Internet access in Germany
First of all, it’s very important to know how the German market of internet service providers “works“. The quality of infrastructure is pretty good here, even though it could be better compared to other European countries. However, 82 % of the private households have got access to DSL broadband internet and politicians are aiming for 100 % in 2018.
There are basically four different types of access technologies most commonly used: DSL, Cable, FTTH and LTE. And therefore, there’s a variety of different providers you can choose from. The differences are mostly in technical quality and customer service. But how can you decide, which provider is the best for you?
Obviously, it’s very important, that the chosen provider has got an English offer or at least an English website and an English speaking support team. That makes it a lot easier for you.
You should take a careful look at the details of the plans offered. Most offers have a 24 months contract period. You can cancel our plans on a monthly basis, making you much more flexible. There are also some providers with data caps. This is very common for LTE offers, but there are also some providers, that limit your download speeds after reaching a certain amount of traffic. With easybell, you can be sure to have an unlimited flat rate for data.
What else do you need to know about “the German way“ of getting internet access? We’ve listed some of the most important answers to common questions you may ask when you’re in Germany and looking for an internet provider:
In Germany, there are the following possibilities for an internet connection: DSL, a cable connection, LTE or FTTH. We’d like to explain the differences in the following.
With Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) you can send and receive digital data over copper telephone lines. There are ADSL (Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line) and VDLS (Very-high-bit-rate Digital Subscriber Line). The most commonly installed DSL is still ADSL though the availability of VDSL is rapidly increasing. Different plans are offered by lots of providers, according to the speed depending on the kilobyte or megabyte per second (download). For checking emails, chatting or streaming music, ADSL with 16.000 Kbps are enough. You can get the fastest internet by using VDSL with up to 100.000 Kbps. Just check the availability at your address here. The German telephone infrastructure is owned by the Deutsche Telekom AG, that used to be part of state-owned monopoly Deutsche Bundespost. To liberate the market the DT was forced to open access to its infrastructure. That’s why you can choose between a bunch of different providers.
To go online via TV cable is possible as well. In theory, you can reach higher download rates. But there are also some disadvantages coming up: TV cable lines are a shared medium. In most cases, there is one cable leaving you building. This causes a decrease in bandwidth in peak times.
The cable network belongs to different companies depending on your address. Vodafone owns the greatest chunk of the cable network in Germany. Cable is much less stately regulated until now. So you can only decide for the plans of the one provider, that owns the network in your area. If you’ve got trouble with this provider you have no alternatives.
With LTE (Long Term Evolution), you get the internet signal via mobile communications. The advantage: If you are living in very rural areas and connection is too slow via DSL, you may receive a better one via LTE. But like cable, LTE is a shared medium and there is a noticeable decrease in bandwidth in peak hours. But the biggest downside is, that nearly every LTE plan has a data cap. After reaching that limit you have to book additional traffic or live with a very slow connection.
97 % of the German households use a broadband connection, 82% of them have got a DSL access. So because of the digital infrastructure and the choice of different providers, DSL is the best way to go online.
Here are the advantages of DSL:
- There is a better availability of DSL than cable or LTE in Germany.
- You don’t share your connection, so probably will have a more constant speed.
- There are, despite some exceptions, no data caps Ø easybell offers you cheap and fair DSL plans without a contract period.
The type of internet connection depends on your needs. If you want to have a very fast connection, you need a high bandwidth. And it’s also important to know, how long you want to use your contract. Most of the providers offer a 2-years-contract. With easybell, there’s no contract period for internet plans. You get a 14-day notice period and you are able to cancel your contract on a monthly basis.
There are seven steps to make until you‘ll have got full internet access.
- Find an English speaking provider – that makes it much easier for you.
- Decide on the plan that fits you the most. Please notice to order a device like a router if you need one.
- Check the bandwidth availability for your address.
- If you’ve found the perfect available plan, enter your personal information.
- You will receive a contract confirmation, follow the next steps.
- Receive your ordered device.
- After at least 14 days, your provider will activate your connection. Maybe it’s necessary that a technician of Deutsche Telekom comes to yours to enable the connection.
If your connection has been activated, you can just start to use the internet.
Deutsche Telekom AG is the biggest telecommunication company in Europe. Deutsche Telekom was formed in 1996 as the former state-owned monopoly Deutsche Bundespost was privatized. Nowadays, Deutsche Telekom still owns most of the network and is responsible for keeping them up to date. So almost every DSL-provider needs to send a technician of Deutsche Telekom to set up the connection.
In case of activating a new DSL line, a technician of Deutsche Telekom needs to come to your place, because the so-called “last mile” of your phone line belongs to Deutsche Telekom. You can possibly avoid the visit of the technician by entering the name and former phone number of the former owner of the line during the ordering process. Maybe you can ask your landlord or landlady if he or she knows details.
The technician will connect your phone line to a port of DSLAM (DSL-distribution station), which is close to your place. So he or she needs to come into your house to cover the line. If necessary, he or she needs to check the cabling of the main distributor of your house and in your telephone socket. If there’s no telephone socket, the technician will insert one (if there’s a phone line in your flat).
If you decide for a plan by easybell, we will inform you about the date of activation and whether a technician is necessary or not.
You can keep on comparing different providers or just quick-check the following advantages of an easybell plan:
- Internet and phone from the award-winning German ISP
- Transparent plans
- Bandwidth guarantee
- Cancel anytime
- No data caps, real flat rates
- Free choice of optional router
- English homepage so you get all the details
- English support via firstname.lastname@example.org For more detailed information about our advantages, just click here.