Are you happy with your internet connection?
Maybe you’d like a faster service but aren’t sure what to do?
Or you’re unhappy with your current provider but you don’t know how to move to another one?
There are dozens of different ISPs (Internet Service Providers) across the country, so it’s not easy finding the best one for your needs. The majority of providers use Openreach’s network (a subsidiary of BT) to connect to your property, so that can have an effect on which providers you can access. Just because you’re connected via Openreach’s network it doesn’t mean you can only use BT for your internet connection.
There are many websites that will show you which providers you can connect to, and the likely speeds you can expect. Uswitch have quite a good comparison guide to help you work out if it’s worth moving.
It surprises some people that 25 years ago most of us didn’t have always-on broadband internet, we had to make do with dial-up, which was slow – it had a maximum speed of 56K! Early broadband services started with a connection speed of 512K, which quickly improved to 2Mbps, then 8Mbps, 24Mbps and so on.
Having said that, society has changed massively over that time and many people need to be connected at all times. Or unfortunately have a really unstable connection.
That’s where a 4G mobile backup router comes in. When your primary broadband connection drops, the 4G router can step in and provide a connection instead. A 4G router can also be useful for quickly providing temporary connectivity without waiting for lines to be installed and provisioned.
3G Switch off
Did you know the mobile networks are going to start turning off their 3G signals in 2024? If you have devices that don’t use 4G or 5G, they will probably drop down to 2G speeds, which is really slow. Some devices might need a settings change to make sure they are using the correct network for calls and data.
5G and 5G
There is a lot of confusion when it comes to ‘5G’. One definition refers to the fifth generation of mobile phone networks, which allow really fast internet connections on newer devices. By switching off the 3G signals, the networks can replace these signals with 5G, making mobile connections faster still.
The ‘other’ 5G refers to the 5GHz signal used by your internet router. When WiFi first came out it just used the 2.4GHz spectrum, which has now become quite crowded, and generally only allows for a maximum speed of about 600Mbps (which sounds quite fast until you realise the latest devices on the 5GHz spectrum can reach over 9600Mbps!)
Your internet router will often have two signals that show up when you’re trying to connect a device – the 5GHz signal often has ‘_5G’ on the end of it, hence the confusion.
We would normally recommend connecting to the 5GHz signal whenever possible, as it offers the best speed, but unfortunately this comes at the cost of reduced range.
Many internet providers offer reduced cost tariffs for people who receive qualifying benefits. They don’t seem to put a lot of effort into promoting these products, but most of them are listed here. If you qualify, you could get broadband for as little as £15 per month, or mobile internet from £10 per month.
Feel free to get in touch if you need some guidance.