Important Terms to Know about Online Computer Access Providers
The following terms should help you better understand the products and services that online access providers offer in your area:
ISP: ISP stands for Internet Service Provider. This is the company that gives you access to the Internet.
Broadband: Broadband is an Internet connection that exceeds standard signal rates. It was introduced in the late 1990s through cable Internet services. It did not become popular, however, for several years. Broadband service makes it possible for people to stream movies and download content quickly.
Dial Up: An Internet connection that access online content through a telephone line. This was the first way for individuals and businesses to access online content. Today, however, few people use dial up connections because they are significantly slower than more recently developed options.
Hosting Service: This is a service that gives you access to Web space that you can use to make a website or save documents. Some ISPs provide basic hosting services with their plans. For a larger website, though, you will likely need a third-party hosting service that can give you access to more server space.
DSL: DSL originally stood for "digital subscriber loop." Today, however, it means "digital subscriber line." DSL uses phone connections to access the Internet. Unlike dial up services, though, it has a much higher data bit rate. DSL does not require a dedicated phone line. A person can use DSL to access the Internet while talking on the phone. This is possible because DSL uses a higher frequency that does not interfere with typical phone use.
The US Internet Service Provider Association represents the common policy and legal interests of internet service provider companies. The US ISPA also monitors the international concerns and developments of concern to members.
Even if you have a computer, you still need an online access provider to connect to the Internet. There are many computer online access providers listed in your online directory and on the Internet. Some people find that it is hard for them to determine which company has the high speed cable and DSL connections that they need because there are so many choices. If you follow these guidelines, though, you should be able to find a provider with the right services and prices for you. When you first contact the companies, you will want to determine how much experience they have by asking them how long they have been in business. Those with several years of experience should be able to offer you high speed DSL and broadband cable access as well as dial up phone service. Ask the ISPs if they give you free equipment like wi fi and modems so that you have the items you need to connect to the network fast. You should also make sure that they have access in your area. Some companies offer nationwide wireless service, but you should check with them to make sure, especially if you live in a rural area. Some companies have maps that show the areas that they offer satellite access. You should also find out if they have any cheap bundles that can help you save on the cost of the services that you want. Some ISPs now include cable television and phone service, so you'll want to compare the prices of everything that you need instead of just one or two services.