By Senior Tech from the April 2013 Edition
In the previous issue I wrote about Internet Telephony. This issue I will talk about Internet Service Provider (ISP) choices available in Manzanillo. An ISP is a company that will contract services for access to the Internet.
The Internet is a worldwide network of computers that allows access and lets you communicate with your friends and family through email or video chat, look up recipes, watch TV, search for information, do your banking along with a myriad of other tasks, all from the comfort of your home.
Each ISP has a different method to deliver the Internet and each offer packages to compliment their throughput. Throughput is measured in bits per second (bps) and a higher bps translates to faster service. (Mbps are a million bits per second). Think of water flowing from a garden hose versus that of fire hose, the bigger the pipe, the greater the throughput. Internet throughput is measured in two methods, upload speed and download speed, it is important to ensure the upload speed is also fast. Download speeds will be impacted if a large file is uploaded when an attempt to download (or view pages) at the same time. There are essentially three ISPs in Manzanillo; Telmex, Telecable, and cell phone companies like Telcel.
Telmex Infinitum offers four Internet packages with their phone service. The Internet is delivered through DSL (Digital Subscribers Line) and throughput decreases the farther you are from the Company’s wire station. Throughput is also negatively impacted by the condition of your telephone line. If you have Telmex service, you can get a wireless modem and filters from Telmex and connect. Otherwise they will install for a fee. Download speeds are posted as 3Mbps to 10Mbps. My experience on their 3Mbps package was (1.7Mbps download and .5Mbps upload). Based on www.speedtest.net.
Telecable also offers four bundles. Their download speeds are posted as 5Mbps to 15Mbps. I have contracted for the 8 Mbps package and my www.speedtest.net results are between 8-9 Mbps download and 1.7 – 2.5 Mbps upload. There is a 200 peso installation charge. The technician will install the cable and internet service (includes the cable modem).
Telcel offers their Internet service differently. Rather than speed packages, they sell the amount of bits consumed measured in Gigabytes (GB). Their throughput is comparable with 3 Mbps download and .5 Mbps upload. I am reluctant to show the 1 GB package as this is a small threshold. If all you do is send and receive email then the 1 GB package will suffice. If you view videos and visit multi-media sites, do not settle for less than the 5 or 10 GB packages. Video consumes a lot of data. A movie streamed over the internet can use over 1 GB of data. You will also require a USB Modem Stick (300 pesos) or Mobile Wireless Modem (1,000 – 1,500 pesos). The Mobile Wireless Modem will allow sharing access with other computers or devices.
Of the three ISPs, Telecable offers the best price/performance options. Telecable, however, is not available in all areas.
Telmex is more widely available, but expensive. Throughput varies depending on location and line quality.
Only consider the Telcel option if you are unable to contract service with Telmex or Telecable. Or, if you are travelling and need internet, once you hit the plan threshold, you will have to buy another package in order to have internet service.
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Señior Tech resides in Manzanillo during the winter, and Canada in the summer and fall.