Wireless broadband: getting the best deal
When shopping for a great wireless broadband deal, first you need to consider what you will be using your wireless connection for.
Choosing the plan that best suits you
If you only want to use the Internet for occasionally browsing the Web, sending and receiving emails and chatting online, you do not need a plan with a large download limit; 1 gigabyte (GB) should be enough. Such a plan should not cost more than $40 per month. For sheer convenience, mobile broadband is probably the best option in this case (you can compare mobile broadband plans on Broadband Buddy.
If you are a frequent Web surfer but will only occasionally download large files, opt for a plan with a download limit of around two to three GB's. The average price for such a plan is $30-$50 per month.
If you intend to regularly download large files and stream multi-media content from sites such as YouTube, select a plan with a medium-sized download limit of three to five gigabytes. Such a plan generally costs around $40-$70 per month.
If you want to download lots of large files, use peer-to-peer file sharing, and play online games, it is best to choose a plan with high downstream and upstream speeds, and a download limit of at least 10 gigabytes.
However, wireless broadband plans of this type are quite expensive (costing anywhere from $80 to $180 a month), so you may be better off investigating ADSL plans or ADSL2+ plans if those options are available in your area.
Perks and sweeteners
Watch out for these features in a plan. To get them it is definitely worth paying a few extra dollars:
- Having free uploads is a major perk, especially if you intend to play online games or use torrents and other peer-to-peer file-sharing solutions.
- Having a separate download limit for “off-peak” times is also a large benefit, as you can queue files to download during these periods, effectively as much as doubling your original download limit.
- If you own a laptop computer, you can take your modem anywhere outside the house within your ISP’s coverage area and use your own Internet connection. For this reason, a large coverage area is a good sweetener when shopping for a wireless broadband deal.
Many ISPs also offer telephone or other services, and large discounts on their wireless broadband deals for users who “bundle” their Internet access with these services. While this “bundling” of plans is often cost effective, be sure to weigh the advantages of your current telephone plans against those of the ISP so that you do not lose out overall for the sake of a small discount on your wireless broadband.
Don’t stop at the numbers
When choosing a plan, you should look at more than the information and statistics each ISP offers on its website. Before deciding on a plan, you can talk to existing customers of an ISP in order to ascertain quality of service, reliability, and real-world connection speeds.
Installation and equipment costs
Although the cost of purchasing a wireless modem can seem daunting at first, remember that it is a once-off cost. The portable nature of wireless broadband means that you will not need to reinstall your modem even if you move house. Additionally, even if charging relatively little or completely waiving your modem and installation fees, many ISPs compensate by “locking you in” to a contract while you repay these costs.
You can shortlist broadband plans here & email them later.
No products currently shortlisted.