. The other 15 percent have not been able to access ADSL either because they are too remotely located, or their local exchange hasn't yet been upgraded. They may be able to get satellite broadband with assistance from the Government.
The Australian Government's Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts provides an online service locator. By simply typing in an address, it will not only tell you if you can access broadband services, but also the type of service on offer for you, such as cable, ADSL2+ or wireless, and give a list of providers and their contact details.
Broadband not available
If the service locator search reveals you are unable to connect to broadband in your area, you can register your interest with Telstra BigPond. As Australia has many small exchanges, registering interest is the best way to encourage Telstra to upgrade an exchange for ADSL.
If you are not able to find an Internet service provider (ISP) who offers broadband, you may be able to hook up via a one- or two-way satellite service. A one-way connection uses the satellite for downloads, and either a dial-up connection or high speed IDSN connection for uploads, while the two-way connection uses the satellite for both. An advantage of the one-way satellite/dial-up connection is that you can set it up yourself.
A need for speed
Do you really need broadband? You may be able to get by with dial-up. Deciding which service best suits you requires an understanding of the type of user you are. Is your primary purpose to send emails? Read the paper online? Pay some bills? You probably won’t need a super speedy connection. It really down to how much you use the Internet and what kind of activities you use it for.
User types – some examples
Let’s use some examples to help you work out if you need the faster connection broadband can offer. Ann uses the Internet to check her email only every two to three days, and occasionally uses it to check the weather or catch up on the news. She doesn’t really need a more expensive broadband connection and contract – dial-up is perfectly adequate for her needs.
David and Jenny, on the other hand, both work from home. They use online banking for business transactions, regularly update their website and blogs, download large files from clients and online stores and use VoIP to speak with contacts overseas. Broadband allows both of them 24-hour-a-day access (via a network set up) which means they can both surf at the same time and the phone line stays free for client calls. For them the extra expense is well worth it.
You can shortlist broadband plans here & email them later.
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