Switching Internet Providers

What you need to know to make an informed choice.

Find the providers that service your area.

Switching Internet providers?

Know what type of network you’re looking for.


DSL stands for Digital Subscriber Line. Data on a DSL network is transmitted via existing telephone lines, so DSL internet service is often available for homes that are eligible for landline phone service. If changing internet providers is on your agenda, DSL is an option to consider.


Cable internet is transmitted via existing cable lines. Cable offers decent speeds, usually fast enough for streaming and downloading. Some cable plans offer more speed than DSL, but if you decide to switch over to a cable company, it means you’ll share your connection with your neighbors. When more people are online, there’s less bandwidth available and your connection becomes slower.


Satellite internet is beamed down from a satellite to a dish connected to your home. It’s available almost anywhere and is a great option if you live in a rural or remote area that has no phone or cable line infrastructure. Speeds are usually slower than DSL or cable – but still fast enough for basic uses like emailing and social networking.


Fiber-optic internet is the latest internet technology. It transmits data in the form of pulses of light along thin fiberglass fibers. Fiber optic providers boast higher speeds and greater reliability than cable, DSL, or satellite providers can match – plus, fiber networks are less susceptible to corrosion and weather interference. Swapping to a fiber provider will give your network a performance boost, but availability is often limited to major cities.

The rules of switching internet providers