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Choosing the best broadband provider for your needs

There are several important factors you need to consider when choosing between different broadband packages. The most important factors for most people tend to be cost, speed of connection and length of contract, but with so many apparently similar deals available, there are several further things you may wish to consider.

Selecting the right type of package

For light users, who tend to browse a little but do not need a heavy-user package, a basic package may well fulfill your needs. If you are not familiar with broadband, you are best looking for a package that is quick and easy to set up, is affordable and promises good, easily reachable customer service teams.

For those who tend to use broadband to download movies and music, or who like to partake of a lot of online gaming, you may require a package that allows heavy-use. If you are a business user, your needs may be different again and you may prefer to go for a package that includes provision for several email addresses, extra security and other convenient features.

Even if you are not a particularly heavy-user, if there are several people in your home who often all use the internet at the same time, you may need a heavy-use package. With several family members all surfing the web, watching TV on their laptops or playing games simultaneously, you may find a basic package cannot deal with the demand and speed and efficiency suffers. Check out these broadband deals from Sky to see if anything is suitable for your needs.

Mobile broadband

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This is great for those who mainly use the internet from a laptop and allows you to surf the web at home or while out and about. Mobile broadband uses a dongle which is inserted into the USB socket on your laptop. This allows you to access broadband from anywhere you receive mobile phone network coverage.

What is available in your neighbourhood?

Broadband coverage is increasing all the time and most UK properties are now covered. If you live in an urban or suburban area, you will probably have a choice of service providers to pick from. If you are in a rural area, or somewhere without much coverage, your choices may be limited. If you find you cannot get the package you want, do not despair as most providers are working constantly to improve their coverage.

How important is speed?

Speed may be very important to heavy or business users, but a connection speed of around 2Mb and up is generally enough to cope with most standard online activities. If you tend to download music or have a lot of online applications open at the same time, 8Mb should be enough to do everything you want to.

Getting started

Many providers will send you a wireless router for free when you sign up so expect this as a standard part of most packages. With the high level of competition in the broadband market these days, many providers will also offer discounted rates or other incentives for new subscribers to their services so shop around and see which deal works out best for you.

By Anderson

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