Steve wants to know if there's a device that will give him internet without paying a monthly fee. Leo says that Freedom Pop promises internet, but understand it'll be filled with ads. There's also NetZero. Another idea is to spend time at your public library or local wifi hotspot. Some cities also offer free public wifi all around their municipality.
Chris' internet company offers 400 Mbps. Is that a noticeably better speed than 100 Mbps for everyday use? Leo says it probably isn't for the money he's paying. The real key is the upload speed, because if it still takes him an hour to upload something, and he's paying for download speed that he isn't really using, then what good is it?
Shelly has Windows 10 and Microsoft EDGE, but she's having issues with her internet access. The website pages keep timing out. Leo says that antivirus software like Trend Micro may be working too zealously to protect you. Leo recommends only using Microsoft Defender on Windows 10. So try disabling Trend Micro or removing it and see if that helps. Check to see if other devices can get online, like your mobile phone. If you can, then it's a Windows issue. If not, then you're not connected at all. Are you sure you have connected your computer to your modem?
Brian has an Apple Airport and every time he gets on the network with his phone, the internet drops out. Leo says to check his DNS to see if it's properly configured. That can be found in network settings. He should also try rebooting his router. Steve Gibson has a tool called DNS Benchmark at GRC.com which can tell him how well his DNS settings are responding.
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.
It wasn't that long ago that Google pulled out of China because of the country's authoritarian demands and acts of censorship. Now reports are that the company that once said "do no evil" as their slogan, is developing a special Google browser for China that will allow the country to strictly control the flow of information online. So much for doing no evil.
Ron is going on a cruise soon and he wants to know if the Wi-Fi on the ship will be usable. Leo says it's always slow because satellite connections are slow, with a lot of latency, and on top of that, he'll be sharing bandwidth with 4,000 people. The best he can do is get up in the middle of the night and use it. The worst part is, it's also very expensive. But when he's in port, he'll have access to mobile data.
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.
Jean wants to know if she should buy her own modem or not. She has DSL. Leo says that since she has DSL, she should just stick with the modem that DSL Extreme provided to her. Generally when Leo talks about replacing the modem to avoid the rental fee, he's talking about cable modems. He wouldn't mess with a DSL modem. As far as the router goes, Leo would recommend Jean get the TP-Link Archer C8, which is less than $80.
Mimi recently bought a Ring Video Doorbell 2, but she doesn't have internet at home. Leo says she would have to have internet access at home to get it to work. It has to have Wi-Fi to connect. She could use a cellphone in hotspot mode, but that would be as expensive, or more than just having a home internet connection. She could talk to her neighbors to see if she can use their Wi-Fi to connect her doorbell. Another option is to use a MiFi card. That would enable her to connect up to five devices, including the doorbell.