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The best internet service – how and where to get it

To get reliable internet service in Israel is one of the basic requirements of living a modern life. If you want to function effectively in the 21st-century economy - you need a reliable, high speed, high capacity internet service. Ideally, you also need an internet service that won’t make a substantial monthly hole in your bank account!

Finding the best internet service in Israel is a challenge, particularly for Olim Hadashim (new immigrants to Israel). There’s been a lot of past confusion about the idiosyncratic Israeli system of separate suppliers (sapak) and infrastructure (tashtit) as well as pricing deals that contain hidden costs or switch to a higher charge after the ‘initial offer’ expires. 

A language barrier can be a nightmare especially for people that are still adjusting to the Israeli way of doing things. Too many Olim end up paying over the odds for inferior internet service in Israel. Apart from pricing, one of the main issues is internet speed. Many people don’t understand the basics, or only have a vague idea about what really constitutes high-speed internet. We’ll explain how it all works - and why high-speed internet is essential - in this blog post. 

How do you measure internet speed?

Internet speed a basic definition

Internet speed is the data transfer rate through your internet connection. Anything that you do on the internet requires a transfer of data between devices, via cables (or via WiFi) - be a video that you’re watching on YouTube, a web page that you just clicked to open, or a video conference on Zoom

You measure the data in bits and data transfer in bits per second (bps). It’s similar to measuring speed on the roads - mph or kph. You can think of your internet cable as a dual carriageway that allows both downloading and uploading. Your connection will give you a download speed and an upload speed - both in bps. Download speeds (at least for domestic internet users) are usually much higher than upload speeds. This is because the average domestic user rarely needs to upload large amounts of data in a short time.

You measure bits and bps in multiples of thousands of units for convenience:

Unit of Measurement Size in BitsRelevance to Current Services
Kbps1,000 x 1 bitThe slow speed that is already obsolete
Mbps1,000 x 1KbpsTypically used to measure broadband 
Gbps1,000 x 1MbpsUltra-fast speed beyond domestic needs

Anybody who used the old-fashioned dial-up connections will be familiar with speeds measured in Kbps. This is the kind of speed you experienced when individual web pages took forever to download onto your screen. Mbps will be familiar to most people who currently have a standard broadband connection. Gbps is not yet relevant to ordinary internet users.

How do you know it's a good internet speed?

The definition of a good internet speed depends entirely on what you are using the internet for. A single person with a laptop and a cellphone, who connects to the internet might be adequately served by a 25 Mbps download speed. 25Mbps meets the most basic requirements for video conferencing, downloading films and music, and gaming. Higher speeds are much more reliable and will offer greater flexibility. 

Fiber optic cables are definitely the way forward for anybody who wants consistently high internet speeds. They use light to transfer data at a much higher rate than copper cables and are very unlikely to experience significant disruption during peak hours.

We’re currently thinking in terms of Mbps when we compare current broadband services, but the planned 5 and 6 G internet will be measured in Gbps. They will transform internet speeds and capacity beyond our current comprehension. The world is on the cusp of an internet revolution that is expected to drive all kinds of scientific and technical innovations. 

How do you know it's a bad internet speed?

Good and bad internet speed depends entirely on user requirements. As a rule of thumb, if you want to watch a video clip online and it buffers - you have a bad internet speed. Equally, if you can’t participate in a Zoom conference, or quickly transfer data, you also have a bad internet speed. If your current internet speed is less than 100 Mbps, you have second-rate internet service and should be considering an immediate change. Even if you’re not a big internet user, you can probably still find a new monthly plan that provides you with a much higher internet speed for less money. You never know when your personal internet requirements will increase. 

Why fast internet is important

The global COVID-19 pandemic transformed how we work and communicate. National lockdowns and purple badge restrictions on office capacity in Israel created a new work at home culture. Anybody without a fast and reliable internet connection was at an immediate and potentially severe disadvantage. 

The lockdowns raised fundamental questions about the future of the Israeli workplace. Many employees are now keen to work from home at least a few days a week. There are new expectations about work-life balance; the necessity of daily commutes and the viability of unpopular open space offices and we may also see shifts towards freelancing and multi-role jobs with remote working. 

Work aside, a high-speed internet plan in Israel is pretty much essential for a good quality of life and if you made aliyah and want to keep in close touch with your family and friends in the old country, video conferencing services are ideal, and if you’ve got kids, and their grandparents are in another country, a family Zoom meeting can be particularly rewarding. Birthday parties, special days, and Shabbat, and holiday gatherings are no longer just limited to physical attendees. 

Anybody who enjoys films, music, or books already understands the value of a reliable high-speed internet connection. Streaming and downloading are already replacing television as the preferred way of viewing films and drama. It’s providing viewers with access to content and freedom of choice that was unimaginable a generation ago. Sites like YouTube are also distributing content across the world - and making money for many channel owners. If you want to run a YouTube channel, you will absolutely need high upload speeds. 

How to find the right high-speed internet plan in Israel

There is no shortage of high-speed internet plans on offer in Israel. The challenge is to find a reliable provider that offers genuine value for money and top quality service standards. You need to be certain that you are receiving an optimal service that actually reflects your needs. You also need absolute transparency when it comes to terms and conditions, billing - as well as a straightforward explanation of what you’re actually getting. 

One of the first obstacles faced by Olim Hadashim is the language barrier. It is never a good start to deal with an unmotivated call center worker who only speaks basic English. They bounce you around the system or put you on hold for a very long time and it generally makes you feel mad and even if you're not getting the best value for your money, getting connected to the internet feels like an achievement!

How can TCS help you?

TCS is making life easier for thousands of Anglos across Israel by offering all its telecommunications services in English. That includes native English speakers staffing the call center and English language monthly billing. When you connect with TCS, you can expect to receive top-tier customer service with reps who are fast, efficient, courteous, and genuinely helpful.

TCS understands exactly how important a high-speed internet connection is - both for families and businesses. They’ll help you to get connected with high-speed fiber optic internet - either 200 or 500 MB - and talk to you about how you can rationalize all your communications needs by opting for a bundle of services that can include internet, cell phone, landline, and TV, with options for roaming and additional free foreign numbers which are the best in Israel.

They guarantee efficiency and reliability when it comes to providing you with high-speed fiber-optic service. You’ll also get simple and clear itemized billing every month so that you’ll know exactly how much you are paying - and exactly what you’re paying for. They also reward loyal customers with upgrades and special deals whenever new technology becomes viable or there is an opportunity to improve the terms of service.  

TCS customer service can take care of everything you need if you have an existing subscription with another company - or multiple companies. When you opt for TCS high-speed internet, you’ll also receive free installation and full support. 

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