Internet and Cable Puzzle


Dual blog, the first part was written by Tamara of WonderMoms.ca and second half is from Bob Minhas of AlphaStarr Technical Solutions.

Are we being taken to the movies, or to the cleaners?

I am sure we have all asked that question of our in home communication and entertainment services. As someone who operates a business from a home office, getting the best value for Internet services is of utmost importance. The level of service and more importantly the speed of service are the two key elements to consider when negotiating your so-called good deal.

We were with a cable provider for many years for our entire in home services, cable TV, phone and Internet. In the beginning, we thought we were getting a good deal for the package we had ordered. However, as time wore on we were being nickeled and dimed to death, with increases in our bill. Parts of the bill were at a certain price for a finite period of time, and then increased. I just want it to be reliable with no down time or slow downs in service. Is that really too much to ask?

We engineered a change last year from cable provided services and switched it all to a national phone company who claims to provide all the same services at a better price with quicker download speeds than you would get from cable. The first week of the switch was in a word, EPIC! Anything that could have gone wrong did. We were subjected to a failure of Internet for a period of one week. It amounted to nothing more than the right hand not knowing what the left hand was up to. To say that that failure took our relationship to new limits with Internet providers is an understatement.

Over the past week or so, I have been making inquiries as to what people pay for Internet. I was absolutely shocked to see the wide range of costs for "so-called" high-speed service. What is considered high speed? I wish that there were transparency with the providers. Why is there such a disparity and range of speeds for the same service? I mean does it really cost more to provide faster service; I bet it doesn't? I think we are being taken to the cleaners.

I have conducted speed tests on my Internet service and have continually gotten readings ranging from 5.3-5.7 mbps. I didn't know what to compare it to, so I began the research, hoping to get to the bottom of it. Was I ever shocked to see how much faster my friends services were. A lot of people were experiencing speeds like mine. However, in many cases, speeds as much as 8 times faster were being reported.

I hope this blog will be taken as an invitation to comment and compare services. I would also hope service providers are listening in, as we your devoted customers are sick and tired of being fleeced. Faster Internet service should not cost you a king's ransom.



Bob Minhas, owner of AlphaStarr Technical Solutions provides his professional input into Internet Service Providers.
Welcome to AlphaStarr Technical Solutions. Our goal is to provide you with the technical support you've been dreaming of. How do we do it? We use our Facebook page to "Crowd source" answers from our team members or our strategic alliances within the industry whom we've added as "Friends" on Facebook to help develop the right answer for your question.

So if you have an issue with your Computer, Website or Mobile Device? We can help. What about a Security System question. Thought about an alarm system or a self-managed camera system? Ask away! Trying to figure out a problem with your phone? Post now! Let's chat about all the major and small phone providers out there. And finally what about Home Theatre. How do you know you need Home Theatre help? Easy...do you have a TV? Drop us a line!

We look forward to reading a lot from the WonderMoms family as with all the work we've done with Tamara, we've learned along the way that WonderMom's are smart women who can easily manage Tech. They just need someone to show their hubby the instructions! ;) Visit us today at
https://www.facebook.com/bobminhas.ca and let's get chatting! 
It's pretty hard to compare internet services with even those on the same street as you because every user has a different environment these ISP's work within. Remember that the Internet signal gets to your home over some physical medium whether its phone, cable or even fiber. And everyone's home can have so many different "points of failure" in between.

From the ISP central office to the hub on your block (big green or brown box), users have to consider the distance being travelled in between. The further the distance, the harder that signal has to work to get there, and will likely be less available then someone who lives closer to this hub.

Then there is not only the distance between the street hub to the house to consider, but the quality and age of that cable. Is it really old cable? Has it been damaged over the years from digging, lawn aeration, driveway or curb work or even weather? By weather, I mean do you notice your Internet worse during heavy rain or really warm or cold weather?

Next we need to think about the connection from outside your home to inside your home. Right up to the jack on the wall we need to consider distance, age and quality there as well. Have you made your own connections with splitters? Have you painted over these jacks? Did you buy pieces of cable from the dollar store?

And finally, remember the ISP Modem, Your Account Settings and even the use of third party Routers and Switches can all be factors that can affect the level of speed you get on your high speed internet.

Now some of these are the responsibility of the ISP to maintain, and some are yours. Do you think you'd have the ability to troubleshoot any of that yourself?

The true measure of our Internet Signal should be are we getting what we need from it. Not a number. If you're not satisfied with your Internet service whether it's the same speed or reliability as your neighbor, that is still something you need to let your ISP know and research what your options are to get that level of satisfaction again.

AlphaStarr Technical Solutions
Your Technical Concierge

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