What Education Activities Can My Kids Do On Our Home Internet Over Summer Vacation?

Summer vacation can be an exciting time for children, but it can also be hard to fill up their days without the structure of school. In order to make sure your kids’ downtime doesn’t become simply that – downtime – invest in some educational activities that they can do on your home residential broadband internet. These will not only help them learn new skills but also give them something fun to work on as the weather gets warmer and summer vacation gets underway.

Educational YouTube channels

YouTube is a great way to provide both entertaining and educational content for your children. There are countless channels that you can subscribe to and explore new ideas, concepts, and topics with your children while they’re out of school.  Make sure you double and triple-check the content they’re watching. Even go as far as pre-screening everything, and don’t let them watch YouTube unattended.

Educational podcasts

Podcasts provide a great way to engage your kids (and yourself) in a fun, educational format. Podcasts are essentially free radio shows that you listen to online. They’re both entertaining and educational. You can easily subscribe to podcasts by visiting sites like iTunes or Google Play Music, which have hundreds of options for listeners of all ages and interests.

Fun science activities

If your child loves science, look up some easy science experiments online. With adult supervision, a few pre-planned activities would be amazing to help them better understand the world around them.

Coding fun

If your children have an interest in gaming, consider getting them a coding app. There are several apps online that can teach them how to code, easily, while having fun!

Fun geography activities

The key to keeping your kids intellectually engaged while they’re out of school is finding fun and interactive ways for them to learn. One great way they can use your home computer or tablet during their free time is through interactive geography games. A favorite online game that provides hours of entertainment—and learning opportunities—is Virtual City, a geo-caching game that lets users collect various items as they travel around earth at a scale of 1:1.

So, don’t dread summer vacation. Technology makes it easy to keep learning even during the summer. You’ll probably need WiFi to keep everything going, though! If you’re looking for the best Utah internet provider, contact Utah Broadband to set up a time to get your internet set up.

The Surprising Ways Weather Can Mess With Your Home Internet

If you live in a part of the country that gets cold winters, you’ve probably seen those ads on TV selling snow boots and winter gear. Unfortunately, though, if it snows where you live, it can also cause major problems with your home internet service when temperatures drop below freezing. Here are some tips to help you stay connected when the weather outside is frightful.

Learn about lightning

Lightning is typically viewed as a natural force that can’t be stopped, but there are a few things you can do to prevent it from interfering with your internet service. The obvious solution is to turn off your computer if lightning has been spotted near your area, but did you know lightning often strikes outside of thunderstorms? In fact, most lightning strikes occur independently of storms, which means even a clear day could see some electricity zapping around.

Learn about rain and water damage

It’s an unfortunate fact of life: Water gets everywhere—even inside your house. When it rains, water from rain and storm drains runs off roofs and pavement into gutters and downspouts, which often direct that excess water directly toward your home’s foundation. If you have a basement or low-lying areas in your yard, heavy rainfall can cause those areas to flood. That standing water is no good for your home’s health–especially not your electronics. 

Learn about extreme temperatures

It’s simple: The hotter it is outside, the more electricity your home uses. It sounds obvious but keeping an eye on your energy use in extreme temperatures can be a good way to find energy savings down to the last dollar. Also, watch out for rolling blackouts and power surges that could harm your electronics or disrupt your online usage.

Take precautions, create solutions

If your home’s internet performance has been suffering recently, you might not be imagining things. Extreme weather can negatively impact wireless internet, and it’s important to be prepared for such occurrences. However, with a few precautions and some solutions, you can improve your wireless internet during extreme weather events. Always talk to your broadband internet service provider if you’re having trouble with your internet.

No matter where you live, certain types of weather can have a significant impact on your internet connection. We’ve answered some of our most common questions about how weather impacts your internet connection and what to do if you run into trouble. If you live in Utah, and you’re looking for a Utah residential service internet provider, give Utah Broadband a call. We encourage our customers to call us anytime so we can help troubleshoot any issues they may be having with their service rain or shine.

What Kind of Internet Connection Do I Need to Power my Smart Devices?

Smart home technology is great, but it isn’t going to do you much good if you don’t have a strong internet connection to support it all. The question, then, is what kind of internet connection do you need? If your smart home devices require an internet connection to work at all, then you definitely need reliable high-speed access. However, what if your smart home devices can operate without an internet connection? In this post, we’ll discuss both options and help you decide which one works best for your situation.

