Customer Service

What Equipment Do You Need For Internet

By David Krug David Krug is the CEO & President of Bankovia. He's a lifelong expat who has lived in the Philippines, Mexico, Thailand, and Colombia. When he's not reading about cryptocurrencies, he's researching the latest personal finance software. 23 minute read

The state of American internet service is disorganized, Nearly 24 percent of U.S. residents, per the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), lack access to broadband Internet (25 megabits per second or better).

For this abysmal quality of service, we are paying top dollar. According to the cost of living database Numbeo, an American pays $65.73 a month for a 60 Mbps connection, significantly higher than $43.16 in the United Kingdom, $25.78 in Mexico, or $6.48 in Russia.

Although there is little you can do to improve the state of the American Internet, you can save money on a connection.

How to Reduce the Cost of High-Speed Internet

There are numerous methods available to bring your Internet bill down to a more manageable level. In order to stop spending too much on Internet, you can attempt one or more of the following strategies.

1. Verify any subsidies

Subsidies can be used to offset the cost of Internet connectivity for low-income families. A variety of organizations, including the United States government, ISPs, and philanthropies, provide such services to the public.


Customers with low incomes can receive a discount on their phone or Internet service through a local provider thanks to the FCC’s Lifeline program. Clients who qualify can receive a monthly credit of up to $9.25 to use as payment.

If your annual income is less than or equal to 135% of the federal poverty level, or if you receive any other form of government assistance (such as Medicaid or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), then you are eligible to enroll in this program (SNAP, aka food stamps). The Lifeline website will help you locate local service providers who are taking part.

Advantages of Emergency Broadband

While many homes were having trouble paying for Internet service due to the COVID-19 epidemic, the FCC launched the Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) in May 2021 to help alleviate this burden. 

Discounts on broadband Internet service of up to $50 per month are available to qualified homes, and discounts of up to $75 per month are available to households located on qualifying tribal grounds.

There are additional benefits to this program as well. For qualified families, participating service providers will offer a one-time discount of up to $100 on the purchase of a laptop, desktop, or tablet computer. It’s required that they pay at least $10, but no more than $50, of the total price of the gadget.

On May 12, 2021, the EBB officially became law. If a family’s income is at or below 135% of the federal poverty level, or if they receive food stamps, Medicaid, or the Lifeline program, they may qualify. If you lost a significant amount of money due to the epidemic, you may also qualify.

Applying is possible either directly to one of the participating ISPs or online at

Internet Essentials by Comcast

Comcast’s Internet Essentials program offers low-income consumers 50 Mbps broadband for $9.95 per month. In addition, for $150, the initiative will provide low-cost home PCs.

To be eligible, you must be a resident of Comcast’s service region and not a customer for the past 90 days. There are additional requirements, such as qualification for SNAP or the National School Lunch Program (NSLP). See the website for details and an online application.

Broadband Internet Assistance

The Internet Assist program provides low-cost 30Mbps service to households who receive certain forms of government assistance. Spectrum isn’t transparent about its pricing and won’t tell you how much it will cost each month.

You can’t be an existing Spectrum customer or get SSI to qualify, but you can enroll in the NSLP. Check online to discover if the service is provided in your area.

The AT&T Access

In California, AT&T’s Access program is available to SNAP and SSI recipient households. Families with children enrolled in Head Start or the National School Lunch Program, as well as those with incomes below a particular threshold, are now included in the program’s coverage during the COVID-19 epidemic. Limits based on family size and income are listed on AT&T’s website.

Access typically offers Internet service with speeds up to 3 Mbps for $5 monthly, and speeds between 3 Mbps and 5 Mbps for $10 monthly. However, for a limited time, families can obtain speeds up to 25Mbps for only $10 per month. There is no charge for either the installation or the wireless service within the house. Online applications are welcome.


Cox’s Connect2Compete program helps low-income families with school-aged children gain access to high-speed Internet and Wi-Fi at home at a reduced cost. It’s meant to facilitate student access to the Internet in the United States for academic purposes. 

The service, which costs $9.95 a month, offers high-speed Internet with download speeds of at least 25 Mbps. Those families are required to be located within Cox’s service region, but they cannot be existing or former subscribers (within the past 90 days). 

Furthermore, they need to be enrolled in at least one of the following federal programs and have a kid in grades K 12:

  • SNAP
  • NSLP
  • The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC)
  • Head Start
  • Public housing
  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
  • The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)

The signup process is simple and fast on the Cox website if you qualify. The enrollment of your child in school and your family’s participation in government services may be required.

