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You’ve made the leap and are on your way to a new life in Baltimore! There are many exciting decisions to make (like where to have that first great meal in a new city) and lots of work to be done to get your new home just right. So, you’ve got to get connected! However, exploring all the options for internet providers in Baltimore can be overwhelming and trying to figure out what you need can be daunting.
Should you get lightning-fast internet? The top-tier cable package? Does anyone beside your grandparents have a landline?
Getting internet, cable and/or phone services set up is a top priority – they’ll help you start building bonds in your new city and allow you to solve any issues that come up as you transition into your new digs.
Here’s what you need to know to find the right package for your needs.
Nearly everyone in Baltimore can get cable and DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) internet service. Fiber-optic internet is less popular, in part due to Baltimore’s status as an older city where infrastructure for newer formats isn’t fully supported.
Cable internet transmits data through a cable television network through a coaxial cable. DSL service transmits data over a telephone network. Meanwhile, a fiber-optic connection transmits data through plastic or glass wires as light waves.
Internet providers in Baltimore with the highest availability include Xfinity, Verizon and HughesNet. You can get bundles with internet, cable and phone from Xfinity and Verizon that can help you save money, while HughesNet is a satellite internet-only provider.
When choosing your internet service, factor in availability, speed and price to search for a plan that works for the entire household (you don’t want to be competing with a major Netflix binge while trying to host an important video meeting from the home office).
Consider these variables:
If you use the internet mainly for browsing and music streaming, you may not want to pay for the fastest internet connection (5 Mbps is often sufficient). If you’re streaming HD video and/or gaming frequently, you may need a faster connection (e.g., 20+ Mbps). Meanwhile, for simultaneous gaming and HD video streaming on multiple devices, look for a high-speed connection that’s 40 Mbps or higher.
You’ll need a higher internet speed if you have multiple household members using several devices to access online media simultaneously. For example, 20+ Mbps is fine for HD streaming and gaming by 2-4 people and 40+ Mbps is recommended for simultaneous HD streaming and gaming by 4 or more household members.
If you work from home and need to download and/or upload large media files (e.g., videos), you should get a plan with the fastest internet available in your area to minimize interruptions and frustrations. In addition, find out both the upload and download speeds to make sure they meet your needs.
You may discover you need internet on the go as you explore Baltimore. Providers like Xfinity and Verizon offer free WiFi spots throughout the city as an added benefit for customers. Hotspot availability often correlates with provider coverage, so some areas may have better service than others.
Both Verizon and Xfinity have plans that start at $40/month with 100 Mbps download speeds. HughesNet offers 25 Mbps for $60 month. New customers are often eligible for bonus offers.
Once a staple of the home, landlines are becoming as scarce as pay phones as most people decide to rely on their cell phones as their main mode of communication. You may wonder if you even need a landline in your new home in Baltimore.
Nearly the entire city has strong cell coverage, but you may be interested in setting up a landline if you work from home. Landlines often offer better call quality and tend to be more reliable (no more dropped calls right in the middle of a critical conversation!), so they are good to have for meetings and other important calls.
Most providers also offer VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) service as part of bundle packages with internet service. VoIP calling plans often including unlimited minutes within the U.S. and low international rates.
If you are moving into an apartment, check if your new place is pre-wired for internet with a predetermined provider. While this may be appealing on the surface, it could be limiting if the service doesn’t meet your requirements for work and play. Check your lease to determine if you can set up your own internet provider. Also, take note of whether your internet is part of your rent – you might be hesitant to pay twice for internet access.
Your moving checklist may be long (and growing…) and finding services for your new home can feel like another tough task. Fortunately, providers in Baltimore offer a variety of options for internet, cable and home phone service. Check out the best options for internet providers in Baltimore that are available in your new neighborhood.
Want to avoid the hassle and wasted time spent individually going online or calling each internet provider available in your area? Use the free FindYourInternet shop-and-compare tool to easily search available offers at your home address.