With the competition between cable and phone companies in the broadband Internet market heating up, deals can be had for faster service. If you already have broadband, the question then becomes, how fast is what you have now? Would an upgrade to a faster service or a switch in providers make a big enough difference?  Is your current provider misrepresenting the actual speeds you are getting?  The answer can be found in free broadband connection speed timers, like the one that can be found here. This one gives a graphic representation of the test and its results for both the download and upload speed.  Although the former number is often the one hyped, the latter can become important if you do things like online backups of your data or host your own server (web, e-mail, files) on the Internet.  If you have a product like Network Magic Pro, an Internet connection timer may already be built in.  Give it a try; you might be surprised by what you find.

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