This brief information is intended to assist you in understanding the basics of broadband (just another name for internet connection – other than dialup), and locating and choosing the services for domestic use. Here are some links as a good start:
The Australian ISP Directory – find Internet Service Providers in your area. Narrow down the search results by unchecking the connection types.
At time of writing some major providers I can recommend are:
- Aussie Broadband (nation wide company but has an office in Morwell)
- Virgin (uses Optus network – great coverage and customer service)
Not recommended by this writer – expensive and terrible customer service: Optus or Telstra
Outdated, very slow and expensive (if you consider how much you pay for the amount of data you can download). Uses a modem that is either a box connected to the phone line and your computer or inbuilt into your computer. The modem ‘dials’ a phone number each time you want to connect to the internet. It was outmoded over ten years ago.
In brief, this type of internet connection uses your phone line. It’s fast and reliable. However, if you live outside a major town, you may find your telephone exchange has not bee upgraded to handle the new ADSL technology (no thanks to Telstra!).
A wireless transmitter/receiver installed on your roof . It requires direct line of site to the tower. The roof transmitter/receiver is connected by a lead to a router inside your house (a small box that connects to your computer via an Ethernet cord or by ‘internal’ wireless connection).
4G (mobile network)
These types of connections use either a USB dongle that you slot into the USB port of your computer, or a transmitter/receiver in your house. Often high connection speed fluctuations as it uses the mobile network that is shared by many others.
A dish is installed on your roof or a pole. It’s connected to a modem which is connected to a router, which in turn is connected to your computer. I have found satellite connections to not be as reliable as they can be affected by atmospheric conditions. Also, at time of writing, I couldn’t find a fast connection ‘plan’ that was value for money.
If the National Broadband Network comes into force in our area this will bring Australia into line with other ‘developed’ countries in terms of internet connectivity. Fingers crossed! Irrespective of what the Telstra propaganda machine purports, currently there is no other technology that can compare with the speeds that the NBN will provide to your house ie. not just to your local exchange.
Written by Andris Dinsbergs