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How many ISPs can you choose from for your home network?

Displaying poll results.
none (library, coffee shop, etc.)
  1% 3 votes
one
  22% 50 votes
two
  30% 69 votes
three
  11% 25 votes
four
  5% 13 votes
five or more
  26% 60 votes
other (specify)
  2% 6 votes
226 total votes.
[ Voting Booth | Other Polls | Back Home ]
  • Don't complain about lack of options. You've got to pick a few when you do multiple choice. Those are the breaks.
  • Feel free to suggest poll ideas if you're feeling creative. I'd strongly suggest reading the past polls first.
  • This whole thing is wildly inaccurate. Rounding errors, ballot stuffers, dynamic IPs, firewalls. If you're using these numbers to do anything important, you're insane.
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  • (Score: 2, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 03 2017, @12:56AM (4 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 03 2017, @12:56AM (#591448)

    We have two options at our house. Comcast and CenturyLink. It's not really an option though. Comcast provides a least 40Gb download speeds, while CenturyLink provides an *advertised* 10Gb download speed. Given how far from the CenturyLink switch we are, our neighborhood get's no where near the advertised 10Gb download speeds from CenturyLink. Comcast is regularly at or above 40Gb.

    The phone companies could have dominated broadband, but they completely *failed* in the 90's. PacificBell was rolling out fiber to the house in California in the mid-90's and then abandoned the entire infrastructure when they were purchased by SWB (who were then purchased by someone else, etc.). There would have been real competition if they had been allowed to complete the rollout.

    • (Score: 2) by Kymation on Wednesday November 08 2017, @01:53AM

      by Kymation (1047) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday November 08 2017, @01:53AM (#593913)

      Same here, except CenturyLink is currently running fiber all over town. They claim they will be offering gigabit internet for less than Comcast is currently charging for 40Mb. I can't wait.

      Oh, and I think you meant 40 Mb. I'd be extremely happy to see 40Gb from my Comcast hookup. Best I've seen is a little over 60 Mb.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 14 2017, @09:59PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 14 2017, @09:59PM (#597009)

      Same choices here, Comcast offers 120 mb/s, Centurylink 80 mb/s. Comcast continually had issues in my Apt building, everyone in the building complained, and they refused to send anyone out to look unless someone was going to pay for the service call and then it would take them about a week. Most likely the issue was a loose or corroded connection going to the building. Switched to Century link. Modem they sent me was a dud, but when I called to complain they had a tech at my door 8 am the next morning. He tested all the wiring, tested the outlets, replaced an outlet, and then eventually replaced the modem. Was there for about an hour. Didn't try to charge me a cent.

    • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday November 15 2017, @04:09AM

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday November 15 2017, @04:09AM (#597139)

      Similar here - we have Comcast and AT&T, but AT&T delivers via DSL which is laughably slow and getting less reliable as their copper ages. Plus, it's AT&T, so, even though they send a pair of sales people to our door every 6 months or so, due to past experiences I will NEVER purchase an optional service from AT&T again. I tell the sales people as much and they leave quickly, but that doesn't seem to discourage the next set from coming.

    • (Score: 2) by TheRaven on Tuesday November 21 2017, @01:46PM

      by TheRaven (270) on Tuesday November 21 2017, @01:46PM (#599636) Journal
      I really hope that's a typo, because if you're actually complaining about getting only 10Gb/s speeds then you're going to make a lot of people very jealous.
      --
      sudo mod me up
  • (Score: 4, Informative) by PartTimeZombie on Friday November 03 2017, @01:49AM (6 children)

    by PartTimeZombie (4827) on Friday November 03 2017, @01:49AM (#591476)

    I can choose from 5 or more, but I don't live in the US.

    • (Score: 2) by Nerdfest on Sunday November 05 2017, @04:23PM (4 children)

      by Nerdfest (80) Subscriber Badge on Sunday November 05 2017, @04:23PM (#592554)

      Likewise, although some are resellers of the big ISPs.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 07 2017, @06:46AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 07 2017, @06:46AM (#593529)

        I just counted cables coming into my apartment. In a blind spot for wireless internet (ignoring expensive cellular offerings).

      • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday November 15 2017, @04:13AM (2 children)

        by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday November 15 2017, @04:13AM (#597142)

        I was going to ask: is this just 5 different customer service faces on the same infrastructure?

