Broadband

What options do I have for high speed internet?

Spectrum

Episode 1611

Matt from Anaheim, CA

Matt was told by Spectrum that they'll have to trench in order to get his internet access into his office building, and it's going to take 60 days to do. It doesn't make sense why can't they just route the cable from the pole? Leo says that Spectrum is going to do what they're going to do, but that doesn't mean they're the only game in town. Look for alternatives. You can go to BroadbandReports.com and see what internet access is available in your area. Talk to your building's supervisor to see what choices are available coming into it.

Why is My Internet Speed So Slow?

Speed Test

Episode 1607

Ryan from California

Ryan got a new modem because his ISP is now giving him faster download speeds. But when he plugs in his router, it slows down to a crawl. Leo says that since the router is new, it should be fine. Try a different ethernet cable. If the cable is old, it may not handle the bandwidth. Then, try another computer and see if you can replicate the issue. If you can't, then that will point to something on your computer. It may be the ethernet port is too old. Also, update the firmware of your router.

What's a Good Cheap Basic Internet Plan?

Internet of Things

Episode 1607

John from Mangum, Oklahoma

John wants to get a basic internet that doesn't offer TV or phone or anything else: just basic internet. Leo says that ISPs tend to charge you more for basic internet, vs. one that offers a bundle with phone and TV service. But they are required to offer "dry loop" internet service which may be cheaper than a plan with phone and TV service. Your other option is to use your cell service since it has data anyway. MINT Mobile is a possible solution. They are much more affordable, starting at $15 a month. Ideal, when money is tight.

How can I get faster upload speeds?

Ethernet cables

Episode 1558

Rick from Brentwood, CA

Rick wants an internet service that will give him high speed uploading options. Leo says that Rick's options are to buy business class service. There's no bandwidth caps, and they will commit to a specific speed. He'll pay more, but for business it's worth it, especially because the uploads are faster. He should check out dslreports.com. He can search by zip code and read reviews from customers. Another choice is fiber, if he can get it.

Why is my broadband speed so inconsistent?

Network cable

Episode 1542

Don from Mission Viejo, CA

Don wants to put a flat screen in his back yard, and he wants to use the internet to get content on it. That means he'll need to improve his Wi-Fi. He bought the Google Wi-Fi mesh system to do just that, and he likes it. Leo says Mesh is an improvement for every home, and it's worth the price. But Don wants to know why his speed tests are always different. How can he get a true reading on internet bandwidth speeds? Leo says his ISP will always tell him the maximum possible speeds, not a consistent bandwidth speed from day to day.

How do I stop drop outs in my internet access?

Episode 1535

Jonathan from New Jersey

Rich is starting to get a lot of drop outs of his internet access. He gets an alarm on his mesh router whenever it happens, and he's been told the problem is with Comcast, not his router. Leo says that it is then required of Comcast to fix it. Leo recommends getting your own cable modem. Check with Comcast and see which DOCSIS III cable modems are supported. Not only will you get a newer modem, but you'll also pay $10 a month less in modem rental fees.

Do I need both Wi-Fi and a hardwired connection?

Ethernet cable

Episode 1532

Dee Dee from Pasadena,CA

Dee Dee is moving into an office that's promising free Wi-Fi and hardwired internet. Does she need both? Leo says that she's probably getting local service and she can connect either way. Hardwired connections will be faster and she won't have to deal with congestion. This could also mean they are just providing the wired infrastructure, and she'll still have to buy her own internet to use with it. Or, they may be offering a free public Wi-Fi. Leo recommends checking on that. She should also do a speed test, and ask if they have bandwidth caps.

Is Verizon 5G Home Internet a big deal?

Cell tower

Episode 1523

Greg from Chino, CA

Greg wants to know if 5G Home Internet is a game changer. Rich says that Verizon is testing 5G Home Internet in five cities around the country. 300/1000 down for $50. Sounds good, but that's ideal bandwidth. Is it a game changer? Well, only if it's available where you live. And 5G requires a lot more antennas, every few hundred feet. So it'll be awhile before it's widespread and Rich doesn't see it happening any time soon. If it's available, sign up.

New York State Kicks Out Spectrum Cable

Charter Spectrum logo

Episode 1510

The state of New York has voted to kick cable provider Spectrum out of the state, after the ISP failed to create a high speed network in rural areas. The company will also have to pay a $3 million penalty, and continue to operate until the New York Public Service Commission finds a company to replace them. New York made a provisional approval of the merger of Spectrum and Charter Communications, but without the rural internet agreement, the state has revoked that approval and kicked them out.