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ISP Frequently Asked Questions

What is an ISP Service?
An ISP, or internet service provider , is a company that provides user's access to the Internet. Internet Service providers generally charge a fee to their customer's each month. There are also free ISPs available. Internet Service Providers also offer services to their clients that relate to the internet. These services may include domain name registration, email accounts and software, web site hosting and business services.

What's more popular, Broadband ISPs or Dial-Up ISPs ?
The best way to determine which ISP you choose, is to think about what you need instead of what is popular. If you need an inexpensive or free internet service provider and the speed at which you connect is not an issue, then you should consider dial up internet access for your home. There are many excellent dial up ISPs that offer a range of services to meet your needs. If you are a frequent internet user who needs to transfer files or perhaps work from your home, you should consider broadband ISPs. A broadband connection comes in many flavors, including ISDN, DSL , cable , wireless cable or Ethernet. These options range in prices per month and you have many companies from which to choose.

What are the broadband internet service types?
Broadband internet access comes in several forms. They include:
      * Cable
      * DSL (Digital Subscriber Line)
      * ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network)
      * Wireless
      * Ethernet

DSL or Cable, Which is better?
DSL, or digital subscriber line offers high speed digital access to the internet over your phone lines. Cable internet access offers access to the internet through the cable television infrastructure. Many consumers find the choice between these two confusing.

Internet access provided using DSL and cable modems is much faster than dial-up, however the speeds offered by DSL and cable modems are different, and in fact, vary depending on several factors. The downfall of DSL for internet is that the distance between the user's home and/or office and the phone company's central office is a primary factor in not only deciding if DSL access is available, but is also a huge factor in determining its speed. Cable modems are not dependent on proximity to deliver consistent data access and speed.

Additionally, because DSL technology is dependent on accessing the central office of the local phone company, competitive DSL providers, to provide service, must coordinate with local phone companies. You should find out what your proximity is and ask about speeds before committing to DSL.

What is Satellite Internet?
Satellite internet access is available for people who cannot connect to the internet via "terrestrial" means. This could mean they are in a vessel or location that moves frequently, or they may live in a remote location without access to phone or land lines.

Why are there so many types of DSL like ADSL, SDSL, etc?
Because DSL connectivity and speed is dependent on the proximity of the user to the central telephone company office, different DSL technologies have been created to enhance or adapt to improve the end users experience. These technologies include:
       * ADSL, or Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line
       * HDSL, or High Bit Rate Digital Subscriber Line
       * RADSL, or Rate Adaptive Digital Subscriber Line
       * SDSL, or Symmetric Digital Subscriber Line
       * VDSL, or Very high speed Digital Subscriber Line
       * G.SHDSL, also known as ITU-T which is a standardized replacement for early proprietary SDSL .

Why can I not get Broadband where I live?
In rural areas, cable companies and phone companies may not have installed the technology necessary for broadband internet access. This is because they may have trouble covering the cost of the initial technology investment with subsequent digital internet subscribers.


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