        We had about 8 choices of electric service providers in Houston - supposedly they sourced their power from different generation options, but they all delivered through the same transmission lines.

        • (Score: 2) by Mykl on Wednesday November 29 2017, @01:24AM (1 child)

          by Mykl (1112) on Wednesday November 29 2017, @01:24AM (#602764)

          Non-US here. I have a stack of options in terms of resellers, but in terms of infrastructure usage, it would be 2 fixed and 3 wireless options.

          • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday November 29 2017, @01:32AM

            by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday November 29 2017, @01:32AM (#602765)

            Technically, that sort of describes the US, too, except the options stack up like this:

            Coaxial high-speed delivery by the cable TV company - customer service from the 8th level of hell, but usable when its working. Epileptic pricing structure, always settling on the high side of unreasonable.

            Twisted copper DSL delivery (too slow by half) by AT&T, slow and the predatory monopoly from a century ago (these are the people who charge late fees to hurricane victims who can't receive mail...)

            Various satellite and occasional ground based wireless service providers, all on par with cable pricing, but much slower and even less reliable.

    • (Score: 1) by idetuxs on Wednesday November 08 2017, @01:33AM

      by idetuxs (2990) on Wednesday November 08 2017, @01:33AM (#593907)

      Same here

  • (Score: 2) by shortscreen on Friday November 03 2017, @05:32AM (6 children)

    by shortscreen (2252) on Friday November 03 2017, @05:32AM (#591549) Journal

    Cable co
    3G
    maybe satellite?

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 03 2017, @02:19PM (3 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 03 2017, @02:19PM (#591674)

      I don't think 3G counts, with their data caps and bandwidth problems.

      • (Score: 2) by dry on Saturday November 04 2017, @03:18AM

        by dry (223) on Saturday November 04 2017, @03:18AM (#592050) Journal

        I don't think 3G counts, with their data caps and bandwidth problems.

        I guess I should have voted zero then. My ISP announced last November that they were cancelling my dial-up as they couldn't get equipment anymore though it is still working and my bill says $0.00 (used to be $39.95) and the other week they finally got a cell tower operating. I'm hoping to get the $85 for 10 GB deal (only 20 cents a MB if you go over) that my neighbour got. This is about 40 miles east of Vancouver BC.

      • (Score: 1) by Ethanol-fueled on Sunday November 05 2017, @03:41PM

        by Ethanol-fueled (2792) Subscriber Badge on Sunday November 05 2017, @03:41PM (#592539) Homepage

        Satellite shouldn't count either -- data transfer rates are pathetic. It's for cruise ships, aircraft, and when you absolutely must be connected from the remote jungles of Jiggaboonia.

      • (Score: 4, Informative) by requerdanos on Monday November 06 2017, @06:40PM

        by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Monday November 06 2017, @06:40PM (#593231) Journal

        Cable co
        3G
        maybe satellite?

        I don't think 3G counts, with their data caps and bandwidth problems.

        Satellite doesn't count either; similar reasons, that effectively boil down to much (much, much) higher costs for the same use.

        We stream video and I download Linux ISOs. For example, I downloaded the complete Debian 9 "Stretch" Amd-64 blu-ray set to have something with which to test my shiny new blu-ray burner. That alone was a 60 gigabyte download, torrent-sharing all the way. Even given unlimited time and money, I doubt that could be accomplished on 3g. With satellite, it could, of course, given the unlimited money to pay per (giga-|mega-|tera-) byte. Might as well just make a bonfire with the money and ask me to mail you the blu-ray set.

        In the abstract, it might be possible to make a case for satellite or 3g internet, but I don't live in the abstract: I live in a location where a "rural membership cooperative" has a monopoly, and they are the only provider available. Sure, I get 200Gbit cable internet from them for less than $100 a month, and I like it, but I'd still like to have choices, and 3g and satellite providers just don't offer anything close to what cable Internet does, for anywhere near the price. They'd be fine for "email and web browsing" assuming you don't email big documents, and don't browse sites with big files, but the survey isn't about "email and web browsing," but about ISPs, and those by definition should give you meaningful Internet connectivity.

