A community of competing businesses which provide "on-ramps to the Internet." THe largest of the companies connect directly to the Internet backbone, or provide their own national or international backbones. Examples of true Internet Providers: Netcom, UUNet, and SprintNet. Examples of partial Internet providers: Compuserve, Prodigy, and America On-Line.
a company which provides a connection to the internet, usually through your phone line, at an average cost of $10-$20 per month (kind of like calling to sign up for long distance phone service, there may be several companies in your area offering different service packages at different prices for different needs and you can't call long distance from your phone without one)
An IP provides users access to the Internet and email via telephone connections, cable, high-speed wires or satellites. Some of the larger IPs are AOL, EarthLink and ATT. There are thousands of local, national and world Internet Providers. Some IPs provide only local access via a local telephone number or TV cable while others provide local phone numbers for towns and cities around the world.
A company from whom users purchase Internet connectivity. This could either be a dedicated connection (for example, a telephone connection that stays open twenty-four hours a day) or a dial-up connection. Usually users run software such as PPP or SLIP to allow Internet connectivity across the line.