Not all routers are the same

For example, if you’re thinking about adding a couple of Nest Protects to your existing WiFi network, you might be wondering if you can use that old router your sister gave you three years ago. Unfortunately, most older routers can’t handle more than 10 or so connected devices at once—and that’s including your computer and any other internet-enabled gadgets. In addition, older routers can sometimes be problematic. So, if you’re setting up a new system with new devices, consider getting yourself a new router.

How well does WiFi perform over distance?

Most Wi-Fi networks don’t reach their rated speed at distances over 15 meters (roughly 50 feet). You can extend your signal range by adding access points that connect wirelessly to your router or gateway, but bear in mind that you will still be limited by what your router can handle. Also, depending on your location and terrain, walls and floors may interfere with wireless signals. So test out any new devices around a good distance from where you plan to use them.

How many devices can it connect to at once?

If you’re planning on setting up several smart devices in your house, you should ask yourself how many devices you want to connect at once. Each new device added to your router will weaken its signal strength. For example, if you have many connected devices and suddenly someone else in your household wants to use that same network – there’s going to be trouble. So make sure you plan out how many devices you want to be connected to simultaneously. 

You also might want to consider creating more than one network, if possible. Then put your smart devices on one and use the other network for your internet browsing, streaming, etc.

Why would you even want 2.4GHz if there’s also 5GHz available?

If you live in an area with significant interference, 2.4GHz might be your only option. Other than that, though, 5GHz is generally preferred because it’s better at penetrating walls and ceilings (less prone to interference). If you have an older device that uses 2.4GHz, 5GHz might not be an option; similarly, newer devices will offer both options but will generally prefer one over another. This might sound like gibberish, but if you need more info, find a local service provider by searching broadband internet in my area.
Try not to stress too much over upgrading some of the devices in your home to smart devices. If you do end up needing help, the knowledgeable technicians at Utah residential internet can answer your questions.  Give Utah Broadband a call today! We can help you get your internet set up and running smoothly.

Can I Use More Than One Router in My Home? The Answer May Surprise You!

With the increased use of wireless devices and smart home technologies, many people wonder if they can use more than one router in their home at once. On the surface, it seems like a simple question that has an easy answer: yes, you can use multiple routers in your home, but depending on how you want to implement them, there may be downsides to doing so. This guide will explain some of those pros and cons in full detail.

Yes, you can use multiple routers, but…

One router is enough for most homes. However, if you live in a large home or have dead spots—and your budget allows—it’s easy to add a second or third wireless access point (AP) to expand your Wi-Fi coverage or look into upgrading to a Mesh system. You can do it yourself or hire a pro to help. Here are some tips on how to connect and configure multiple routers without breaking your network.

No, it will not be much better

Due to how wireless signals are transmitted and received, using two or more routers will not be much better. In fact, it is common for multiple wireless routers to interfere with each other rather than improve your network’s performance. If you want to strengthen your network and provide a better connection throughout your house, consider investing in a Mesh system.

Why am I limited to 1 router?

When we think of networking, we tend to picture a small room with multiple devices plugged into one single jack. This is fine for some smaller areas, but when you have a large house or office it’s time to rethink your networking setup. Most homes have multiple rooms that need connectivity, and sometimes it can be hard to provide adequate coverage for everything. This is where a wireless access point comes into play: devices are connected via an Ethernet cable rather than through an electrical outlet, however your home must have Ethernet cabling run to each room.

What’s the difference between 3 WiFi bands, 2.4GHz vs 5GHz vs 60GHz WiFi?

When it comes to WiFi, most routers are either 2.4GHz or 5GHz. So what’s different between these bands, and which band should you choose for your WiFi network? In a nutshell, each of these WiFi bands has its own unique features, including range, data speed and interference potential. If you’re curious about the different WiFi bands, talk to a broadband internet service provider for more information and about what might work best for you.

How do extenders work and what are they good for?

If you’re just looking to get more coverage in Wifi weak points around your house, consider a Wi-Fi extender, or wireless range extender. This is a device designed to connect to your existing wireless network and rebroadcast its signal. If your Wi-Fi signal isn’t reaching every corner of your house, an extender can help fill those gaps. And if you want faster speeds for streaming video or audio around your house, an extender can push that data faster across multiple access points.

What else can I do to increase WiFi speed if all else fails?

