Computer users are an interesting breed. They will spend their hard-earned money purchasing the fastest, most up-to-date system available, bring it home, lovingly set it up, and then tell people, “I don’t care how it works as long as it works.” Most people couldn’t tell you the difference between broadband and the E-street band. However they want to make sure their ability to surf the net, send their e-mail and transmit documents is as fast and unfettered as possible. However, the more you know about the types of service, the better equipped you are to pick the type of service that best matches your needs for all the things you want to do. Most Internet service providers offer a range of choices for the consumer to pick from. Dial Up and DSL It was a very long time ago that we told people they couldn’t call us after a certain time, because we would be on the computer. Days of the internet have certainly changed from giving a busy signal every time we want to check our mail to being able to talk on the phone, work on our computer and eat breakfast all of the same time. Dial-up was the traditional original way to access the Internet. It works through your phone system using the signal to dial out into the computer. It’s slow, and no longer an optimum choice as many types of web sites and files are too large to go quickly over dial-up. Dial up’s younger cousin DSL also works through the phone line but you can still operate the phone at the same time. It has a medium speed range and is good for people who can’t afford an expensive Internet connection, but want to do things a little faster than dial-up. Broadband When broadband came on the scene it dramatically changed the way computers process information. Run through the cable line, broadband allows files of all intricate types and large memory needs to run smoothly and quickly. Broadband enables streaming events such as speeches, concerts and movies to be played on your monitor . The bandwidth of broadband allows consumers to watch television or exchange personal photos within a few seconds. A downside to broadband is that it is more expensive and you need to have a cable server and hook-up in your area. People in rural areas sometimes are unable to receive broadband, because the cable provider does not have lines or units in that location. For most people however, broadband is the new standard way to access the Internet. Satellite service The new player on the Internet scene that Internet service providers are hoping will allow them to connect to new customers is satellite service. Much like DirecTV or other cable environments, satellite service is beamed into your house via a dish and then run through your digital cable line. Like broadband, you can still use your telephone, cable or other appliances while online. It has a very high baud transmission rate. The plus to satellite service is enabling people in rural communities to access data. The downside is satellite service does require users to have an unrestricted view of the southern sky. Trees, buildings or other things can block the signal. Satellite service also comes with some very high equipment costs as well. Overall, the more informed the user has the better choice they can make about what Internet service provider can give them the best of satisfaction at a price they can afford.