The Fios Forward

Fios Forward provides an additional discount on Internet access for new and existing Verizon Fios customers who are also Lifeline subscribers. Customers must join Lifeline before they may sign up for a compatible Fios Internet bundle. 

There are three potential outcomes for them to consider:

  • 200Mbps Internet for $19.99 per month
  • 400Mbps Internet for $44.99 per month
  • Gigabit (Gbps) Internet for $69.99 per month

Fios has already accounted for the Lifeline reduction, so these are the final pricing. Customers of Fios Forward can also save on Verizon Unlimited Wireless plans.


EveryoneOn is a non-profit organization that works to get households online all around the country. Its website helps people in need, such as those living in public housing, veterans, and TANF recipients, connect with local service providers who might offer them discounts. The site’s Find Offers option will let you know if you’re eligible for any of these programs.

2. Deal With Your Service Provider

If you can’t find any funding options that work for you, try negotiating a lower rate with your ISP. When comparing Internet service providers, the price you see isn’t always the price you pay. 

Internet service providers (ISPs) would rather not lose clients than gain new ones, thus they may reduce your monthly fee in an effort to keep you as a subscriber. The power of negotiation can have a significant impact on the final cost of your meal. 

BroadbandNow’s editor-in-chief, Tyler Cooper, says it’s the reason why he spends $47 per month on the same internet service that his next-door neighbor pays $86 for. Prepare well for the meeting by researching competitive offers. Then, employ savvy negotiation techniques to secure the price you desire.


If your Internet service provider is worried about losing your business to a rival that offers lower rates, it may likely lower its own rates to attract and keep you as a customer. You can start a negotiation off on the right foot by telling the customer care representative that you’ve found a better offer elsewhere and asking if they can match it.

Many people in the United States today can pick between two or more broadband Internet service providers. The FCC found that in every single census block in the United States, residents can choose among multiple service providers who offer fixed broadband at speeds of up to 25 Mbps.

The Institute for Local Self-Reliance claims that the FCC’s numbers are incorrect in a report from the year 2020. The report states that 83% of Americans can only get broadband Internet from one company. Even if some of these people can utilize a rival DSL (digital subscriber line) service, the institute claims that they still can’t use broadband because it’s too sluggish and unstable.

In spite of this, you can force providers to fight for your business if you are one of the fortunate few in the United States who have access to more than one option. Use BroadbandNow’s online comparison tool to learn about available Internet service providers in your area. After entering your zip code, the service providers in your area will be displayed.

Next, visit the websites of the various service providers to learn more about the rates and programs they offer in your area. Because many ISPs provide discounts to attract new customers, the pricing you see may be far lower than what you’re currently paying. Noting the lowest price you find from a different provider will help you negotiate a better bargain with your existing ISP.

Use Promotions To Your Advantage

It’s a good idea to look into the discounts your Internet service provider is offering at the same time you’re comparing rates elsewhere. You may be eligible for a discount on your Internet service provider’s monthly fee for a period of six months to a year if you ask for it.

Be cautious to read the fine print of any discounts to get an accurate idea of the overall price. Advertisements online and in print often fail to mention that additional charges, such as sales tax or mandatory line fees, may apply.

Locking at a low initial rate is often a feature of promotional offers. During that time, your pricing will remain the same, but you won’t be able to cancel the contract if a better offer comes up. You should still try to secure a lower price if at all possible. 

Consumer Federation of America head of research Mark Cooper tells tech-savvy media and research firm Government Technology that rate hikes are more likely than rate decreases.

Find out what the regular price will be when the sale ends. When advertising packages that include phone service, Internet service, and television service, ISPs often advertise a lower monthly rate (say, $80) for the first two years of service but fail to specify that once the first two years are up, the monthly rate will increase to $125. 

Sometimes, you have to phone your Internet service provider (ISP) to find out that information, as not even the fine print can supply it.

Play Up Your Loyalty or Make Threats of Switching

When you’ve done your research and chosen the finest plan among those offered by your preferred ISP and its competitors, it’s time to give them a call. Make it clear to the representative that you’re interested in the same offer and will be looking elsewhere if you don’t get it.

Try calling and asking for the retention department or customer resolution department. Staff in this section are authorized to provide discounts and other incentives in an effort to retain clients.

