Is there really no other option for affordable, reliable internet in New York City?


#1

This question is probably relevant to everyone in the United States- but here in NYC, we are losing Clear Wireless for home internet connections (not a great option, but as good a deal as I could find, at least) very soon, so I need to find a replacement. And so far, the only non-shitty corporate conglomerate option is RCN. In this day and age, is there really no affordable, accessible, working internet connection for your average human?

Pilot Fiber offers high-speed internet to businesses, and has a waiting list for residential use, but that’s all speculative at the moment:
https://pilotfiber.com/residential

…and that’s about all I can find. Is there really no “indie rock band” of internet? No “mom and pop” shop? Nothing that’s cheap and simple and no frills but gets the job done and doesn’t gouge you internet?


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#2

Depends on your need for speed and usage, but have you considered going wireless? There are a few home-wireless solutions, I think, but I use Karma because it’s portable and the data doesn’t expire (they also frequently run deals for half-price data which works out to $5/gb when bought in bulk).


#3

No, I guess I don’t know much about that- I mean, Clear was wireless- you’d buy their little modem / router device and that was that. But I didn’t see anything come up when I searched, so it didn’t dawn on me. I’ll look into Karma, thanks!


#4

FreedomPop offers a home router that is fed by 4G data. I’m not sure what the data charges are, but at least they don’t seem to have a monthly contract price. You can get 4G home routers from the major telcos but they are generally charged monthly with data caps, expensive overages, etc. Karma (and a few other similar mobile hotspot devices) are topped up whenever you need to, and at least with Karma, the data never expires. The downside is that it’s a portable modem/router that can’t be used with ethernet based devices. Good for relatively light data usage, not so much for people who do a lot of surfing/streaming from home.

If you’re looking for higher speeds or cheaper data than what you can get from something like Karma, NYC is pretty tough; the city is carved up between TWC, Cablevision and Verizon for actual cable so there’s no competition, and getting fibre is tough. I’m not sure about DSL.


#5

We have exactly the same problem in San Diego. Two providers, who divide the city between themselves along an east-west freeway. Plus AT&T, whose QoS sucks and whose customer service still thinks it’s 1915, not 2015.

I’m in Belgium right now, and both my hotel and the local pubs have better connections (by an order of magnitude, at least) than the pricy business internet connection I have at home.


#6

Not an answer to the question as such, but I know where I live Comcast has a near monopoly because the alternatives just don’t get the job done.

Here’s an article from 15 years ago:

I don’t think we are living in that world any more.


#7

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