Dealing with Austin Service Providers for internet, phone, and television can be a real pain. It’s hard to know what company will serve your needs best while providing a fair cost. This article is intended to distill all of the moving parts associated with TV and network service providers and give you a straightforward guide of who does what best.
The three basic elements of network service are internet, phone, and television. Each service provider has strengths and weaknesses in each category. We’ll break it down by provider later.
Depending on where you live, you may not have many options in choosing your provider. Before you get too deep into your research, check what’s available in your area.
Which Provider Won’t Raise My Rate?
None. Whether it’s Spectrum, AT&T, Google Fiber, or Grande, every company operates on 12-month introductory rates that increase after your first year. That rate increase is unavoidable.
Rather than trying to juggle providers year in and year out to avoid rate increases, we suggest you pinpoint which provider will fit your needs service-by-service and accept the inevitable truth that your rate will increase after year one, no matter what.
Own Your Own Equipment – Modems And Routers
The default of any service provider is to lease you low-quality equipment (a router and modem) and include a leasing fee in your monthly bill (sometimes hidden and fixed). However, there are Many Benefits to Not Leasing Your Equipment. If the modem is yours, you can get a standard modem that’s not one of these clunky all-in-ones. The modems themselves just take that incoming IP address and pass it along to a router that you also own, managing the network within your house yourself.
Your router’s going be what determines the number of devices that can connect and how far WiFi travels. Purchasing your own, quality router ensures wifi will go further than with the very low-quality router-modem combo that would be provided.
We’ll be frank – managed networks, or those where you provide your own equipment, are not a cheap solution. They are, however, more reliable, they save you money on leasing fees in the long run, and keep your devices more secure. They also allow you the capability to extend your WiFi throughout your estate. You pay more upfront because you’ll need an integrator or IT guy to install the equipment. They will then act as your technology monitor, detecting, troubleshooting and solving problems with your network as they arrive.
We always recommend a Ubiquiti managed network. We find the equipment extremely reliable and it works especially well with Grande, Spectrum and Google Fiber.
How Much Data (MBPS) Does My House Need?
Many people wonder if raising their package to 1,000 mbps is the way to improve their connection speeds. The truth is, it’s usually overkill and unnecessary. Your data is pretty dependent on your infrastructure and whether or not your network is managed. With a strong system set up, that has a high-quality router, allowing numerous device connections and WiFi reaching your whole home, you won’t really notice the difference between say 400Mbps and 1000Mbps.
To find a realistic number for your family, start by making a list of activities by person in the home. What does your family use your data for? How many gamers live in the house? What gaming platforms are they using? Is it a lower bandwidth data platform like a Nintendo Switch, or is it a high demand gaming system like Xbox or PlayStation 4. Once you have all the numbers in order, use that information in a minimum recommendation quiz to calculate. Just keep in mind that anything over a 100 megabits per second speed is an almost unnoticeable difference.
We found this article pretty helpful when it comes to breaking down the actual language of internet speeds and measurements.
TV And Internet Provider Break Downs
(Click on Provider for Details and Breakdown)AT&T – Neighborhood Exclusivity, Data Throttling, and Good TVSpectrum – Flexible Equipment, No Data Throttling, Horrible TVGoogle Fiber – Game-Changing Speeds, Great Connections, Great HardwareGrande Communications – Boutique Offerings, Mesh Compatibility, App Linking Smart TV
IS GOOGLE FIBER AVAILABLE IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD?
IS SPECTRUM AVAILABLE IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD?
IS GRANDE AVAILABLE IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD?
IS AT&T UVERSE AVAILABLE IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD?