People Using Mobile Data Instead Of Internet Service Providers. The ongoing pandemic has impacted daily life in the United States in several ways, some predictable and others are surprising.
On the predictable side, when tens of thousands of employees went to work from home, broadband internet connectivity saw a huge surge in use. Nearly 80 percent of broadband users upgraded their service to get better speeds.
Unfortunately, the increased demand put a tremendous strain on the broadband providers, many of whom are still, to this day, struggling to respond. As a result, there has been a growing migration away from broadband service, as more than 12 million former broadband customers have canceled their service. Instead, they’re opting to turn their cellphones into WiFi hotspots and make use of their cellular data plan.
While that is an effective solution for some, there are a few potential pitfalls to be mindful of. While high-speed connectivity is undoubtedly possible for starters, most cell plans have much tighter data limits than broadband providers do. If you stream video regularly, you’re likely to run into those caps very quickly if you adopt this strategy.
Cellular Data Plans are More Expensive than Broadband Plans
Closely related to this issue is that while it is possible to upgrade your cellular data plan, it’s usually much more expensive than upgrading your broadband plan.
Additionally, the issue may not be with your provider or not solely with your provider. If you haven’t yet upgraded your home network to one of the popular mesh network systems, then doing so could see an overall boost in speed, depending on your home network’s particulars and how you use it.
According to Parks Associates research, more than half of all broadband customers are currently reporting problems of one sort or another with their service. The most common is the monthly cost, but other top contenders include slow service speeds, unreliability, poor customer service, and other technical and billing-related issues.
On the other hand, with a growing number of people using mobile data and leaving the broadband ecosystem, this may wind up being a self-correcting problem.
If you decide to tough it out, you may find that performance improves over time. Either way, it is an exciting and unexpected development that’s worth watching.