What are the Different Types of ISPs?

Description: Want to get online for the first time? Then you will need to find out all you can about ISPs - so read on to get the lowdown on what it stands for and what it means for you.

An ISP is basically an internet service provider - someone who provides an internet connection for you in exchange for a monthly fee. There are plenty of internet service providers around; some are telephone companies, some are cable companies, some are satellite companies and others offer dedicated services designed to appeal to certain sections of the marketplace such as businesses.

But under that broad umbrella term there are plenty of variations, and this is where things can start to get complicated.

To begin with, there are two main types of internet service provider - those that supply dial up connections via an existing telephone line, and those that provide faster, broadband based connections which can be via another means altogether, such as a cable or satellite dish.

While some ISPs still provide dial up services, these are far slower than broadband ISP connections, which are certainly becoming more and more widespread as time goes on.

Broadband internet service providers come in several forms. Cable connections are extremely popular as they are relatively cheap and provide a good signal consistently. Satellite ISPs do exist also but they are generally more popular in more remote areas which other broadband providers may not yet have reached with cabling.

Another form of ISP is your phone company, which can often provide you with a DSL (digital subscriber line) connection which makes the most of the phone line you already have. This is a good option if you don't want extra cabling running into your home, or a satellite dish stuck on your roof.

Finally there are wireless internet service providers, which may well be the way of the future, as they provide you with more versatility and a greater range in which to use your laptop to connect to the internet.

As you can see, choosing the right ISP depends on a lot of factors, and not all of those relate to your own needs.

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