When most people think about the internet, they think about all of the possibilities of being connected. From staying in touch with friends and family to working from home, there are endless opportunities available to those who have access to the internet. Many people live in rural areas that don’t have access to the internet. This can be due to several reasons, such as not having the funds to pay for it or not having the infrastructure in place. However, there are ways to get internet in rural areas. The following are some of the ways on how to get internet in rural areas:
31 Best Ways to Get Internet in Rural Areas
1. Satellite internet services
Satellite internet is one of the most popular and successful ways of getting high-speed internet access in areas where cable connections are not available. As technology has improved, satellite internet connections have also increased, meaning that they are now just about fast enough for most users’ needs. They’re also very cheap to install and maintain, so they are becoming more popular all the time.
Satellite internet services are also very flexible, so you can choose a package that best meets your needs.
2. 4G internet connections
4G technology is another popular way of getting access to the internet in rural areas, as it uses ground-based transmitters rather than satellites or cables. In most cases, this means that you’ll be able to get a 4G connection almost anywhere there is coverage from a mobile phone network – which means even some of the most remote parts of the country are now covered for this type of service. Unlike some other types of high-speed internet access, 4G deals tend to be quite cheap – but they are not as fast as cable and satellite services.
3. WiFi hotspots on trains and planes
You’ve probably already heard of this, but it may still be worth mentioning as more and more public places such as trains and planes are offering free WiFi hotspots if you want to use the internet on your phone or laptop while away from home, these can be an excellent way of getting online at no extra cost. Many of them will automatically log you onto the network and require no password, meaning that they’re really quick and easy to access.
4. Home broadband connections offered by mobile operators
Mobile broadband is just like regular broadband in many ways – except that it’s delivered via 3G or 4G networks instead of cables or telephone lines. Therefore, it is ideal you live in an area with good mobile phone coverage, although it is less suitable if you live in a very rural area. As with most broadband connection types, the speed is likely to be sufficient for your needs – but won’t be fast enough if you want to do high bandwidth activities, such as streaming TV or movies online.
5. Setting up your network
If you’re technically minded, then another option is to roll out your wireless network in your house, which means there are no longer any limits on where you can go online when at home. This solution may appeal to some people for this reason alone, but it does have many other benefits too. You will get a strong and stable wireless signal throughout every house room. You can set up password-protected safety networks for each family member, which means you know exactly what they are doing online. It’s also an excellent way of improving your internet speed if your broadband connection is slow.
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6. Smartphone tethering
Using the signal from your mobile phone provider to access the internet is another solution that has become very popular in recent years. This type of technology is normally known as ‘tethering .’ It lets you share the data on your plan with other devices over WiFi or Bluetooth – like a laptop computer or games console, for example.
7. Satellite broadband TV services
Satellite broadband TV offers some fairly impressive benefits compared to standard satellite television channels.
The main difference is that you can also watch many free-to-air channels, such as BBC iPlayer and 4oD, through these services – meaning that you never have to worry about missing out on your favorite shows or sports events again. Another benefit of these services is that they often come with a wireless router, which means that there is no need for any complicated wiring.
8. Community internet projects
In some cases, it may be possible to set up your community network in rural areas, where everyone in a small group agrees to contribute a portion of their bandwidth towards providing the entire group with unlimited access to the web via a wireless service. This type of arrangement can work very well for those who live in isolated rural areas, as it means that you don’t have to rely on the companies providing solutions.
9. Police and crime prevention networks
Although they are not as widespread as they once were, some police forces around the country provide free WiFi hotspots for those who live nearby. For example, officers in North Wales recently set up a community wireless network called ConwyWiFi, which covers a 10-mile radius around their station. This is also true of many other areas across the UK.
10. WiFi signal boosters
Suppose your internet connection or computer isn’t very reliable. In that case, one possible solution is to invest in an external WiFi signal booster, which can enhance the signal to the area of your home where you spend the most time.
11. Satellite mobile phone services
If your broadband connection is poor, you may also get better luck with a satellite mobile broadband package. These are very similar to standard mobile phone connections in that they will allow you to do things like sending emails, use Skype, and access social networks – but can be far more expensive than standard mobile phone packages, so it’s important that you only opt for this type of solution if all else has failed.
12. Taking out a pre-paid wireless plan
Although it isn’t the cheapest option on the market, taking out a pre-paid wireless broadband plan can work out cheaper than many other types of long-term contract deals.
13. Using a wireless router as a modem
In some cases, it may be possible to use the built-in wireless functionality on your PC to access the internet. This is often referred to as ‘wireless router mode’ and can be enabled or disabled with a simple setting in most computers, depending on which make and model you have.
14. Internet cafes
As long as there is at least one working broadband connection running in an Internet cafe, you will most likely find that most places allow people to use their laptops for free if they are customers. Many establishments run special evening rates for this type of usage, too – meaning that you only pay for what you need rather than buying another broadband connection at home.
15. Using online websites to download music and movies
Many people worldwide are now turning to free, peer-to-peer filesharing sites as an alternative method of downloading new music tracks – with many high-quality albums available for nothing within a matter of minutes. You can access commercial TV shows on dozens of these sites too, which means that you don’t have to pay monthly subscription rates anymore.
16. Using satellite navigation systems
If you are struggling to get any form of internet connection at home, it may be possible to use your sat nav device instead – thanks to features like ‘Live Services,’ which are becoming more popular. This type of service is an internet connection built into the device itself, allowing you to upload data via a 3G mobile phone signal.
