How Can I Make AOL My Internet Provider?

by Alexander Eliot

AOL offers multiple dial-up Internet packages that incorporate various features such as the AOL email system and instant messenger. These features can also be used on any broadband Internet connection when you link your AOL account. Some of these features are free of charge. However, if you want an AOL dial-up connection and/or AOL customer support, you must sign up for one of AOL's premium packages.

Connecting an AOL Account

Visit the official AOL website at aol.com. From there, you can browse the various AOL features, such as the AOL messenger and radio. To access these features, you must sign up for a free AOL account. To do so, click the "Sign up for a new account" link at the top of the Web page, and then provide all of the necessary information. This will allow you to access all of the free AOL services and features with your current Internet provider.

AOL Dial-Up Internet

Aside from special features and services, AOL also offers a dial-up Internet connection service. To view the various Internet packages, visit aol.com and click the "Downloads" option under the "Services" section on the left side of the screen. Click the "Become an AOL Member" tab at the top of the screen to view AOL's subscription plans. Once you decide which plan is right for you, click the plan option and provide your personal and payment information. AOL will then ship you the necessary hardware for a dial-up connection. Each of the AOL Internet packages offers the same connection speed. The difference is that the more expensive packages also include technical support and/or insurance coverage.

Broadband Internet

A broadband Internet connection uses a data signal with a larger wavelength to transfer information at a faster rate. This gives you much faster download and upload speeds. AOL doesn't offer a broadband service of its own. However, it offers various packages to incorporate with a broadband connection from a different provider. To see a full list of the AOL features you can take advantage of with a broadband connection, visit the official AOL broadband page at the address broadband.aol.com and click "FAQs."

Connection Speeds

The AOL dial-up connection speed is 56 kilobytes per second. This is the fastest rate at which you can transfer data when connected to the Internet with an AOL connection. In contrast, most broadband connection speeds are 512Kbps at the slowest, and high-speed options are available up to and beyond 100 megabytes per second. The substantially faster speed of broadband Internet is the reason that most users opt for a broadband connection.

About the Author

Alexander Eliot has been a professional writer since 2006. He holds a B.A. in English literature from the University of Cincinnati. His academic background allows him to write articles in all fields of education, as well as science and philosophy. Eliot once worked for a performance auto center, an experience he draws from to write informative articles in automotive theory, maintenance and customization.

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