There are many myths and misconceptions that people have about broadband Internet. Most of these are due to the common falsities in the advertising of broadband packages. Here are eight of the most common misconceptions.
1 – Your Connection Will Always Work at Maximum Speed
If a service provider advertises a broadband package with a maximum speed of 8Mbps, this does not mean that your connection will always be working at this speed. This only means is that this will be the fastest possible speed that the connection can reach. The actual speed depends on the time of day, amount of traffic, distance from the exchange and various other factors.
2 – You Need to Use the Software that Your ISP Provides
Most service providers supply software which is supposed to enhance the quality of the service that you receive. Such software includes things like their own web browser, email client, antivirus software or connection manager. In reality, however, most of this type of software offers little or no benefit to the end user.
3 – Certain Programs Can Improve Broadband Speed
Software which claims to be able to increase the speed of a broadband Internet connection can be found all over the web. What such software does, however, is compress images and other data before you receive it. While this can be useful for very slow connections, it will make for a lower quality browsing experience.
4 – The More Expensive the Service, the Better It Is
While this might seem like a realistic assumption, it is not always the case. Many of the cheaper services are offered by newer companies with newer hardware. It may also be that the cheaper service is often the result of it having more customers.
5 – An “Unlimited” Broadband Package Means I Can Download as Much as I Want
In the US, as well as in some other countries, “Unlimited” broadband packages often come at an enormous premium. In theory, you should be able to download as much as you want with such a privilege, but there is usually a fair use policy which disallows you from completely indiscriminate use.
6 – US Broadband Speeds Are Extremely High
Many people assume that the US has the world’s highest broadband speeds, but the reality is very different. In fact, broadband speeds in the US are far from the world’s highest. Most European countries, Japan and Korea have much faster broadband connections.
7 – The Service Provider Can Make the Internet Safe for Children
Internet service providers have started to make an effort to block inappropriate content on the web, but usually you have to pay a premium for this extra service. Unfortunately, however, most of these controls are easy to circumvent and they do not guard against everything anyway.
8 – The Service Provider Knows What You Are Downloading
While it is true that an Internet service provider will gather various statistics about your Internet usage, it is extremely unlikely that they will know exactly what you are downloading and which sites you are visiting. ISPs simply do not have the time or resources to investigate their users in such a way, although such investigations can be carried out on behalf of the authorities in exceptional circumstances.