        As an aside: I hereby condemn all ISPs -- mine included -- that give out fake private IP addresses to their cable modem customers instead of real IP addresses. That makes any kind of direct connection (IRC-DCC, jabber, inbound VNC, etc.) not just difficult, but actually physically impossible. My ISP (atmc.net) charges an extra $10 a month for a static IP, which they offer as the only solution--otherwise you're in a DHCP pool with useless 10.* addresses (pretty much only good for, again, "email and web browsing"). I told them I didn't need a static address--they could change it ten times a day if they want--it just needs to be an Internet address and not a "private" address. Pay the $10 or get lost, they said (paraphrasing). Did I mention that I selected "one" in this survey because they are the only ISP serving my area?

    • (Score: 2) by richtopia on Thursday November 09 2017, @04:32PM

      by richtopia (3160) Subscriber Badge on Thursday November 09 2017, @04:32PM (#594686) Homepage Journal

      When WiMAX was still around, my friend was able to play Left 4 Dead over his tethered mobile phone. That I would consider broadband, as you have both the low latency and reasonable bandwidth demonstrated.

      I've used my LTE device tethered to my laptop for general internet needs, but typically you can tell you are on a mobile connection. So I wouldn't qualify it as a broadband replacement, even with an unlimited plan. Perhaps someone who actually uses it for their primary internet needs has a different opinion.

    • (Score: 2) by julian on Wednesday November 29 2017, @07:32AM

      by julian (6003) on Wednesday November 29 2017, @07:32AM (#602863)

      So that's one option. Wireless, satellite (still wireless, I guess?) and even DSL don't count as broadband. Pretty much everyone has 1 option for broadband, the cable company. If you're very lucky, there's some sort of fiber option in your city. Everything else is not fast enough, too high latency, or low data cap, to count as broadband. No competition, no market--free or otherwise.

  • (Score: 1) by pTamok on Friday November 03 2017, @11:49AM

    by pTamok (3042) on Friday November 03 2017, @11:49AM (#591632)

    I can choose from many ISPs, but only have two possibilities (at semi-reasonable prices) for the physical infrastructure:

    1) DSL over copper to local telephone exchange (Am: switch) where the pair can be connected to one of several different ISPs' DSLAMs - probably offering around 20-30 Mbit/s downstream.
    2) Optical fibre provided by Cable TV Operator. For around USD 125 per month, I can have 500/500 Mbit/s, or 30/30 for about USD 55 per month. That includes IPv6.

    If I had enough money, I could probably buy a fibre connection from one of several telecommunications providers, some national, some purely local. This isn't an option unless I'm unreasonably rich, or run a company from my home which makes enough money to allow financing a business fibre connection.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 03 2017, @02:10PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 03 2017, @02:10PM (#591672)

    I have lived in a lot of different cities in Minnesota with only the typical duopoly of evil companies (usually Comcast and Centurylink). However, in southeast MN, there is now fiberoptic Internet access. I get 100Mbps/100Mbps for $60/month. The company providing it is HBC, who is surprisingly non-evil. I think they used to be owned by a nonprofit org.

    My neighbors have Comcast, and they are still as abusive as ever, even now that they have competition. They charge undisclosed "regulatory recovery" fees, increase prices without warning, mail indecipherable bills, and have 45 minute waits on hold to dispute a bill.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Geotti on Friday November 03 2017, @04:45PM

    by Geotti (1146) on Friday November 03 2017, @04:45PM (#591729) Journal

    Hereabouts one can choose from a lot of ISPs, but there are really only a few companies, where all those "ISPs" rent the last mile from. The mediums are: Phone Line (xDSL), Cable, and 4 mobile phone networks (three of which support LTE). It's also possible to get a satellite uplink and maybe directional radio, but compared to the previous options that is not very practical.

  • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Friday November 03 2017, @08:42PM

    by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Friday November 03 2017, @08:42PM (#591868)

    Local cable co that has been bought by bigger (and/or stupider?) companies 3 times in less than a decade.

    . . . or . . .

    AT&T

    --
    ALL LIABILITY IS EXPRESSLY DISCLAIMED FOR PERSONAL INJURY OR DEATH THAT RESULTS FROM READING THE SOURCE CODE.
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 04 2017, @03:38PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 04 2017, @03:38PM (#592197)

    Comcast vs AT&T. I've also heard that boost is doing some 30/mo home internet thing, never looked into it though, because I have only one practical choice: AT&T, because my dad works for them so I get a ridiculously low price for a good enough connection. I also don't have to deal with customer service.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 06 2017, @06:36PM (5 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 06 2017, @06:36PM (#593229)

    Wireless: AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon

    Wired: AT&T, Comcast, Sprint

    Looks like there is competition in the US after all, liars.

    • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 09 2017, @09:05AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 09 2017, @09:05AM (#594541)

      Fresh, hot loaf.

    • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Thursday November 09 2017, @09:24PM (2 children)

      by tangomargarine (667) on Thursday November 09 2017, @09:24PM (#594846)

      Well a single AC posted a dissenting opinion. Guess we can all go home now because everybody else is wrong.

      Not to mention, your set has duplicates. Properly reduced, it would be 5: {AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon, Comcast}

      --
      "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
      • (Score: 2) by Spamalope on Friday November 10 2017, @04:40AM

        by Spamalope (5233) on Friday November 10 2017, @04:40AM (#595035) Homepage

        For as long as Sprint survives...

      • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Wednesday November 15 2017, @04:08PM

        by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday November 15 2017, @04:08PM (#597330) Journal

        I don't think that was AC at all. It was an FCC shill, paid by the Trump to tell us how good we have things.

        --
        Keep all chemicals out of the reach of meth heads.
    • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Wednesday November 15 2017, @04:06PM

      by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday November 15 2017, @04:06PM (#597329) Journal

      I don't think anyone said "there is no competition". I think that most of us are agreed that many areas are monopolies, and many other areas are virtual monopolies. Some duopolies. You happen to be lucky enough to live in an area where the big boys go head to head in competition.

      Of course, you didn't tell us how sucky any of those offerings are. Do you have fiber for less than $50/month? If not, you're being screwed, just less than most of the rest of us.

      --
      Keep all chemicals out of the reach of meth heads.
  • (Score: 2) by aclarke on Tuesday November 07 2017, @02:26PM

    by aclarke (2049) on Tuesday November 07 2017, @02:26PM (#593643) Homepage

    I chose "5 or more" even though I have no wire-based options. Two fixed wireless ISPs, at least one satellite option, and all the major mobile companies. This is in rural Ontario. But no cable, DSL, or fibre. Still, 10/2 Mbps is workable.

  • (Score: 2) by urza9814 on Thursday November 09 2017, @01:11AM (2 children)

    by urza9814 (3954) on Thursday November 09 2017, @01:11AM (#594332) Journal

    At least two, depending on how your count.

    I'm in an apartment so satellite and such aren't an option. The apartment complex has contracts with Cox cable and Verizon Fios so that's pretty much the options. I'm on Fios because Cox is just a horrible company and years of dealing with Comcast at my parents' place have soured me on cable in general. Seems that was a good choice though, as my neighbors on Cox have had significantly more outages than I have. The Fios damn near never goes down. I wish they'd get IPv6 though, they've been saying it's "coming soon" for more than five years now. Sounds like it's just never going to happen from various posts I've ready elsewhere. I've got a 75/75mbps plan for around $80/month which seems pretty good for the US...Cox and Fios pretty much match prices exactly, but FiOS has a two year contract. But I've been here five years now so that was definitely worth it for the improved quality of service.

    Could also do something cellular I guess. I've got a grandfathered unlimited data plan on my phone that I've been clinging to for a while now, and I'll use that occasionally (I usually tether if I'm using my work PC at home, as I prefer not to let that on my home network...my network security is rather paranoid. I generally tether for guests too.) I can get 15mbps so that would be reasonable for home use I guess, but on any other carrier (or if I upgrade my phone since my carrier has stopped offering it) the data fees would be absurd so that wouldn't be a realistic option.

    • (Score: 2) by isostatic on Friday November 10 2017, @05:52PM (1 child)

      by isostatic (365) on Friday November 10 2017, @05:52PM (#595225) Journal

      (I usually tether if I'm using my work PC at home, as I prefer not to let that on my home network...my network security is rather paranoid. I generally tether for guests too.)

      Why not have a guest network outside your normal LAN and DMZ, which only routes to the internet via a dedicated VPN?

      • (Score: 2) by urza9814 on Friday November 10 2017, @08:17PM

        by urza9814 (3954) on Friday November 10 2017, @08:17PM (#595315) Journal

        Why not have a guest network outside your normal LAN and DMZ, which only routes to the internet via a dedicated VPN?