Employees in the retention department depend on repeat business for their income, thus they will do anything to maintain you as a customer. According to Slate, their compensation consists of a modest base cost plus a bonus tied to the number of consumers they are successful in convincing to continue using the service. 

That makes them a nuisance to deal with if you want to cancel, but useful if you’re attempting to get a better offer from your ISP. If you want to get a better bargain from your Internet service provider (ISP), threatening to leave is only useful if you actually intend to do so. 

If you’re set on sticking with your current Internet service provider (ISP), you should take the opposite approach and emphasize your dedication to them. Emphasize the length of time you’ve done business with them and see if you can negotiate a discount or other perk as a loyal customer.

Be Respectful But Firm

Be kind and respectful to the ISP representative no matter how you decide to approach the situation. Reps are often less eager to engage with you if you’re upset when trying to negotiate, even if you have a real cause for your frustration, such as extended wait times or difficulties with your service.

Naturally, there’s a difference between politeness and weakness. As the CEO of Ask For It, a negotiation training organization, professional negotiator Alexandra Dickinson tells CNBC that the greatest strategy in any negotiation is to avoid being a bully or a doormat. 

Keep your composure and be firm. I would like, rather than I want, I need, or I deserve, is how Dickinson suggests beginning requests. In a way that is both straightforward and respectful, that does the trick. 

Furthermore, if the first representative you speak with is uncooperative, gently request to speak with a manager.

Call Back Frequently

Even if you satisfy all of the guidelines, your ISP still might not provide you with a discount. In 2010, when I attempted to negotiate a reduced rate with my Internet service provider, I encountered exactly this situation. 

When the initial representative was unable to help me, I informed them of the competitive offer, asked nicely if I could get a similar bargain, and requested to talk to a supervisor. Not a chance.

And this is where I went wrong; I mistook their response for a definitive verdict. I should have tried calling again a few days later to get in touch with a different person.

One reason is that internet service provider (ISP) discounts are always shifting. It’s possible that there will be a special offer that wasn’t available the first time you called but will be when you call again. Another factor is that some salespeople are more helpful than others, especially those who are having a terrible day.

It’s not over until it’s over, so don’t stop talking just because you reached an agreement. ISPs frequently provide promotional rates for a limited time, thinking you won’t notice that they expire after a few months have passed. 

Make sure that doesn’t happen by reminding yourself to contact the ISP before the deal expires. After then, you can start the process over again to settle on a suitable rate.

When There Is a Problem, Complain

Also, you should contact your ISP if you’ve been experiencing any issues with your connection. When your Internet service provider (ISP) has temporary slowdowns or service interruptions, it is entirely legitimate to request a credit to your bill. Given that you were only able to use the Internet for 28 days out of the month, it seems wasteful to pay for the full month’s service.

It is important to document any issues you encounter while using the Internet. Whenever your Internet connection suddenly stops working or sluggishly speeds up, jot down the time and date, and keep checking back throughout the day to see when it’s back to normal. Call your Internet service provider (ISP) at the end of the month and request service credit for the time you were unable to use.

A regular Internet speed test will help you determine whether or not your Internet service provider is living up to its claims. Fast or Speedtest will allow you to achieve this. Both sites can report your Internet response time or “ping”, download speed, and upload speed in about a minute.

Contact your Internet service provider (ISP) if you consistently experience speeds that are much lower than what you are paying for. To get your speed up to par or your bill down, ask them to do one of those things.

Take a Call Recording

When it comes to helping their customers, ISPs don’t have the finest reputation. In many cases, the savings promised by an ISP’s sales staff disappear after you receive your monthly payment. You’ll be back where you started if you call the billing department to complain and they declare they have no record of the offer.

It is recommended that you record your phone call with your ISP when haggling over fees in order to avoid this issue. How to record a call on an iPhone or Android is explained in detail on Digital Trends. In some jurisdictions, it is unlawful to record a phone call without the permission of all people involved.

After the call is over, record it and then store the file on your device. You can also negotiate with the ISP using webchat and save a transcript of the session for further reference. The video or transcript will serve as evidence that the company agreed to the terms you negotiated should your ISP try to back out of the agreement.

Use A Negotiator

The good news is that you may hire a third-party firm to perform the haggling for you if all this sounds like too much work or if you lack confidence in your negotiating abilities. 

BillCutterz and Truebill are two examples of organizations that can contact your service providers (like your cell phone or internet provider) and negotiate better rates for you.

