Broadband in the Boonies

Faced with the ridiculous cost of living in urban tech hubs like San Francisco, Seattle and New York, it’s no surprise that web workers would take advantage of their mobility and move where they’ll get a better value for their dollar. But as they fan across the country into exurban and even rural locales, the further you get from a major metro means the fewer data infrastructure options you’ll find.

Daniel Pentecost pointed this out to us in his recent guide about how to find providers, evaluate your options and account for costs in your budget. For instance, he notes that T1 access is often available even where DSL and cable isn’t, and the price can be mitigated by sharing the connection and costs with your neighbors. And though available almost anywhere, satellite service isn’t recommended unless it’s your only option.

Hopefully WiMax should develop into another last-mile solution for outlying communities, especially where the distance from a switch makes DSL impractical. Connectivity is but one of many tradeoffs when fleeing to the hinterlands, though, but the situation is slowly improving, making the country life look better and better.


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