When comes to choosing an internet connectivity solution, There are a lot of options from which to choose. But is every “low cost” deal really a good deal? Some providers may sound like they’re giving you the cheapest deal, but when the time comes to turn on your internet and start browsing, you might find you have been sold short.

That’s why we have put together a comprehensive guide on what you should look at when signing up for an internet service.

FIBRE, LTE, 4G, 5G, WIFI or ADSL? What’s the difference?

WiFi

First things first – all modern internet connection types will give you WiFi. WiFi just means that your internet signal is being transmitted from your router (modem) around your home – allowing you to connect to the internet with your phone, laptop or SMART device, without the necessity of a cable. It just means wireless internet. Having Wifi is dependent on your router, and it is available with all internet connectivity types.

ADSL

ADSL is the older technology of the three. ADSL runs on Telkom’s copper telephone network infrastructure and is slow, unreliable, and expensive to run. ADSL is also on its way out for good. Steer clear of ADSL if you can.

LTE, 3G, 4G & 5G

LTE is wireless “airborne” internet which travels from the internet supply tower directly to a SIM card inside your LTE router (modem). 3G, 4G, and 5G are all “generations” of LTE which are being rolled out by the infrastructure providers.

Advantages of LTE:

No Installation – Some find LTE to be convenient because it doesn’t require any kind of installation.

Unfortunately, LTE has some major drawbacks, and it’s important to be aware of these before making your choice.

Disadvantages of LTE:

Most LTE packages give you plenty of “off-peak” data – but very limited “peak” data. This means you run out of data to use during “peak” network times when you want to stream and use your internet, and you will have to top-up with additional gigs of data. Top- Up data is usually much more expensive than your “In-bundle data”.

LTE is Unreliable – the signal is dependent on factors such as weather, how many people are on the network, barriers like valleys and mountains, and even radio and microwave signals can cause interference.

LTE Speed Variations – providers will sell to you on “best-case scenario” speeds, but if you read between the lines you will see that they always say “up to” and will never guarantee a certain speed because their speeds falter so much.

LTE is expensive – The starting price on most LTE packages are misleading. When you look at how little data you are getting for your money, and when you are allowed to use it (usually off-peak times) you will realize that LTE is actually the MOST EXPENSIVE internet connection type, gig for gig.

FIBRE Internet

Fibre Internet makes use of fibre optic cable which transmits information in binary code, using light which travels along the fibre. The result is that your information is moving at the speed of light, and is only restricted by the devices it’s using. Fibre is fastest, cheapest, and most reliable form of internet available.

Advantages of Fibre:

Fibre is the most economical (cheap) form of internet available.

Fibre is the fastest internet connection available.

Faircom Fibre packages do not limit when you may use your data – so there is no difference between peak and off-peak network times.

Fibre is the most reliable – because it doesn’t rely on copper cables which degrade, and it isn’t affected by weather or any other external factors.

Fibre is almost everywhere – There are a number of underlying infrastructure providers who have been aggressively rolling out Fibre installations across South Africa, which means it’s almost everywhere.

Free Set-Up – if you sign up for Fibre with Faircom, we will provide you with free installation, a free to use router (modem) and free world-class technical support

Disadvantages of Fibre

Installation time – in some areas you may wait up to 5 days for your Fibre to be installed to your home.

Find out more about the different packages on these technologies here.