Three of the most important things to consider when selecting an internet service provider are the type of internet technology, the speed it offers, and your location. While the third is a thing you cannot avoid, choosing the first one will influence the second for you. In other words, the speed that a fiber optic internet offers is different to what a DSL or satellite internet offers. Sp knowing the difference between the technologies will let you pick the fastest internet provider available in your area. However, the fastest does not necessarily mean the best internet provider; below are some other things to consider when looking for the “best”.
You may not necessarily be doing business round the clock, but with 24/7 technical support from your internet service provider, you will have fewer things to take care of. Downtime is productivity lost, so make it a point to ask if your ISP provides onsite technical support often, and that its live phone or chat assistant is available always.
Average Yearly Downtime
The best internet provider would promise near-perfect uptime, but most do not guarantee it always. That is where the Customer Service Level Agreement comes in; in case your uptime expectations are not met, it will be necessitated to make it up to you in the form of credits, discounts, or early agreement termination. Make sure you get things down in writing, but also remember to expect realistic things from your ISP’s side. After all, there is bound to be an outage in an area or something similar that causes general downtime.
Some internet providers will impose bandwidth caps or limits on customer accounts. According to their Fair Usage Policy, if you use more data than the limit, there is bound to be an overage fee for getting back the actual internet speed offered in the tiered speed package. Else, the company policy may be to throttle the speed should customers exceed the monthly data limit. Ideally, the latter is the better option out of the two, although it is good to have no data limits at all.
The average contract length offered by the best internet provider in any area would be a couple of years, although some ISPs offer shorter contractual terms too at greater overall savings. It is equally important to read through and understand early contract termination charges, which can be expensive should you opt out of the plan during the promotional period.