You can just send in your monthly payments and let the corporation take care of the annoying phone menus, hold music, and unhelpful staff. It’s risk-free to give it a shot since if it can’t cut your expenditures in half, it won’t charge you for the service.

A portion of the savings you realize in the first year may be invoiced to you if the company negotiates a discount for you. If you want to save money before signing up for one of these services, it’s important to do your own research.

May save you $5 or $200 per month on only one bill, claims BillCutterz. If it reduces a charge by $30 per month but then takes $15 per month as its cut, your save is $15. The service is more expensive than the savings you would get if you were able to negotiate a $20 monthly reduction in your ISP payment on your own.

Still, you should value your time as much as anything else. Spending up to four hours comparing pricing, waiting in line, and chatting with customer service personnel could be worth it if it means saving $20 each month.

Turning the task off to a business might save you $15 monthly with minimal effort. Therefore, you would pay the difference ($5 monthly, or $60 per year) to avoid working those extra four hours. It’s a good deal if you think it’s worth $15 an hour to have someone else handle this responsibility for you.

You have nothing to lose by trying a service if you have already attempted to negotiate your Internet bill on your own and have been unsuccessful. They could help you save money, and if they don’t, you’re out nothing.

3. Purchase Only What You Need

It’s standard practice for your Internet service provider to try to sell you more premium features when you call them. 

A savvy sales agent could convince you that the bundle consisting of cable, phone, and 100 Mbps Internet is worth twice as much as the individual services if you call to negotiate a price on a simple 25 Mbps Internet connection with no frills.

Be ready for this con by deciding in advance the services you require and desire. Don’t give in and start paying for other stuff again.

Choose the Proper Speed

Now, you may choose from a plethora of Internet service providers (ISPs) that provide connections of 100 Mbps or more. There are even those with 1Gbps connections, which is incredibly fast. Although it seems like the extra cost for such rapidity would be worthwhile, in practice, it is probably not.

What you do online will determine the minimum and maximum speeds you require. Additionally, experts advise using speeds specific to each task at hand. 

Case in point:

  • Just Doing Some Surfing. AT&T claims that its customers can check their email at 0.5Mbps and surf the web at 1Mbps.
  • Soundtracks that play automatically online. According to Consumer Reports, the amount of data needed to stream music at a standard quality is little. Even 128 kilobits per second will do the trick. That’s less than one-eighth the speed of a modem with 1Mbps. If you want to stream music on AT&T, you’ll need at least 0.5Mbps of download speed.
  • Gambling on the Internet. Ping, download, and upload speeds are all system-specific in the world of gaming., however, states that 3Mbps for download, 1Mbps for upload, and a ping rate of 150 milliseconds are adequate for most online games. AT&T stresses the need of having at least 4Mbps of download speed once more.
  • Online video streaming. If you want to stream video in standard definition (SD), you need a connection speed of at least 1Mbps; if you want HD quality (8Mbps); and if you want ultra-HD quality (18Mbps), you need at least 18Mbps (also known as 4K). Depending on your needs, AT&T suggests 1.5Mbps for SD and 4Mbps for HD.
  • Videoconferencing. Work-related online virtual meetings can be just as bandwidth-intensive as high-definition video streaming. For successful Web conferencing with programs like Zoom or GoToMeeting, AT&T recommends a speed of 4Mbps or higher.

This is the minimum speed necessary for a single connection. It takes about 12 Mbps to support three users simultaneously watching HD video, playing Fortnite, and surfing the web. Two heavy users and up to four light users can share a medium service with speeds between 12Mbps and 25Mbps, as recommended by the FCC’s Household Broadband Guide.

Most homes don’t need the top-tier 200Mbps or 1Gbps connections that several service providers now provide. However, it’s better to have too much speed than too little, so don’t just go with the cheapest option. 

Find out how much bandwidth you’ll actually use by analyzing your online habits, and then go with the most cost-effective plan that can handle your online activities.

Take Into Account Packaged And Unbundled Services

Internet service providers (ISPs) will always try to upsell customers to more expensive plans if they can. Double plays combine TV and internet into a single bill, whereas triple plays combine TV, internet, and phone into a single bill. 

It’s more profitable for ISPs to sell you two or more services than it is to sell you just one, therefore they’ll offer you a discount if you purchase all of their offerings at once rather than individually.