If WiFi isn’t fast enough for your streaming needs, consider getting an extender or wireless bridge to place on a different floor of your house, if possible. These little boxes pick up your existing network and rebroadcast it farther out into your house (provided it’s in line-of-sight of a window). If that still doesn’t do it, then get yourself an Ethernet cable—WiFi and Ethernet are not mutually exclusive; they can peacefully coexist.

If you’re looking to get the very best in residential internet service, give Utah Broadband a call today. 

The Dos and Don’ts of Keeping Your Kids Safe on Your Home Internet

Many parents may be aware of the online dangers their children face, but are unsure of how to properly protect them from these risks. With so many stories in the news about child predators and cyberbullying, it can seem like your child is just one wrong click away from danger. However, with just a few simple steps you can make sure your kids are safe when using your home internet connection. By following the dos and don’ts listed below, you can help ensure that your children’s online experiences are productive and positive ones!

Know your children’s activity online

The world is changing every day and it’s important that your children know how to behave safely online. There are some simple things you can do that will help ensure they stay safe in what can be a very dangerous environment. Make sure they know never to give out personal information, to always use protection when chatting with others, and don’t meet anyone they don’t know. Even if they think they know people online, they don’t truly know who they are chatting with, at the end of the day.

Listen to your children when they talk about their “friends”

Cyberbullying is a major concern for many parents, as it’s easy for kids to get involved in fights with strangers they meet online. Parents should be sure to listen to their children when they talk about friends. For example, if their child tells them that someone has been bullying them at school, it’s probably a good idea to check out who that person is online. 

In addition, your child might be cyberbullied by people they don’t know in real life. So, be sure to keep an eye on that, as well. If there’s any hint of cyberbullying take action quickly. 

Talk to other parents

If you’re worried about your kids being online, it’s a good idea to talk to other parents about their concerns. Chances are someone else has had similar worries, and you can probably get some ideas from them.

Talk to teachers, if necessary

You’re not a teacher, but teachers know their students best. Check in with teachers if you sense that your child’s behavior has changed drastically, or if you’ve witnessed cyberbullying. Teachers might’ve seen or heard something, and they can keep an eye on things at school. In addition, speak with your child about what they’re doing online at school. 

You should also consider your own residential broadband. Make sure it’s a safe space for your kids, and keep an eye on what they are doing online.

Set up a separate network

One simple way to keep your kids safe is to set up a separate wireless network. Connect your desktop computer or laptop to your router with an Ethernet cable. This creates a local network that keeps kids away from other devices (such as smartphones, smart TVs, gaming consoles, etc.) that could expose them to inappropriate content. To access these devices, they’ll need to log into the local Wi-Fi network you create—and enter your password each time.

Keep an eye on your child’s profile

Privacy settings are a great first step toward keeping your child safe online. By default, Facebook limits access to other users’ profiles to those with whom they’re friends, but you can change that if you want. Log in to your child’s profile and click Privacy Settings on the left-hand menu bar. Next, click Edit Privacy Settings under Who can see my stuff? Change who has access so that only people you approve see his or her posts. 

While it may seem “big brother-ish” , watch your children’s online profiles. Have an open phone and laptop policy where you have all of their passwords, and they know you have access to everything. Keep an eye out for anything that might seem suspicious or strange. Criminals are just a click away from your kids sitting in your home. That’s a very scary thought. So, make sure you keep an eye on things and your kids are well educated in online safety.

Online safety starts at home

While it’s great that kids have a tablet, smartphone, or laptop to keep them entertained, it’s not so fun when they can get into a ton of trouble online. It doesn’t matter how tech-savvy your children are—protecting them from predators, inappropriate content, and cyberbullying starts at home. 

While you’re keeping your kids safe, keep in mind there are so many good things the internet has to offer as well. Make sure you have the best broadband internet so you and your family can enjoy the good things the internet has to offer; Such as streaming a movie for family movie night, working from home, getting homework done, or chatting with family out of state.

What Can I Do to Keep My Home Wifi Network and Devices Safe?

Cyber security is a bigger and bigger concern as more of our lives become attached to technology. Stories about things like strangers hacking into baby monitors, accounts being stolen and more have been around for a while. However, it seems like recently there’s been more of an uptick in these sorts of incidents. While nothing is full-proof, there are a few things you can do to keep your home Wi-Fi a safe place. Here are a few suggestions.

