I travel from home to home, setting up Macs, iPads, iPhones, AppleTV’s, and iPod Touches. All of this new, recent technology, and it’s all held way, WAY back by old, OLD technology:
The cable modem.
I can’t BELIEVE that folks are tolerating old modems that look like this one, as just one example:
It’s a terrible thing. Why? Because it’s like trying to empty a swimming-pool using a drinking-straw. No decent bandwidth. The old tech is locked-in, inflexible and S-L-O-W.
Swapping out the old one for a new one (instructions below) will increase your Internet speed by around ten times. You’ve been PAYING for Internet speed that you haven’t been GETTING. You’re being robbed.
Some folks are still actually RENTING the hardware, and have been, for over a decade. California State Law says that you have the right own to own your own cable modem, so stop by Costco, and pick up whatever cable modem they sell. I’m fond of the Motorola Surfboard models which tend to be what Costco has in stock.
New, up-to-date cable modems of all brands are all the same nowadays, if they are using what is called “DOCSIS 3.0” technology (it will say so, boldly, on the box – It’s a big selling-point). This means that when the folks at the cable company upgrade THEIR hardware, then they can upgrade the hardware’s programming over the cable on YOUR end to keep up.
-=-=-=-=- How To Upgrade -=-=-=-=-
– Buy a new, “DOCSIS 3.0” capable modem (they are about eighty bucks)
– BEFORE installing it, go to
and click “Begin Test”, NOT “Start Now”, which is a rip-off.
Write down your Download speed, for later reference.
– Un-package the cable modem completely
– Call your cable company: either Cox at (619) 262-1122, or Time-Warner at (858) 695-3220, and tell them that you have a new cable modem, and wish to set it up. They will tell you to swap the two cable modems, read the numbers off of the box, and within five minutes, you’re up and running.
The, run speedtest again, and see what your speed increase has been. I think that you will be very pleased.
Notice that I do NOT recommend a wireless cable modem. We are Mac users, so we use Apple wireless routers, because we like luxury (such as wirelessly backing up our Macs, having the entire property be one, unified network within mere seconds, accessing your files and home Mac screen from anywhere on earth, and printer-sharing). Non-Apple-brand wireless boxes are crap for Mac users, and I wouldn’t give you five bucks for one.