        Too much work :)
        Plus VPNs cost money which I'm not gonna spend for something I use so rarely...

        But yeah mostly I just haven't had reason to bother yet, since I already consider my phone an unsecured network anyway...putting an additional guest network fully outside of my existing LAN/DMZ would be a lot more work than just plugging in an extra router, because I've got two LANs already, one for my personal systems and one for servers, and I've got multiple domain names that route to my home with a reverse proxy set up to route the incoming requests, and I usually block stuff off when I'm not using it so then I'd end up enabling/disabling everything two separate places and having to screw with triple NATing...easier to just use the phone :)

        At some point I'll probably set up something like that...although more likely it'll just be public wifi on a parallel LAN with half the internet blocked anyway because screw anyone who wants Facebook ;) But I'm working on other parts of my network right now, I'll get around to that when I actually need it...

  • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Thursday November 09 2017, @09:42PM

    by Freeman (732) on Thursday November 09 2017, @09:42PM (#594857) Journal

    I have a fixed point wireless connection that is spotty, but better than what I've gotten so far. Satellite which I'm not going to touch, I think a couple different ones. I use my cell data for games. I could get a couple other cell providers. But, 0 wired. I also don't have a home phone, 'cause this is the 21st century.

    --
    "I said in my haste, All men are liars." Psalm 116:11
  • (Score: 3, Informative) by Hartree on Friday November 10 2017, @05:02PM

    by Hartree (195) on Friday November 10 2017, @05:02PM (#595192)

    Comcast does the cable modem service for the small town I live in.
    I repeatedly get mail flyers telling me I can get Frontier as an ISP. It turns out that they don't serve the town I live in with internet (just land line phone), but the fliers keep on coming.

  • (Score: 2) by isostatic on Friday November 10 2017, @05:43PM (1 child)

    by isostatic (365) on Friday November 10 2017, @05:43PM (#595220) Journal

    I have the main connection, but should that go down, or have issues, I have a backup 3G connection that routing will automatically fail over (natting of course). I can choose this one without a failure via a manual selection of via using a specific vlan.

    I'm shocked that people have 5 connections into their home network, how many failures do you need to cope with!?

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by urza9814 on Friday November 10 2017, @08:18PM

      by urza9814 (3954) on Friday November 10 2017, @08:18PM (#595318) Journal

      I'm shocked that people have 5 connections into their home network, how many failures do you need to cope with!?

      Meh, if those are all cable lines that seems reasonable ;)

  • (Score: 2) by Nerdfest on Wednesday November 15 2017, @12:59PM

    by Nerdfest (80) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday November 15 2017, @12:59PM (#597262)

    There are 2 main providers and several resellers of their services, plus other options using satellite, microwave, etc. Those are generally only really worth it if you're quite rural and can't get good LTE coverage.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Runaway1956 on Wednesday November 15 2017, @03:53PM

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday November 15 2017, @03:53PM (#597324) Journal

    My choices are DSL, dialup, or sattelite. DSL sucks, sattelite lags like hell, and dialup sucks worse.

    --
    Keep all chemicals out of the reach of meth heads.
  • (Score: 2) by tizan on Tuesday November 21 2017, @10:51PM

    by tizan (3245) on Tuesday November 21 2017, @10:51PM (#599929)

    There are many smaller ISPs piggy backing on only one NSP. CenturyLink is both and ISP and NSP ...we have a few options of smaller ISPs at a slightly higher price than going straight to CenturyLink for the ISP service

    Theoretically we can also use Hughes Net or Cable ...but we don't have cable tv.

  • (Score: 2) by LoRdTAW on Monday November 27 2017, @02:33PM

    by LoRdTAW (3755) Subscriber Badge on Monday November 27 2017, @02:33PM (#602058) Journal

    Using a wireless router or hotspot you can count wireless providers as ISP's. That should increase the numbers for many Americans to 5+ as we have four major wireless providers and two satellite providers.
    I have access to :
    Spectrum Cable (formerly Time warner cable)
    Verizon (Fios and wireless)
    T Mobile
    Sprint
    ATT
    Megapath DSL
    Starband (satellite)
    Spacenet (satellite)

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