Whether it's for work, play or both - getting the right broadband package in place which meets your household needs, ultimately saves on spending. Putting the right speed, bandwidth and contract length in place are all factors you will need to consider when taking out any broadband package.
Taking a close look at your individual broadband wants and needs can also prevent over spending on larger packages when a smaller one would do. Those looking to sign for the first time or renew their existing package might also wish to consider the following steps before they sign on the dotted line:
Who will be using my broadband?
Who spends the most time under your roof and what do they use the internet for? If you live alone, then it stands to reason the amount of time you spend on the web will probably be less than the average family of four. If your children are small, you may look to consider providers offering parental controls over those who don’t. For kids who are older but still at home, you don’t want to end up paying extra for downloads made from a range of web-enabled devices simultaneously when a large broadband package, which offers unlimited internet access, can be bought at a cheaper price to cover the lot.
What will they be using it for?
If you've never used the internet before then you might choose to start out small and go from there. An ASDL package might be considered in this instance. (More details below).
Movie buffs and frequent viewers of Netflix, Amazon Prime and other TV streaming services may otherwise wish to consider broadband options which offer unlimited downloads, of which there are many.
Family households or those where several adults live together under one roof might also do well to consider paying extra for fibre broadband, which is faster than standard broadband and saves time spent on buffering when multiple downloads are made at the same time.
Student households should also remember that contracts on a nine-month instead of a standard 12 or 18-month basis are also available for those keen to install broadband at their term-time address. This means not having to pay for it during the summer holidays, during which time occupants are more likely to be at home than in their student digs.
What kinds of broadband can I buy?
In practice, there are three main types of broadband:
- ADSL - transported down standard copper wires which already carry your phone line
- Cable - delivered by fibre and coaxial cables
- Fibre - involving clusters of fibre cables
Of the three, ASDL broadband is the most commonly available and often the cheapest – but also the slowest. Cable and fibre-based broadband aren't yet otherwise available to everyone – ASDL is sometimes the only feasible choice in remote areas, for example.
A combination of ASDL1 and ASDL2+ technology is also available in some regions, as a marginally faster option that ASDL1 alone.
Is my broadband my business?
If you're serious about your business, then you need to get serious about your broadband package too. Business broadband deals are not the same as domestic ones. Many offer additional features such as add-on webspace, e-mail addresses, fixed IP and other options. Some also provide commercial-grade security packages to help prevent data breaches, as well as enhanced customer support to help minimise any disruption to the day-to-day running of a business should the broadband connection fail for any reason.
Not many businesses today can exist without a fast, reliable internet connection, whether they’re home or office-based. If this is important to you, it’s worth bearing in mind that dedicated business broadband providers are available, alongside better-known mainstream providers, to help.
Whatever package you choose, don’t forget they can be changed and amended at any point, but you will probably be tied into the same provider for a certain amount of time, therefore it's important to check everything from customer service, reliability and cost before making your final decision.