17. Using free broadband trials
As everyone knows, some companies will provide you with a free broadband trial in return for taking out a contract – meaning that you can always give it a try before opting for any long-term solution or wireless plan. This means that if you don’t like what’s on offer, you haven’t wasted your money and can move onto another provider without penalty.
18. Using Twitter and Facebook efficiently
Although most people tend to use social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter to stay in touch with their friends these days, there can be a bonus in terms of being used to get online. For example, it’s possible to connect your smartphone up to a laptop and use their cellular signal to get online, while there are also wireless USB dongles that will allow you to do the same thing from anywhere.
19. Using a mobile phone with a WiFi connection
Many modern 3G smartphones also can create their wireless hotspot signal, providing you with a way to get online, which doesn’t require an existing 3G or 4G broadband contract. For example, it’s possible for you to ‘tether’ your laptop up to your phone in this way – meaning that you can share its internet connection to get online.
20. Getting a new SIM card from another network
Just because you’re with one company, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t other options out there. If you’re prepared to switch networks, then going for different deals could mean getting unlimited data and messages, so you won’t have to worry about spending too much money. This is worth looking at if you frequently pay bills every month – as it could be cheaper for you to change your sim card provider instead.
21. Renting a dongle
Suppose you’re away from home or don’t want to pay high line rental costs. In that case, getting a data-only SIM could be the solution you need, allowing you to get online quickly and easily without worrying about any other contract issues. Plus, this can provide an added benefit of working remotely wherever there’s mobile internet coverage too – which means that you are always connected no matter where in the world you are!
22. Using spectrum sharing
Some countries have now opted to use spectrum sharing services to get their citizens online, which means that the 3G or 4G signal can be boosted by working together with nearby mobile phone towers. This is already available in the UK if you want to take advantage of it, while countries like Germany are trialing this type of technology for wider release shortly.
23. Using a MiFi device
Many people now turn to using a wireless router-type device when they want access to the internet on the go – and these tiny gadgets allow multiple devices such as laptops, tablets, and smartphones to connect up at once. You can also get wireless routers that offer data plans, meaning that you don’t have to pay fees for internet access every month. This device is usually a lot cheaper than getting an extra sim card for your phone.
24. Using public WiFi hotspots
Getting online when you’re out and about, it’s becoming increasingly common to use public WiFi connections. This means that you can go online without paying any fees or signing up for any contracts either! This is especially handy if you need a quick check of your emails, as well as being able to call people using services like Skype instead of paying expensive roaming rates abroad via your mobile network company.
25. Accessing your emails via a mobile phone
It can be useful to know that you can access your emails on the go even if there isn’t free WiFi nearby, which is why so many people use their smartphones to get online – especially when they’re not at home. All it takes is for you to install an app like Gmail or Yahoo mail onto your device, and you’ll be able to log in without having to sign up for any contracts or pay any fees either!
26. Using public computers instead
Another way of getting online cheaply while out and about involves using internet cafes or public libraries to get online – both of which will provide you with connection speeds that are usually faster than what most people would expect from a broadband connection. They usually require that you sign up with a library card or pay a small fee, meaning that this can be an affordable way of getting online.
27. Opting for smaller connectivity tariffs
If you’re willing to switch your broadband package around, it could mean getting much cheaper deals overall – just by switching to which company provides your wireless home internet connection. Whether you want faster speeds or unlimited downloads, there are many different companies out there offering their deals – so it’s worth looking into if you’ve never switched before! Just make sure that the package includes all of the features and services you need first.
28. Using free WiFi hotspots
If you are using free internet in libraries, cafes, or other public areas, then be aware that it might not be as safe or secure as if you paid for these services. There’s always a chance that your computer could get infected with viruses or trojans when you’re out and about too, so it’s important to look into any security settings before doing anything online where you don’t know who has access to it the connection.
29. Buying an internet bundle instead
Finally, one of the most affordable ways of getting online at home involves signing up for an unlimited broadband deal – meaning that whatever time or whatever amount of data you use during the month won’t cost you anything extra either. This is yet another way of saving money if you’re after faster speeds or unlimited downloads, and most companies offer these deals nowadays – meaning that you shouldn’t have to sign up for anything too expensive if you know what you want first.
30. Using a wireless router to connect everything up
Wireless routers are designed mainly for use by individuals who want to get online using multiple devices, whether that’s because there are lots of people living in the house or just because you need more than one device connected at once. It’s possible to purchase routers that allow you to connect your laptop, smartphone, and tablet all at once without paying any extra fees – meaning that this is an affordable way of getting online.
31. Brick and mortar internet
Sometimes, if you’re struggling to get connected online, it could be worth thinking about looking into having an actual physical broadband connection installed in your own home. Although this may cost more than most people would expect upfront, it can mean paying a lot less overall – with some companies offering telephone, TV, and wireless internet all rolled into one! You can also ask them to quote on certain services like line rental costs during the initial installation.
Rural areas are typically underserved by the internet, making it difficult to do things like getting information or shopping online. The internet is now a necessity for many people. Without it, they are cut off from the world and their work. If you’re living in an area that doesn’t have access to broadband or wireless service, don’t despair; there are still plenty of ways to get online without buying expensive satellite services (which can be unreliable).