Broadband

New York State Kicks Out Spectrum Cable

Episode 1510

Charter Spectrum logo

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.

What happened to my DSL Extreme internet?

Jane from Oceanside

Episode 1470

Jane had DSLExtreme and she recently lost access to it. She says that DSLExtreme wants to come into her home and install fiber. Is that a good idea? Leo says it will be a bit more expensive. One possibility is that AT&T may be up to something. THey could be cutting the copper in your neighborhood, which is a bad business practice. AT&T is cutting the copper in your neighborhood and trying to get you to sign up for uVerse, which uses fiber optics. It's just like cable, only faster.

Why don't I get the internet speed I was promised?

Episode 1463

Johnny from Atlanta, GA
Ethernet Cable

Johnny upgraded his Comcast internet bandwidth to gigabit service. But when he went to Fast.com to test it, it was only a 1/3 the promised speed. Is he getting ripped off? Leo says that Wi-Fi can slow down bandwidth a bit due to congestion. He should try hardwiring to his modem with ethernet and see if it speeds up. The age of his computer network card can also slow it down if it's older. He would need a gigabit network card to handle the throughput.

Why is my internet dropping out?

Episode 1447

Rene from Los Angeles, CA
Ethernet cable

Rene's internet access disconnects several times a day. Leo says he has the same problem and he knows it's the ISP. It could also be his mesh router, however. But the only way to check that is to use another router to eliminate it from the mix. Could it be a DDOS attack? Leo doesn't think so unless he knows of someone who is targeting him to keep him off the net. That's unlikely, though. It's probably just his ISP having issues.

Is there a better alternative to internet than my business solution?

Episode 1444

Hans from Los Angeles, CA
Cell tower

Hans is having issues with poor internet service in the mall where his store is located. He only gets 1.5 MBps for $85. Leo says that's awful. Leo says there's bound to be better options in his area, but he's stuck there in the mall. Leo says that's a scam where the mall makes an exclusive deal with an ISP and he's stuck with no other option. Maybe he could get several tenants together and go directly to the landlord of the mall and demand they offer a better option.

How can I get broadband in a rural area?

Episode 1429

Sean from Mechanicsville, VA
Network cable

Sean has moved to a new house and there's no internet access. He has a My Home Verizon cellular option, but it has slowed down. Leo says that living in rural areas is a problem for broadband because there aren't enough people within a certain area to justify the expense to laying the cable. He could talk to his neighbors about sharing the cost to pay for it. Co-ops are popular in rural areas. It's not cheap, but that's what people do.

How can I get broadband in a rural area?

Episode 1429

Tom from Charlotte, NC
Network cable

Tom works at home, using remote desktop with his clients. He's going to be moving to a rural area and he needs high speed internet. What can he do? Leo says that rural areas are a challenge for high speed internet because there's simply not a lot of people in an area to justify the cost of laying down the wire. Tom should check out DSLReports.com to find out what's available in the area he's going. Another site to check out is broadbandnow.com.

What are my options for canceling my ISP?

Gloria from North Hollywood, CA

Episode 1423

Gloria wants to get rid of her ISP and change her email. Leo says if she's going to get rid of her ISP and its email, Leo recommends going with Gmail first and setting it up to get the email off her old email account. Her ISP is DSL Extreme. Leo says that DSL Extreme is a good provider, but if she's having issues, it may not be their fault. It may be the carrier that DSL Extreme is piggy backing on, which is usually AT&T. They have to allow them to carry it, but they don't really want to share. So they make it difficult.

Can I speed up my streaming with a new video card?

Episode 1400

Dave from Paris, CA
Ethernet

Dave wants to improve the video streaming on his computer. Will an updated video capture card work for that? Leo says no. It really comes down to his internet connection speed. The GPU doesn't even come into the mix, as it's just blasted onto the screen. So the only way to improve the streaming is to improve his bandwidth. That means he'll have to pay for faster internet.

What is considered fast internet?

Episode 1382

Vladimir from Orange County, CA
Ethernet

Vladimir is thinking of renting an office and his ISP is offering 1 Mbps. Leo says that won't work, it's too slow. He'll want at least 10-15 Mbps, which is a typical internet speed. He also may be stuck with bandwidth caps and that could add up, so he should look in the rental agreement. He may be better off using his cellphone internet in hotspot mode. It'll be faster, especially with unlimited data plans that are now popular, and overages are much cheaper. He can also use a MiFi card, which will enable him to connect up to five devices to it.