Triple-play packages from Xfinity, which include television, telephone, and Internet service at 200 Mbps, may be found for as little as $90 per month for the first two years in central New Jersey. For the first 12 months, we’ll also throw in a free upgrade to our fastest plan of 1Gbps. If you want to add TV and phone to your gigabit Internet connection, you’ll just pay $10 more per month with this bundle.

But if you end up paying more for bundled services you’ll never use, it’s not a good deal. Xfinity, for instance, provides a stand-alone Internet service with speeds of up to 200 Mbps for $35 per month. Therefore, if you only require Internet and find that 200 Mbps is adequate, you will not save money by purchasing the bundle. The extra $55 per month is unnecessary.

There’s a chance you don’t require all three services even though you’re already paying for them. Hulu, Disney+, and Netflix are just a few of the streaming media providers that make watching TV without cable easier than ever. Similarly, if you only use your cell phone, you can avoid paying for a landline. Therefore, think about the services you employ.

However, there are times when it makes financial sense to shell out for a service you won’t actually use. In our case, when my husband and I originally signed up for home phone and internet service, We were quoted $85 for a bundle that included our home phone service, internet service, and television service. When we bundled our phone and Internet services, we saved $5 compared to if we had purchased them separately.

The bundle was the best option for us, despite the fact that we had no use for cable TV. After the introductory time finished, however, the total cost of the three services increased to $130. As a result, we decided to cancel our TV service while keeping our other two services (phone and Internet) due to the cost savings.

Read or insist on being read the complete agreement before committing to a package. Determine how long the discounted package rate will be available, and what the regular fee will be once the discount period finishes. If you want to cancel or stop using a service during the lock-in period, make sure you know the associated costs.

Using Your Own Router And Modem

If you check closely at your monthly Internet statement, you will likely notice a charge of roughly $10 for the rental of your modem, router, or both. 

That may not seem like much, but consider that you can get a modem/router combo for under $100 on Amazon. Buying your own equipment instead of renting from your ISP may result in a net save of money in less than a year.

Unfortunately, not everyone can benefit from this frugal hack. There are certain drawbacks to buying your own modem and router that may make the investment less worthwhile.

You Can’t Always Do That

It is not possible to use a cable modem with a DSL or fiber Internet connection. Only your Internet service provider can provide the specialized hardware needed for such a connection.

Further, PCMag states that a unique modem equipped with a phone port is required for users who bundle their home phone and Internet service. You’re better off renting that from your Internet service provider because they’re more difficult to locate and cost more than models without one.

Not Always Less Expensive

DIY equipment installation isn’t always a cost-saver. A customer’s monthly price might not go down any if they use their own modem because some ISPs provide one for free with service bundles.

Some cable companies won’t let you cancel it, even though it’s a separate fee. I asked our provider over the phone if we could avoid paying for a modem if we provided our own, but they declined.

A Compatible Model is Required

When it comes to your Internet provider, you can’t just pick up any old modem/router combo. Any model you select must be compatible with the service in question. There is usually a list of modems and routers that work with a given ISP online. If you’re unsure whether or not yours does, give them a call.

You Must Go at the Correct Speed

The speed of your Internet connection must be compatible with your modem. According to PCMag, DOCSIS 3.0 (which stands for “Data-Over-Cable Service Interface Specification”) is the current standard since it can support speeds of up to a gigabit.

Unfortunately, not all service providers provide DOCSIS 3.0 gigabit options. Others call for a more recent modem with DOCSIS 3.1 capabilities. For data transfer rates up to 10Gbps, this modern protocol is ready. A DOCSIS 3.1 modem can still be used with an ISP that does not support the new standard because it is backward compatible with DOCSIS 3.0.

It Must Be Installed by You

If you are providing your own modem and router, installation is your responsibility. Thankfully, that’s typically not too difficult to figure out. You may find general instructions for configuring a wireless router on PCMag’s website, and you can get guides for configuring specific models on YouTube.

It Might Need to Be Replaced

Whenever you have a rented modem and router, your ISP will replace them if they break or become obsolete. The onus of regular equipment replacement falls on the equipment owner.

That may be desirable with certain Internet service providers. If your ISP is slow to schedule service appointments, you may find that purchasing a new router and installing it yourself is a more expedient option.

The Rental Must Be Cancelled by You

The rental fee is not removed from your bill by your Internet service provider (ISP) if you purchase and install your own modem and router. Once you’ve replaced the leased equipment, you’ll need to call the firm to let them know and then drive to the nearest facility to return the item. Make that the rental charge has been removed from your bill after that.

