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If you live in a rural area and are currently connecting to the internet using a dial-up connection that is slow to load webpages and makes streaming video or downloading a chore, it is worth seeing if the Government-backed scheme to make super-fast broadband services available to 90 percent of the UK's population has reached your area.

To find out what broadband services are available to residents of your local area, visit a price comparison site and enter your postcode into the search box provided. If you live in an area where broadband services are not currently available, your options will either be limited to dial-up, mobile internet such as Orange broadband or satellite broadband.

While satellite and mobile broadband services do not offer connection speeds that are anywhere near as fast as fixed-line broadband, they do provide a faster speed than a dial-up internet connection and offer a great opportunity to improve your ability to use web-based services.

If mobile broadband sounds appealing, you will need to check the strength of the 3G signal in your area. 3G is the name of the signal spectrum that mobile broadband services operate on. If you own a smartphone and can access web services at home, the 3G signal should be stronger enough to support a home network run using mobile signal. If you do not own a smartphone, simply visit a mobile comparison site and click the link for 'mobile coverage maps'. You should be able to check how strong each mobile network's 3G signal in your area is by entering your home postcode. If it is listed as weak or poor, then you should consider satellite broadband.

Satellite broadband is available anywhere with a view of the sky. A one-off payment for the purchase and installation of a satellite dish is required, with 'line' rental costs payable each month, just like any other broadband service. Once connected, customers can receive a connection speed of between 1Mbps (megabits per second) and 10Mbps. With the national average broadband speed currently 7.6Mbps, the speed a satellite connection offers is not far off.

Until fixed-line broadband, provided through copper phone line or fibre optic cable, is installed in your area, mobile or satellite broadband could be the best alternative for those looking to get connected to faster speeds. With the government also funding schemes to improve the mobile signal strength in rural areas, if mobile broadband is not currently a viable option, that could change in the coming weeks and months. Check your local news and visit broadband price comparison sites regularly to see if new packages and deals from fixed-line or mobile providers become available. With the government aiming to have super-fast broadband accessible all over the country by 2015, it is a matter of time before rural customers can make the most of super-fast speeds.

If you are looking to compare broadband services, visit Broadband Choices. With impartial guides and advice on everything from mobile broadband to broadband & phone packages , finding a suitable deal has never been easier.


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