Have a Strong Password

You are only as good as your password. Yes, hackers can run brute-force attacks which mean they can go through thousands of passwords in a short amount of time. However, if you have a very strong password, it can take them too long to crack it to make it worth their while. Everyone has a different idea of what makes a strong password. However, the basics are to have 10-14 characters. Don’t use pets names, kids names or important dates that people could easily find out (your birthday, your anniversary, etc.) Then use a combination of upper and lower case letters, numbers and at least one special character. 

As a general rule, you should never-ever reuse passwords. That way, if you ever do get a password hacked, it’s only for one account. Hopefully, you can get it changed before too much damage is done. Specifically, when it comes to your Wi-Fi password, make sure the password is totally unique from any other password you use, and be careful who you give it to. Only let people you really know well use your master Wi-Fi account and password.

Create a Guest Network

If you need to have Wi-Fi available for visitors, set up a guest network and only let guests use it. Never give them the password to your master Wi-Fi account. Guest networks can be pretty easily added when you set up your modem. It means that people won’t have access to all of the devices you have on your master Wi-Fi account. If you ever do need to change the guest account password, that’s also much easier than having to change the Wi-Fi password on every device you use on your master account.

Switch the IP Address from the Default

This is one trick that not everyone might know. When you set up your router, it sometimes has a default IP address. It is a good idea to switch from the default one for security. While it’s not totally necessary, it can really make an impact on your network security. Nefarious individuals can spoof or backdoor off an IP address that they can figure out. Default IP addresses are much easier to get than you might think, so keep that in mind.

Two-Factor Authentication

Two-factor authentication can save you if someone manages to get your password for an important account. The way this works is if someone tries to log in with your password, the website will text or email you a code to enter. So, if someone is trying to get into your account, you’ll get a notification and be able to change your password quickly. The other person also won’t be able to log in without this code. So, it adds an extra layer of protection. 

As a note, if you have two-factor authentication set up and you forget your password, it can make it more difficult to reset. So, make sure if the account offers you one-time login authentication passcodes, you take them and keep them somewhere safe.

Monitor the Devices on Your Wi-Fi

Did you know that many internet providers offer apps you can download to your phone to see who’s on your network? You also might be able to log in from your computer to see who’s on it. Make sure you keep a close eye on this. If you see a device that you don’t know, take it off your network and change your Wi-Fi password to something much stronger.

As a side note, get to know the names of your regular devices so you don’t accidentally kick one of them off your Wi-Fi. Sometimes cameras, doorbells, smart thermostats, etc. have weird names. So, do some troubleshooting if you see a device you don’t know on your network. Account for all of the smart devices you have, and if one stops functioning when you take it off your network, it might be that smart device with a weird name.

Be Aware of What Devices You Use in Your Home

The simple truth is that anything connected to the internet can be hacked. So, think twice about what you connect to the internet. All of these things can be connected to the internet:

  • Smart TVs
  • Wi-Fi Baby Monitors 
  • Cameras
  • Doorbells
  • Alexas
  • Door locks
  • Garage door openers
  • Alarm systems
  • Thermostats
  • Tablets
  • Computers
  • Phones

Many other devices can be connected, and there will be more over the years as technology gets more advanced. So, keep in mind that if you don’t want something to be susceptible to being hacked, don’t use Wi-Fi-enabled or smart devices in those instances. For example, some people prefer to use baby monitors that don’t use Wi-Fi. That means those cameras will only be able to be monitored from your home, but it keeps them a bit more secure from hackers. 

While nothing is full-proof, following these rules when setting up your home or office network will help increase your security. If you’d like to work with a knowledgeable internet provider that is serious about security, give Utah Broadband a call today.

How Can I Extend My Wi-Fi Reach Around My Home?

Have you been noticing that certain parts of your home don’t have great Wi-Fi coverage? That can be frustrating especially if you’re doing remote work, remote learning or you’re just trying to stream the latest episode of your favorite show. No matter the reason, you need your Wi-Fi working within a larger range and fast. So, here are a few ideas for extending the Wi-Fi range within your home.

Needing more bandwidth

Do you know what bandwidth is? Many people mistake it for speed, but it’s a little different. While it certainly is tied to speed, bandwidth is the amount of data you can send over your Wi-Fi connection. It’s a lot like a hose. The bigger the hose, the more water you can get through it. Adding more bandwidth is like making the hose bigger so more data can get through. Knowing how much bandwidth and speed you need is important when determining the kind of Wi-Fi you need. However, this probably won’t help much with the actual range of the internet in your home. It should help your internet be faster and work more seamlessly, though. 

