There is a real need for speed on the information superhighway just as there is on the interstate. For decades, Southwest Cyberport has been filling that craving for our members in the Albuquerque metro area, Santa Fe and Los Alamos by partnering with various telecommunications companies. The one we’ve had the longest and most successful relationship has been with CenturyLink, the ultimate successor in these parts to Ma Bell.

That relationship is not ending, but it is changing. CenturyLink has finally put into effect a new array of high speed broadband connections across the nation that they had announced months ago. As a result, they are discontinuing their old methods and pricing structure.

Therefore, SWCP’s CenturyLink legacy DSL circuits ordered before 2010 will be ending soon. Customers still using this will have to switch to SWCP’s LightSpeed DSL, SWCP DIRECT wireless internet access, or find another provider.

Since our LightSpeed service relies on those basic CenturyLink connections, we have a new expanded range of LightSpeed tiers of speeds and prices replacing the old. These new speeds not only offer a larger variety of connections, but if chosen carefully, they may well save customers’ money. Plus, all of them will be faster than the older forms of DSL. See our LightSpeed pages for prices for home and business.

Here are some details:

  • Prices for new circuits are the same for both new customers and established members. While our Legacy DSL users have been grandfathered in, they are no longer allowed to make any changes to their old circuits, such as a speed upgrade. They will have to get a new installation just like newcomers. Those who already have LightSpeed will be unaffected unless they request a speed change.
  • All speed changes will require a new circuit.
  • Installation is done entirely by CenturyLink: $149 for homes and $174 for businesses. However, we are offering a $99 installation for either service with a promotion lasting until May 2020.
  • New circuits must use new modems. In cases where a customer’s old modem will work fine on the new circuit, SWCP can buy back the new one provided that the customer has accepted the new modem. Then if the customer returns it to SWCP, we will credit that account with the full $115.
  • Modem rental option for $8/month remain.
  • There is no separate activation fee; it is now covered by the installation fees.

Streamers take note

While these changes may be personally inconvenient, they come at an opportune time for those wishing to upgrade their connections to stream video. High speeds are becoming ever more important with so many turning to streaming content as well as home appliances that connect to the internet. The overall speeds needed both up and down should be chosen wisely with an eye towards future requirements.

Speeds for downloading content from the internet are often quite different from those for uploading to the internet. A good rule of thumb is that the local internet connection should be fast enough to accommodate a web surfers both ways while downloading a movie from Netflix and uploading questions to Alexa. All these things add up, as do online backups, etc.

Video gobbles up bandwidth like nothing else does. For any downloading at all, Netflix recommends 1.5 Mbps (Megabits per second) per stream; for DVD quality, 3 Mbps, and for HD 5 Mbps, but actual users report that 5 is best for DVD quality without delays especially with other users on the web at the same time. However, 4K or Ultra HD video, requires at least 25 Mbps minimum.

Connected security cameras such as Ring also consume bandwidth, but mainly for uploading, and not quite so much. Each camera needs at least 1 Mbps, 2.5 Mbps for higher resolution videos. Alexa and other voice assistants, however, require much less, just 256 Kbps, but like IP cameras, are usually always on, so it’s constantly adding up.

Despite these changes, Southwest Cyberport remains committed to delivering the fast, reliable internet connections to our customers at the speed you need. We are sorry for any inconvenience the new arrangements cause, but we are confident that LightSpeed’s fiber and DSL connections will make for speedier and more secure links for everyone. Call our Help Desk at 505-232-7992, email at or visit Prequalification for LightSpeed or Wireless to see what speeds are available without any obligation.