4. Be Ready to Change

When it comes to speeds below 25 Mbps, most areas have a choice between two or more service providers. So if you’ve exhausted all other options and your ISP still won’t budge on your price, shopping around for a better offer elsewhere is your best bet.

You can begin your search for a provider that serves your area by visiting BroadbandNow. Every service on the list deserves your attention, not just the household names like Comcast and Spectrum. BroadbandNow claims that smaller providers like Ting and Starry can often undercut the big ISPs when it comes to the price of high-speed connections.

A smaller ISP may not always be the most cost-effective choice, but it may provide the most bang for your buck. Sometimes these little businesses might outperform their larger rivals in terms of speed and customer service.

How to Avoid Issues When Switching

Moving your Internet service might be a major problem. Many of the difficulties you’ll face are inescapable, but they can be avoided.

Fees for Termination

It may cost you a lot of money to break your contract with your current ISP if you want to leave before the term is up. Depending on the length of your contract, this cost can range from $10 to $20 every month. As a result, you may have to pay up to $240 if you want to get out of your contract early by a year.

You’ll be glad to know that when you switch to certain providers, like Spectrum, they’ll cover these costs on your behalf. If the new service provider doesn’t honor your current contract, you should hold out until it ends.

A Gap in the Service

The time it takes to get your Internet back online after canceling before setting up a new service can vary from a few days to six weeks. You should plan to have the new service installed on the same day or within a few days of when the old service is terminated.

This is simplified when making the transition from, say, DSL to cable, as the two services do not share the same lines. If you can’t afford to go without Internet for more than a few days, splitting your payment between two service providers is a good alternative.

Changing Email Addresses

An email address like “[email protected]” is associated with a specific Internet service provider and will be deleted if you move providers. Create a brand-new account with a free provider, such as Gmail or Yahoo. See what features other free email providers offer by reading Top Ten Reviews.

Please inform all of your contacts of the move and have any urgent mail forwarded to your new address. You can take your new email address with you if you ever decide to switch providers again.

Changing the Equipment

If you are renting your Internet service provider’s modem and router, you should return them as soon as possible to prevent being charged. Find out when, where, and how you can cancel before making a decision.

If you want to utilize your own modem and router with the new service, you need to have devices that work with all the ISPs in your area. Next time, it will be much less complicated thanks to that.

5. Only Use Mobile Devices

Eliminating your need for a fixed-line internet connection is another option. You might not need a physical line to bring Internet service into your house if you access the Internet mostly through a smartphone or tablet. 

If that’s the case, it can make sense to shop around for a more affordable mobile data package that still meets your requirements. Wireless service from providers like Mint Mobile costs as little as $15 per month.

Just because you have a mobile data plan doesn’t mean you have to use it only on your phone. Create a Wi-Fi hotspot on your phone and use it to share your phone’s Internet connection with other devices, such as a laptop or tablet.

PCMag explains how to do this tethering for both iOS and Android devices. Please be aware that not all mobile service plans support tethering. In addition, it drains your phone’s power supply. There may be a need to always have a portable charger on hand if this is a common occurrence.

Separate mobile hotspots can be costly but may be worthwhile if you need to connect multiple devices at once. The data on your phone is safe, as these gadgets have their own data subscriptions. They have superior antennas to phones and can connect more devices to the Internet at once.

It’s important to remember that mobile hotspots aren’t without their downsides. The high cost of data is in addition to the pricey equipment itself (which can range from $40 to $400).

As reported by PCMag, the cost per megabyte of 4G plans for most mobile hotspots is significantly higher than the cost of fixed-line broadband connections. If you need 100 GB of data each month, you should budget at least $50.

When your home Internet connection is your sole option, that amount of data won’t go very far. Xfinity reports that monthly residential use is 346GB. The most significant data consumers are videoconferencing and online video streaming.

You may expect to pay more each month if you rely on a mobile hotspot for all of your Internet needs, including streaming. However, a mobile hotspot may be less expensive than a fixed Internet connection if you require it for a private office or shared workspace.

Bottom Line

One more thing to keep in mind if you want to save money on your Internet plan: be a reliable customer. If there’s an issue, don’t be afraid to voice your displeasure, but remember to be courteous when communicating with customer service representatives and to pay your account on time.

Internet service providers are more likely to keep a customer who has been with them for a long time and has a solid payment history than a new customer with unknown payment history. If your Internet service provider (ISP) loves you, it will be more ready to work with you to keep your business.

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