Getting an extender

So, you may have heard about extenders for your Wi-Fi. Extenders are devices that can help amplify your Wi-Fi signal throughout your home. You can buy these at most electronics stores. Also, if you happen to see boosters in the same place, Wi-Fi extenders and boosters are essentially the same things.

The directions vary on how to set up different extenders. Essentially, you plug in the extender close to your router, connect it and then you can move the extender. You can plug in the extender to an outlet in the part of your home where you need your Wi-Fi amplified, and away you go. It should help extend your Wi-Fi to hard-to-reach parts of your home.

There are a few things to consider before trying an amplifier or booster, though. They absolutely do work, but they can be affected by different factors. Some of these factors include how much demand there is on your internet, the speed of your Wi-Fi and how far away it is from your router. 

Changing the type of internet you have

If your internet isn’t meeting your needs for any reason, you might have the wrong kind of internet connection for your home. The first thing you need to do is evaluate your internet needs. So, how many devices do you have on your internet? Do you need Wi-Fi or a wired connection? Do you stream movies or games? How big is your home? Then you can go from there.

For example, if you have a satellite connection and you need more speed, coverage and bandwidth, a cable connection might be better. If you need quicker and a more secure internet, fiber might be better. Check with Utah Broadband about their new home fiber internet offerings and other internet options to see what the best fit is for you. Knowing what internet connection types there are and how they differ from each other can help you determine if you want to change your connection type.

Another thing you can do is change the frequency of your internet connection. You can change that via your internet settings. A different frequency might be less crowded. So, it might speed up and extend your Wi-Fi signal, but there’s no guarantee. 

Get a powerline network adapter

Powerline network adapters are a great concept. They plug your devices into the existing wiring of your home. They work a lot like a hotspot, and they don’t have to be located next to your router. They’re easy to install, are pretty cheap and work well to extend your Wi-Fi. However, you have to make sure you install security so neighbors can’t use it.

Moving or replacing your router

If you want an easier and less drastic option, you can always try moving or replacing your Wi-Fi router. Routers do get old. So, to maintain the kind of service you need and expect, you have to replace your router every few years. If you have a fairly new router, you can always try moving it to a different part of your home. This may help, or it may decrease internet connection in other parts of your house. So, just keep that in mind as you’re making these changes.

Consider a mesh networking system

You might be wondering, “What is a mesh network?” or “Is mesh Wi-Fi better than traditional Wi-Fi?” Well, a mesh network is made up of nodes around your home that can all connect to each other in different ways. The nodes all work together to make sure your home is blanketed with the internet, and the nodes are all connected to one router. You won’t need to manually connect to each node as your devices should automatically connect to the closest node. This means great coverage of Wi-Fi in your home and more seamless control. 

A few cons of a mesh network are that they are expensive and tedious to set up. There’s also no guarantee the internet will run faster, just that you’ll have better coverage throughout your home.
No matter which option you decide to go with, make sure to call Utah Broadband about all of your home internet needs.

Virtual Schooling – What Internet Speed Do I Need For My Kids’ Remote Schooling?

The year 2020 introduced us to many new things, one of them being distance learning while schools go virtual. With the pandemic continuing on, it doesn’t look like virtual schooling at home is going anywhere. This might be taking a toll on your internet, and you might need more bandwidth and speed. Here are a few things to consider when you need better and faster internet for work, school and leisure within your home.

Consider How Many People Will Be Using Your Internet

The first thing to think about is how many people are in your home, and do they all use the internet? If you, your spouse and your kids are all working or doing school from home, that’s going to take significantly more bandwidth and speed than it did when just one person or nobody was at home all day. It’s also important to keep in mind that work and school aren’t the only things that require the internet. Do you have gamers in your home, and do you stream movies/media? There are other sneaky devices you might not think about that run on the internet as well. If you have smart devices such as thermostats, cameras, doorbells, Alexas, etc. those all run on Wi-Fi as well.

Also, make sure to take into consideration what your children’s schooling needs are. Do they need video capabilities, or are they just doing digital work? This will determine how much bandwidth you’ll need.

How Do Kids Use the Internet for School?

As mentioned above, there are a few ways that kids can use the internet for remote learning. Depending on their grade level and the type of class, they might need more or less bandwidth. For example, if they’re on a Zoom video call all day, that will take more speed than simply using word processing software and turning in assignments to a teacher. Some classes offer gamified learning, which can also take up more speed and data. As you’re deciding on the bandwidth, speak to each of your children about the types of work and video/game capabilities they might be using during at-home learning. 

