Broadband

What Are My Options for Streaming Video?

Frontier

Episode 1790

Terry from Southern California

Terry is a cord cutter and he doesn't think that he gets actual high-speed internet with Frontier. Leo says it's been proven that Frontier goes out of its way to keep bandwidth speeds slow for its customers to keep them from using too much. Leo also says that Frontier is being investigated by states for their terrible customer service and rampant internet outages. And they aren't alone. The US has the worst broadband of any country in the developed world. Leo says that one solution is Elon Musk's Starlink system, but at $100 a month, plus the cost of equipment, it's not cheap.

Should I Get T-Mobile Home Internet?

T-Mobile

Episode 1787

Lynn from Sylmar, TN

Lynn would like to get better internet service. Spectrum is terrible. Leo says that wireless internet is about to take off. Elon Musk's Starlink is a bit expensive at $99 a month, but it's going to get faster over time. Cellular internet is the next big thing, and T-Mobile is leading the way there. And it would be ideal for Lynn since he lives in a rural area. Not much competition on the cellular tower. So if you want to give it a go, it may be worth trying. 

Is It Normal to Get 20% Less Than the Advertised Bandwidth Speed?

WideOpenWest

Episode 1779

Paul from Columbus, OH

Paul is spending up to $75 a month for internet access. He's getting a notice for an alternate service for $60 a month, called WOW, and they are offering an Eero router to boot. They also promise 80% bandwidth speeds, or 800MB down. Leo says it's about right to have a 20% loss over time. But he gets a warning from his alarm service that it goes out. Leo says that Paul is using Ooma, and it could be that there's a thruput issue when balancing your ISP and your internet phone service, which your alarm uses.

Will Starlink Be a Good Internet Company?

Starlink

Episode 1773

DW from Morrison, CO

DW has preordered Starlink satellite internet and is waiting for his turn to get installed. Leo says it won't be cheap, at $500 for the gear and $99 a month for internet access, but Leo says that it's supporting SpaceX, and that's a good thing. Eventually, as more people come online, it'll probably go down in price. It's going to have to. But nobody really knows how fast it will be. 

Alphabet (Google) Grounds Loon

Loon

Episode 1764

Alphabet launched Project Loon, where they would bring the world broadband internet with weather balloons. It launched in 2013, and this week Google announced it was ending the program. They did use it during natural disasters in Central America and Africa, bringing short term internet to the regions during the first few days. But problems cropped up immediately as people couldn't afford the equipment, or simply wasn't interested. Then there's the fact that you can't really control the wind pushing weather balloons all over.

What is a Good Option For Broadband in a Rural Area?

Starlink

Episode 1752

Stacy from Greenville, MI

Stacy lives in rural Michigan and she has really slow internet. Leo says that broadband companies don't want to install high-speed internet into rural areas because there aren't enough customers to justify the cost. Will satellite be a good alternative? Leo says that thanks to Elon Musk's Starlink network it will be. But it's $99 a month and costs $600 in equipment. And the more satellites they put up, the faster it will get. They've only put up 10% of the satellites they want to so far.

Another option is LTE and 5G if she's close to a tower. 

What Are My Broadband Options?

Cox

Episode 1735

Ed from Henderson, NV

Ed is looking to cut the cable and is looking for options for the internet. DSLReports.com is where he can go to see what's available in the area. Leo recommends checking out AT&T U-Verse. They use fiber and it's very fast. Avoid Satellite. The latency and bandwidth caps are too great. Sadly, cable has no competition due to being granted a regional monopoly. But he can go with fiber or even wireless. DSL may be an option, but it gets slower the farther he is away from the central office.

What's the Fastest Internet Option For Living in a Remote Area?

Starlink

Episode 1735

Tom from Riverside, CA

Tom's son is moving to a rural area and they use rather slow radio-based ISPs. Leo says that the benefit of living in a rural area is the beautiful area. The downside is, that if there isn't a lot of people per square mile, broadband companies simply won't provide connectivity. So they end up with satellite, cellular, and radio-based alternatives. Cellphone internet is getting faster thanks to LTE and 5G. And it'll get faster. And thanks to Elon Musk's Starlink program, Satellite wifi is coming.

Is a cable bundle a good deal?

Spectrum Lifestyle

Episode 1734

Alex from Long Beach, CA

Alex wants to get Spectrum but they are pushing a bundle. Leo says that sometimes it's cheaper to get it with Phone service. But the catch is, the deal is only for the first year, and then the price goes up. So you have to call them a week before the deal expires and threaten to cancel unless they give you a better deal. They will also give you a cable modem and router and there should be an ethernet out connection that you can plug into your own router to split off the data. You want to be sure you have at least 5 MB up for video streaming.