Your ISP/Carrier is great for some, sucks for others-factors to consider

Along with writing for Pocketables, theITbaby, being the president of a neighborhood association, landlord, IT guy, and a few other jobs I tend to forget, I admin a district wide group that one of the most common questions asked is what internet service provider is good, and what phone service provider is?

It leads to many arguments and tales of misery and honestly it’s because the area is big and it’s a block to block battle with each of these. T-Mobile’s a good example here because I know exactly where my tower is and the neighborhood. In a direct line of sight of the tower I get about 440mbit p/s. That’s extremely fast. I mean that’s faster than I need and I need fast.

If I’m in most houses or interior areas in the area it’s still in the 200 range (8-10 4K streams). My house and one street closer however are significantly slower than if I get a little farther away from the tower. Something to do with the lay of the land, a large brick building, etc. Literally two houses down and 40 more feet away the speed doubles at the sidewalk. It’s just the lay of the land and how the signal works.

My street goes from about 400mbit six houses down to topping out at 200at my house, and was unusable a few years ago one block closer to the tower.

Just the lay of the land. Always importantly to ask and at least give a street because it’s a block to block fight with cell service. Same with ISPs.

Comcast/XFinity were the absolute worst for me and my business. I have 20 years of documented complaints, problems, etc. with them. I’ve got in my neighborhood a pitchfork-wielding set of people who agree with me, but five blocks over they’re the best ISP there is available and nobody has major troubles with them except when the power goes out (their backup UPSs notoriously fail taking down the phone and data they sell.)

AT&T is where it’s at on my street. No competition. Fiber, no slowdowns, downtime, other than the Christmas bombing, is at about 6 minutes in three years, it’s great. For me. On my street. Fiber isn’t available everywhere though and AT&T’s other offerings are evidently garbage in about a quarter of our district.

There’s also been some major complaints about inability to get repairs, oversubscribing fiber lines to the point they were pulling active customers offline to plug in new customers because of port limitations, and woes shouted on high. Those complaints were also mostly within a five block radius, all evidently being served out of the same CO, which is different from mine.

So yeah, when someone asks “what’s a good <cell or ISP> in this area?” Let them know your experience on your street, and let them know their street experience may vary vastly.

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Paul E King

Paul King started with GoodAndEVO in 2011, which merged with Pocketables, and as of 2018 he's evidently the owner. He lives in Nashville, works at a film production company, is married with two kids. Facebook | Twitter | Donate | More posts by Paul | Subscribe to Paul's posts