What Connection Type of Internet Would Work Best?

Depending on how much internet you’re using and what you are using it for, there are several different connection types to consider. The first is a cable connection. This is often through your cable provider, and it runs through the wiring from your cable TV. It’s typically fast and secure, so it would be good for video meetings, gamified learning and word processing. However, keep in mind that this connection can be slowed if many people in your area are using it all at once.

Another option to consider is DSL internet. It uses the phone lines to connect you to the internet, but it doesn’t tie up the phone line like our old friend, dial-up. DSL is usually pretty speedy and good for most mediums of online learning. However, DSL can sometimes come with data caps so keep that in mind if your household uses a lot of data.

There’s also a fiber optic or fiber connection. It runs through fiber optic cables and is some of the fastest internet around. The problem is that the upfront cost can be a bit hefty. Once it’s installed, though, it’s a great choice.

While there are other connection types, these three tend to be more prevalent and should work well for most at-home learning scenarios.

What Speed of Internet Do You Really Need?

So what speed of internet do you really need? If you’ve considered how many people will be using the Wi-Fi, what they’ll be using the Wi-Fi for, and how many devices will be on your Wi-Fi, that’s a great start. It’s important to talk with your internet service provider about all of these factors. If you’re looking for a few examples of how much speed is used for certain activities, here are a few. Simply checking your email would be around 1 Mbps and simple web browsing will be around 5Mbps. Streaming video and video meetings will be around 20Mbps. If you have a gamer in your household, that’ll be around 20Mbps. Lastly, if you or any of your family members enjoy streaming, that will be around 35 Mbps. So, keep these numbers in mind as you make your choice.

It’s also important to note that you should look at the upload and download speeds. Don’t know the difference? Here’s a quick explanation. The download speed is how fast data populate onto your device. The upload speed is how fast your internet can send data from your device out to the internet. Both download and upload speeds are super important even if the download speed is usually the more talked about of the two.

Making sure you have enough bandwidth and speed to go around is important. Interruptions to your children’s schooling or your work can be greatly minimized if you have the right kind of home internet connection and speed. Let Utah Broadband help you make sure your internet is running smoothly.

Internet Connection Types – What They Are & How They’re Different From Each Other

You know you have the internet, but do you know what type of connection you have? This might leave you scratching your head. Many people just simply have a go-to, or they’ve just had the internet through the same provider for years. So, maybe you haven’t considered that there might be a better connection type for your home or office? There are six different connection types, and they all have different pros and cons. Let’s explore what each of them is, from our top pick to our last choice when it comes to internet connection types. 

Fiber

Fiber or fiber optic is an internet connection that runs through fiber-optic cables. These cables are very thin and made out of glass. Fiber is really different from other connections since it uses cable when a lot of other connection types use the phone line’s copper wires. 

This technology is amazing and can carry much more data in a quicker manner than traditional connections. It has a great quality of connection that is immune to electromagnetic interference–making it faster and more seamless. If security is important to you, fiber also doesn’t have signals (since the information is carried by light), so it won’t be showing off your data to the world. 

One of the disadvantages to fiber is it is prone to what is called fiber fuses. This is where there are problems with the glass in the cables that are met with too much light, which can hurt the cables. The cables can also be damaged if you’re doing construction in your home and they accidentally get cut. It’s also important to keep in mind that the upfront cost to set up fiber in your home might be more expensive. Over time, it is cheaper than other options, but that upfront cost can be a deterrent.

So if you’re looking for a pure and fast internet connection, the download and upload speeds of fiber are amazing. It will get you better streaming for your TVs, games and other devices.

Fixed Wireless Connection

Have you heard of a fixed wireless connection? It’s a high-speed service that is especially great for people who live in more rural areas. When you live somewhere rural, often internet providers and services are limited. If this sounds like you, a fixed wireless connection might be great for your home or office. It also runs through airwaves instead of wires, so you won’t have to worry about a phone line.

A  pros of using this service, besides it being available in rural areas is there are no limits on the data. In addition, it’s very reliable and fast, which is why it’s also one of our top choices when it comes to internet connections. A con of a fixed wireless connection is that it might cost you a little more than other options. The cost is more comparable to cable service internet rather than a dial-up or DSL connection. So, it can be a little more expensive, but it’s not the most costly option either.

