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From choosing the best internet speed for your lifestyle to understanding how different technologies work, we compiled all the info you’ll need to make an informed purchase. Our localized search tool will show you available internet service providers near you. Entering your zip code will help us filter your results since providers can vary by location. To start, check out some of the best internet service providers available.
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Internet Type: Pros & Cons
Short for Digital Subscriber Line, this type of internet uses the copper phone lines that typically already run through most homes to transmit digital data.
Cable internet uses copper coaxial cables, the same way you get cable TV, to deliver electrical signals to a modem.
Fiber internet transfers data as light signals through the use of fiber-optic cables made from thin glass or plastic wires.
Uses three satellite dishes to transmit signals: one dish connected to your modem, one in space, and one at an internet service provider’s hub.
What Internet Speed Do You Need?
Understanding internet speed and connection type can be complicated. Most providers offer high-speed plans ranging from 100-1000 Mbps depending on your location. Are you a gamer? Do you stream content in several different rooms? Work from home? Read more about how to choose the best internet speed for your lifestyle.
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Data sourced 7/2/2020. Offers and availability vary by location. Prices are subject to change and may require a contract.
Computer scientists Vinton Cerf and Bob Kahn are credited with inventing the Internet communication protocols we use today and the system referred to as the Internet. Cerf and Kahn developed a set of guidelines for data transfer using packet switching in 1980, calling those guidelines TCP/IP, or Transmission Control Protocol and Internet Protocol. The TCP part of the protocol is in charge of packing the data before it moves across the network and unpacking it once it has arrived. The IP component acts as the trip coordinator and maps the movement of information from its start point to its end point.
Though other protocols were developed and used before TCP/IP, such as the file transfer protocol (FTP) and network control protocol (NCP), the Internet as we know it today is built on the basis of Cerf and Kahn’s "network of networks."