The binding long-term contract once automatic for Internet service has gone by the wayside. As competition increases for no-contract wireless Internet, requirements change, too.
Some carriers have eliminated contracts altogether. Others offer a short term, or offer service without a credit check.
It’s one of many incentives offered. They’re to encourage new customers or people to switch carriers for high-speed Internet. No-contract Internet providers might also offer gift cards, and sign customers up for auto-pay service.
Other considerations include:
Providers often offer similar speed options. Service terms and bonuses can make the difference in a choice for wireless Internet.
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With competition on the rise, Internet providers often sweeten the deal for high-speed Internet.
To get service, customers sometimes have to sign a contract for one or two years. Many contracts included fees for early termination. Providers often don’t include contracts for wireless Internet. No-contract Internet allows customers to change carriers with less hassle.
Some carriers offer a low introductory price. Then, they raise the monthly rate when it expires. With a price guarantee, monthly cost doesn’t rise for the life of the agreement. This feature might come with an early cancellation fee.
Installation can become expensive. Many carriers will waive installation costs, sometimes for a limited time. The deal often doesn’t include hardware. It might apply only to basic installation for no-contract wireless Internet.
Carriers might charge extra for special circumstances in installation.
Some Internet providers also offer TV. They might provide access to premium channels if customers bundle TV and Internet. Other might offer prepaid debit cards upon activation. Also, look for free routers and other hardware for your Internet service.
Prepaid Internet gives customers the option to pay a month or more ahead for Internet service. Prepaid Internet carriers usually don’t check a customer’s credit. No long-term agreement is usually required. Data purchased ahead of time can often cost more than the same carrier’s regular plans.
Benefits of prepaid Internet:
NO TERMINATION FEES | Month-to-month or prepaid Internet plans aren’t under contract. A customer won’t be subject to termination fees should they decide to change carriers.
NO SURPRISES | Prepaid Internet means no overage charges or hidden fees. A customer pays for a certain amount of data, and must buy more when that’s exhausted.
Disadvantages of prepaid Internet:
MISCALULATIONS | Data amounts aren’t easy to track. Not all carriers allow customers to roll unused data over, so you might lose it. Also, running out at an inopportune time could be inconvenient.
NOT IDEAL FOR GAMING | Tracking data can become difficult with consumption rates associated with online games. Finite data is hard to track with other media-rich activity, too.
Most carriers offer home phone services, too. These include cable, DSL, fiber and satellite Internet providers. Phone service comes on the same network. Plans include both standard and advanced calling features. Carriers often offer nationwide long distance or International plans. Bundle a landline phone with Internet and TV for a Triple Play bundle. This could include call waiting notifications that appear on the TV screen.
It’s often offered with Internet as a Double Play bundle, or with Internet and phone for a Triple Play. TV service often includes on-the-go viewing through mobile apps. Most come with a DVR, which can include features such as any-room viewing and mobile scheduling to record programs. Offerings can include premium networks. Some providers offer channel packs for family programming, sports and more.
No-contract service, price guarantees and free routers are great. What else is?
Today’s homes have varying online needs. Gaming, streaming and other media-rich activity will require more speed, especially with multiple users.
What’s the reputation of a carrier’s network where you live? Cable and DSL carriers cover metro areas. Fiber Internet tends to serve specific markets, and is growing. Satellite providers connect people in rural areas where other methods aren’t an option.
For some carriers, premium customer care comes at an additional cost. Most provide technical support 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The extent to which a customer care team can help is also a consideration when you choose a provider.
No-contract Internet is a draw for some customers. For others, that’s not as important, but consistent speed is. Households who want TV and phone could consider bundling with a single provider. Assess the speed, time, and resource considerations to determine the best fit.