Own Or Lease The Right Modem For Optimizing Broadband Speeds

Posted by Bhavesh Joshi On Monday, February 18, 2013 0 comments

Own Or Lease The Right Modem For Optimizing Broadband Speeds
At whatever level the broadband bandwidth you use, it certainly makes sense to optimize the amount you’re paying for. While there are many reasons that the full potential of available broadband is not being achieved, one of the most obvious potential choke-points is the modem. As the interface between your system and the great, big outside world, it’s the key to efficient data transfer. So, constantly having broadband speed issues? In this article we take a look at ways of optimizing your broadband with a modem, whether by leasing or owning one.

The majority of family and small business subscribers lease a modem from their Internet Service Provider (ISP). Moreover, once the modem they receive from their ISP is hooked up and working, it tends to be forgotten: Just a small box with blinking lights tucked away in a corner of the home or office. As the number of devices and applications used over that modem increases, however, the amount of available bandwidth begins to appear to become inadequate. One of the first impulses (aside from bad language) is to contract with the ISP for more. And, why not? More is always better. (This explains why people own 40hp riding mowing tractors, even if their lawn is the size of a parking space.)

If you are at the point where you feel the need for more speed, before – or as – you contract with your ISP for greater broadband speed, it’s a good time to consider your modem. Having a modem that is sufficient to your needs is just as, if not more, important as having the devices and software.

The first thing to determine is if you are leasing the modem, or if your actually purchased it as part of the original contract with your ISP. It’s easy to forget, but just as easy to find out: Contact your ISP. While you’re at it, find out if the model you are currently using is the newest they have in their inventory. If not, they’ll almost certainly be willing to sell or lease their most up-to-date model; it’s in their interest both to keep you satisfied and to provide additional revenue for their company. Before you commit, get the model of the modem they may be suggesting for trade-in. If you already have the best they have, confirm the model of that.

At this point, consider the pros and cons of leasing from the ISP or purchasing one on your own. A leasing contract usually requires that the ISP support the modem, including maintenance, repair and upgrade. Even if your purchased from them, they will almost certainly support the modem, although whether a fee is attached is something you’ll have to find out. On the other hand, ISPs are less likely to provide top-of-the-line modems for their subscribers. They do want to provide modems that are sufficient to the task – to do otherwise would make subscribers very sad – but price (their price) is also a major factor in their decision of which model to adopt.

Internet Broadband
Once you know your options with your ISP, it’s time to go window shopping (or whatever OS you use). There are lots of models available, but you’ll quickly focus on the ones that both fit your needs and are within your price range. Consider speed, capacity, configuration, software (particularly the QOS Packet Scheduler), compatibility with your particular set-up, compatibility with your ISP’s system and the manufacturer’s reputation for making a good, robust product. You will not be shocked to find out that there will be lots of opinions for each model you’re considering posted on the internet. Treat these opinions as you would normally when making any other decision. Whatever you decide, you will certainly have a much wider range of options open to you than are available from your ISP.

The cons of owning a modem purchased outside the ISP’s supply chain are that you will be solely responsible for its installation, upkeep and, if necessary, replacement. In the end, only you can decide if that is an acceptable trade-off for the independent choice and control you gain from buying your own model.

In the end, the decision to continue to lease or to buy your own modem is not the most earth-shattering decision you’ll ever make. Depending upon how much you depend upon fast, dependable broadband access for work and play, it will have some effect on you. At least considering the option of lease or buy will place you in a smaller group of broadband users who have taken the step to take more personal control over their broadband environment.

The author of this article Jane Fletcher often does a broadband speed test for peace of mind.

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