What DSL Speed is Right For You?

dsl speedAre you considering DSL, but not sure what DSL speed is right for you?  If so, then you have come to the perfect place as this article is dedicated to helping you pick the best DSL speed for you.  The article will help you by asking you questions and giving you information, but at the end you will be the one to reach the answer because it is not possible to write one article to meet every single type of need out there without taking up way too much space!  So, let’s get started:

Step 1: How Often Are You Going to Use DSL?

The first question you might want to ask is just how often you plan on using DSL.  This will be a very important factor in later decision making steps, so give it some thought.  Remember to factor in both passive and active usage as well.  For example, will your smartphone and tablet be updating apps and checking e-mails around the clock via WiFi connected to the DSL modem?  If so, remember to consider this.

You also want to take a look at your tolerance for waiting within this time.  If you work and go to school, you probably do not have a lot of free time.  Value that free time and put a premium on it and refuse to wait by moving up a tier or two when it comes to performance.

Step 2: What Do You Use DSL For?

Different tasks consume different levels of broadband data.  At the low end we have tasks such as sending basic emails and basic web browsing.  The most basic of broadband DSL speeds are fine for these tasks.  Moving up a tiny bit to video chatting and browsing websites with a lot of vide content and you want to be sure that you have at least 1 to 2 Mbps of downstream speed and at least 384 Kbps upload speeds.  Older video games with online play may also fit into this speed category, but newer games with massive player counts are going to benefit from faster connects that rate at least in the teens for downstream speeds and at least 512 Kbps upload speeds.

When you move up to this tier you can also factor in video streaming and most content downloads, but the amount of downloads you do may have a serious impact on this need and cause the figures to go up or down.   If you do online video posting or post picture streams from high-quality cameras, you will want a higher upload speed of at least 1 Mbps, and probably even faster if you can get it.

Online backups, remote access to your files, and more are a simple situation where there is nothing fast enough and there likely will never be.  These technologies are not scaling in the same way that storage and usage patterns are, so a high-end connection will always be required.

Step 3: Do You Have Any Other Broadband Interests?

The future belongs to broadband, and there are other technologies that are already out there that might impact your desires and needs.  Look a the previous step again and think about where you might be need-wise in a year or two.

Step 4: Is the DSL Speed Used By Others?

So you might have some very modest needs, but what about others in your household?  What would your cumulative needs look like if they were all added up?  That is ultimately the best yardstick, but remember that you may not all be using the connection together at the same time…right?

Step 5: How Much Money Are You Going To Spend?

This step is really so big that it could probably have been broken down into at least two different steps!  The big question here is one of value.  Simply put, we have already looked at who is using the DSL connection, how they are using it, and how often they will use it.  We should have a pretty good grasp on what might be too much or too little for your needs, but now the question is how much is it going to cost.

In order to figure this out, you are going to need to shop around (remember how I said at the start of the article that this was going to come back to you making decisions?) and see what kind of deals you can find.  Remember that you can often save money by bundling DSL and other services such as digital cable, satellite TV, cellular wireless plans, and more.