Cable

Cable internet connections work through the wiring from your cable TV. So, if you have internet from your cable provider, this is your connection type. Cable runs through a coaxial cable and a modem. It connects to the cable modem termination system (or CMTS) for your internet provider. This type of connection is different from others because it runs through the cable network, but unlike DSL, it is not slowed down by how far it is from the CMTS.

Some of the pros of cable internet include that it’s pretty fast and secure. So, you should be able to stream, play games and complete day-to-day internet tasks pretty easily. However, since cable connections are beholden to other users in your area, you might have slower internet speeds at peak usage times. It is also typically slower than other options like fiber.

If you have a cable TV provider, sometimes bundling your internet can be cheaper than other options. So, it would be pretty easy to set up, and while not the cheapest, it’s also not the most expensive. Overall, it’s a great option if you’re looking for a good connection without having to have any kind of new wiring installed.

Cellular

A cellular connection is probably one of the most utilized connections out there simply because it is how your smartphone or internet-enabled phone/device, connects to the internet. It is facilitated by being on a network and having your device connect to your provider’s cellular network. It utilizes phone towers and a large network to do this.

The very best thing about a cellular internet connection is that it’s portable. You don’t need wires to connect, and it can go with you when you’re not home or close to a router. It’s easy to use, convenient and pretty quick. It’s also a great option when your home internet provider is having an outage. Some disadvantages of cellular include that it can’t send as much data as other wired, traditional connections. 

As mentioned above, if you are looking for a connection that can go with you out and about, cellular is your connection type. As long as you have cell service, you should be able to access the internet. 

Satellite

A satellite connection sounds like something out of a sci-fi novel, and truly, it is very different from the other internet connection types. It’s essentially your internet provider, pinging at satellites to provide you with the internet. As such, there are no wires or cables.

This can be a great option because it’s available on the go. However, it can be really slow and interrupt activities like streaming, downloading or gameplay. This is because your satellite has to connect to another satellite in space. This is called having a high ping rate or having poor latency. This is a good connection for someone looking for internet for their simple day-to-day tasks.

Dial-Up

If you are over 30, you might remember this type of internet from several years ago. It’s hard to forget the distinctive sound that is made as the internet connects to your phone line. Yes, dial-up is called dial-up because it literally uses your phone line to connect to the internet. It starts out with a modem that connects to your phone line. 

This type of connection is cheaper and easy to use. However, it does tie up your phone line and does not have fast download speeds. 

If you live in a rural area, dial-up may be your only option. If so, it’s better to have the internet than not. Though it’s not the fastest or best, it will get you where you need to go.

Finding the Internet Connection that Meets your Needs

Here are a few things to consider as you choose the kind of internet you need:

  • What are you looking to pay?
  • Are you looking for a fast connection?
  • Are you willing to pay more for speed?
  • Are you on the go a lot?
  • What devices in your home require an internet connection?

While all connection types get you the internet, there’s a big difference between speed, cost, setup and what you are going to do with the internet. For example, if you’re always streaming shows or playing games, you will want a fast and clear connection, so fiber or fixed wireless might be your best bet. If you’re just looking to do basic day-to-day activities, and you don’t do gaming or streaming, you might be able to get away with a DSL connection.

It’s also important to think about how many devices you have on your internet. Do you have multiple computers, TVs, tablets, phones and gaming systems on your network? Do not forget about other sneaky devices like doorbell cameras, regular cameras or even a robot vacuum. You might be surprised how many devices are all competing for bandwidth on your network. So, it’s important to take all of these items into consideration when selecting a network type for your home or office.

Another important thing to know is many internet packages are tiered. So, you can pay for different speeds, depending on the type of internet you are looking at. Just keep this in mind when looking at cost and speed. You also should seek out a provider based on whether you need internet for your business or internet for your home. They both vary in cost and how many devices you can have on your network at a time. 

Now that you know more about the six different connection types, you’ll be better equipped to choose the types of service you need. Consider speaking with different internet providers before making your choice since some services may be better than others in certain geographical regions. Utah Broadband is a great place to start when it comes to getting the internet that best fits your needs.

Ten Best Wireless Routers for 2022

Internet coverage is a massive part of our lives, and part of having the best coverage possible is having the best wireless router. It’s more than just going with the most tricked-out router; there are multiple points you’ll want to consider when choosing a new wireless router for 2022. 

When it comes to how much bandwidth you need, you’ll need to think about how many people will typically be accessing the network at once. Think about what they’ll be doing with their internet access (gaming? Video calls? Social media? Checking email?) 

