Swiss Internet plans are often expensive. Here, moneyland.ch explains how to get the most bandwidth.
1. Make use of optical fiber connections
More than one million households in Switzerland have the option of using an optical fiber connection. The majority of these are in the largest Swiss cities, but households in a number of smaller cities as well as regions like upper Valais and the canton of Fribourg can also access optical fiber connections.
Optical fiber connections have the benefit of being able to permanently transfer data at maximum speed, without technological limitations. That does not mean that you can always connect to all applications at full speed. If data is delayed along any part of the connection across the “information highway”, performance will still be poor.
2. Avoid copper and coaxial connections
Copper phone lines and coaxial connections have been the established telecom standard for many decades. Copper cable networks were originally built to enable the use of telephones. Coaxial cables were originally laid to provide consumers with cable TV and radio. In the meantime, operators have also purposed existing cables to offer broadband connections. But both technologies are now somewhat dated and pose some disadvantages.
3. Make symmetrical connections your first choice
Symmetrical Internet connections let you upload data to the Internet at the same speed as you can download it. The benefit of symmetrical broadband plans is that upload speeds are noticeably faster than those of conventional connections. The higher upload speed makes a difference when, for example, you want to upload your videos to a video streaming portal or social media, or back up files to a cloud-based storage solution.
In the past, symmetrical Internet connections were primarily offered to business customers in exchange for significantly higher fees. In the meantime, many Swiss providers have begun to offer symmetrical broadband connections to the general public as well.
4. Use Internet-only plans if possible
Many telecom service providers now offer stand-alone Internet plans, which means you do not need a landline phone plan in order to connect to the Internet. If your primary need is for a fast Internet connection, getting a stand-alone plan is often a cheaper option. Swiss telecom service providers generally offer bundled packages, like those which include TV and landline plans, However, getting these bundles can in some cases be more expensive than getting stand-alone plans for each service.
5. Smaller telecom service providers are often cheaper
Offers from smaller service providers are often significantly cheaper than offers from big-name telecom companies. In many cities you can get a slow broadband connection for less than 30 francs per month. The cheapest broadband plan from Swisscom, on the other hand, costs 65 francs per month.
6. Avoid using supplementary services from broadband providers
Some broadband providers offer supplementary services like complimentary email addresses or cloud-based services when you use their broadband connection. However, using these email addresses or cloud services can make it difficult to switch to another broadband provider in the future. If you choose to switch to another provider at any point, you may not be able to access these services, or your access might be limited. Because of this, using services which are not connected to a broadband provider and which you can continue using if and when you switch Internet service providers is generally a better idea.
7. Opt for short contract terms
Make a point of getting plans with the shortest possible minimum terms. Quitting a plan before the minimum term has transpired can incur high penalty fees in some cases. The broadband plan comparison by moneyland.ch clearly lists minimum contract terms and notice periods.
8. Clearly define your needs
Many service providers offer very fast Internet connections. Modern optical fiber connections can transfer data at speeds of up to 10 Gbps. But there are few people who actually need a connection that fast.
Before you sign up for a broadband plan, always take the time to ask yourself what you expect to use the Internet for. If, for example, you live alone, do not browse the Internet much and primarily use your Internet connection to check your messages, a connection of 10 Mbps will generally be sufficient.
If your household includes a number of people – a family with children, for example – then getting a faster connection is generally recommended. This is especially true if your family members use multiple devices such as smartphones, tablets, computers and television sets to access the Internet at the same time. A faster connection may also be beneficial if you download large amounts of data.
9. Compare total costs
When choosing the right broadband plan, it is important to look at total costs. The monthly fee normally represents the primary cost, but on top of that you often pay one-time fees for the installment of the connection after signing up for the service. The moneyland.ch broadband plan comparison clearly lists all applicable costs
Internet and broadband comparison