(NEXSTAR) – Before you sign a contract and set up your wifi in South Dakota, you probably want to know what your options are. A map maintained by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) lets you examine which internet provider offers the fastest speed in your area.
To start, you’ll want to type in your address on the FCC’s website. Then, a list of provider options pops up, plus the types of technology they have (like copper or fiber, for example), as well as their maximum advertised upload and download speeds for that address.
If you’re lucky enough to have multiple options, that last part is where you’ll want to pay extra attention, as internet speeds can vary greatly between providers at the same address. You need a download speed of around 10 Mbps to download files, between 5 and 8 Mbps to stream HD video, and 25 Mbps to stream Ultra HD 4K video, the FCC says.
The numbers listed are for one person doing one activity. So if you have a multi-person household, or are doing multiple internet-based activities at once, you’re going to have higher broadband needs.
Let’s take a look at the Pettigrew Home and Museum in Sioux Falls, for example.
There are two other providers listed for the Pettigrew Home and Museum: T-Mobile, a licensed fixed wireless with 100 Mbps download speeds and 50 Mbps upload speeds, and Viasat, Inc., a GSO satellite with a download speed of 30 Mbps and upload speed of 3 Mbps.
Despite all the options, there is one clear winner: Midcontinent Communications, better known as Midco, which advertises maximum download speeds of 1,000 Mbps, and top upload speeds of 50 Mbps.
You can view the best options for your home or business by clicking on the map below:
The FCC also maintains data on which cell providers have the best 4G and 5G coverage in your area. We recently compared the three biggest companies, Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile. Check it out here.