As wireless needs increase in homes there are two major distinctions in home network types. So, what are the differences in traditional routers vs. mesh wifi routers? In short, a traditional standalone router will broadcast wifi from a single point in the home which typically works better in smaller homes or when you need to hardwire to a single point. A mesh network is multiple access points placed throughout the home to make sure you have better wireless coverage over a larger area. 

With so many different routers coming onto the market, we’ve compiled a list of our top ten best wireless routers and mesh networks for 2022. It includes: 

1. Eero Mesh: Utah Broadband’s Favorite 

With the Eero wifi 6 or Eero Pro 6, you’re choosing a mesh that gets you the most bang for your buck. A very easy to use, easy to setup wireless mesh network. Add additional Eero devices to your network seamlessly. Control your network through the eero application on Android or IOS.

Eero also contains Eero Secure, an additional service that has parental controls, including content filters and the ability to block and allow individual sites to help keep your family safe.

Utah Broadband is also an authorized dealer of Eero devices. We have professional installers that install this equipment based on your home’s needs. As well as the ability to manage your network if you so choose. If you would like to talk to our network service department about installing eero equipment in your home or pricing, please contact us at 801-717-2000 ext 1207.

2. TP-Link Deco WiFi 6 Mesh System:

Another Solid contender in the Mesh category is the TP-Link Deco at a price point of $250 for 3 units this system contends with the other big players in the industry at a pretty affordable price. 

Another system that is setup as easy as downloading an app on your IOS or Android smartphone. These devices also boast a robust set of parental controls that are setup easily in the Deco App.

3. Google Nest Wifi: 

Google Nest Wifi brings something a little unique to the table with their built in google home technology. Each point works with the router to widen coverage, as well as each device being a google home speaker that you can play music on, ask questions and more. 

At a price point of around $250 for 2 units or $300 for 3 units this is our mid tier mesh network. 

4. Linksys Velop Mesh: 

Linksys has always been a major player in the wireless industry and their Velop Mesh System is no different. Giving you up to 6000 sq ft of coverage with just 3 devices. Another setup that is just as easy as installing a mobile app. 

Starting at $350 dollars this one has a higher price tag but gives you                                     more coverage per device than some of the other systems on the list. 

5. Ubiquiti UniFi Mesh Network:

The enterprise level option on mesh networks. The Dream Machine and UniFi are meant for the largest homes and customers that are looking for full customization on their network. These devices give you access to every network statistic you could want along with some of the best coverage in the wireless industry. 

Utah Broadband also installs and manages UniFi systems if you get the system through us. Any questions or pricing can be obtained through our network services department 801-717-2000 ext 1207.

 Traditional Stand Alone Routers

1. ASUS AC1750 WiFi Router

The Asus AC 1750 is one of the most solid stand alone routers for its price on the market. At a price of around $75 dollars this router is excellent at covering apartments, townhomes, condos and smaller homes. Very easy to set up via the asus app or any device with a web browser.  

2. Linksys EA7500 Dual-Band Wi-Fi Router:

A step up in price, a step up in quality. The Linksys EA7500 is going to give a bit more coverage than our budget option. Starting at around $150 dollars this router is going to give about 2000 square feet of coverage. Along with parental controls and an easy setup with the Linksys app. 


3. TP-Link AX5400 WiFi 6 Router

As we get further down the line here we keep stepping up the game. The TP-Link AX5400 is the first WiFi 6 rated stand alone router on our list. At a $200 price point this router is capable of superior speed and coverage than the last stand alone options. Great for the frequent internet users, working from home and even gamers. 

4. TP-Link AX6000 WiFi 6 Router

The look of this router reflects its performance, out of this world. At around $250 the TP-Link AX6000 is going to give some of the best coverage and performance of a stand alone router on the market. Easy to setup, powerful technology. 

5. ASUS AX6000 WiFi 6 Gaming Router

For the gamer in your life. The Asus AX6000 is the most advanced stand alone router on our list sitting at a price of $300. This router sports 8 lan ports for various devices in the home as well as the AiMesh technology which gives you meshing capability with other compatible devices. 

The Best Router for Your Home

To continue troubleshooting, read more about why your internet is so slow and how to speed it up in our blog post. Then get the best router for your home and family with these tips. You want a router that will serve you and your family well. When pairing a good router with your residential internet plan, there’s nothing better than finding the perfect options that work well together to get you high-quality, reliable internet.

877-822-8824