Find the right internet connection

People who have had an Internet service provider for a long time can usually save money by switching providers. But which technologies and prices are right, and how fast should broadband be?

Berlin/Hanover – The long-term customer is rewarded for his loyalty. Those who believe in it will also be disappointed when it comes to the internet contract. Indeed, conditions for new customers are generally simply better. The only solution is to change supplier.

But what is important about home broadband? If you’re looking for a new Internet service provider for your home, you should check availability first. Consumers can do this on the websites of various providers.

Urs Mansmann of trade magazine “c’t” recommends checking availability with providers with the largest networks, namely Telekom and Vodafone, to get a first idea.

But what internet technologies are available? In Germany, DSL, which uses the copper cables of the old telephone networks, is more widespread.

DSL can reach up to 250 Mbit/s

The bandwidth depends among other things on the DSL standard: in ADSL2+, it is 16 megabits per second (Mbps) and can reach 250 Mbps in VDSL with Super Vectoring technology, explains Mansmann. A Telecom map shows the extent of the DSL network.

Wired Internet is also widespread. Depending on the tariff, it is possible to reach speeds of 1000 Mbit/s (1 gigabit). Fiber optic connections are also often an option: “25% of households are now connected to the fiber optic network and this figure is expected to increase rapidly in the coming years,” says Mansmann.

People who live in cities almost always have at least one of the following four options: DSL, cable, fiber optic, or mobile Internet at home. This does not always happen in the countryside.

In such cases, it is possible to claim your right to fast Internet access with the Federal Network Agency. In case of doubt, the authority then forces a supplier to make a connection of at least 10 Mbit/s in download in the country in question. The upload must be at least 1.7 Mbit/s and the response time (latency) must not exceed 150 milliseconds. There is no right to a particular technique. And it can take more than a year.

For those who don’t want to wait, there’s always satellite internet as an option. For this, it is best to choose a provider with low earth orbit (LEO) satellites, advises Mansmann. Because geostationary satellites, which fly much higher, only provide relatively slow Internet connections.

For two, 50 Mbit/s is enough

And how fast should the internet be at home? It depends. “For a single person, a connection of 50 Mbit/s is sufficient, a family of four is satisfied with 100 Mbit/s,” explains Mansmann. However, a wider bandwidth means more comfort.

It is important to carefully compare the different prices. Indeed, toll costs can be murky at first glance. For example, when suppliers advertise a reduced price, but this is only valid for the first few months.

As a general rule, the price of a DSL, cable or fiber optic connection at 100 Mbit/s is around 40 euros per month. If you want a meaningful comparison, you need to add up the monthly costs and any trade-in or even equipment payments and subtract any deductibles.

Cancel early

The Consumer Center in Bremen recommends concluding the new contract a few weeks before the end of the notice period for the old contract. In doing so, the new supplier must be responsible for terminating the old contract. Thus, the old and the new provider can take care of a smooth transition of the line, including the transfer of call numbers.

DSL router

The new telecommunications law, in force from December 2021, makes switching providers easier and safer for consumers. If problems arise during the switch or afterwards, for example if the Internet does not work or is slower than agreed, customers can ask for a price reduction or submit a special termination request.

Fiber optic connection

Furthermore, the consequences of a contract end date are no longer so dramatic: consumers can terminate at any time, with one month’s notice, a contract that has been silently renewed after the minimum duration has expired. dpa

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