Demystifying Broadband

Demystifying Broadband

Broadband -most of us use it, but do we understand it? Learning more about the world of Broadband and understanding the basic concepts can help you to make better decisions-  in this article, we will be demystifying Broadband and Internet speeds. 

Since the Internet gained its widespread attention in the 1990s, it has grown to be one of the most significant technological developments of all time. Back then, we had to dial a connection via our telephones, which came with a painfully slow speed and a considerable inconvenience. Since the early 2000s, when Broadband made its appearance, it has become possible for the signal in one line to be divided between telephone and Internet, enabling users to be online and make phone calls simultaneously. 

It will come as no surprise that Broadband is here to stay, and we all continue to rely on it. Sending and receiving emails, downloading data, streaming, and browsing – none of these activities would be possible without a Broadband Internet connection. Let’s demistify!

What Is Broadband?

Broadband stands for ‘broad bandwidth’ and is considered the fastest type of Internet connection accessible today and is commonly defined as ‘always-on’ because Broadband Internet technology is continually connected and does not obstruct telephone lines. 

Broadband Internet sends information through networks via multiple data channels. It enables data to be carried at high speed to your computers, laptops, tablets, smartphones, smart TVs, or any other web-enabled devices. 

What Are Different Types Of Broadband 

Fiber optic  

Fiber Broadband is the fastest means of delivering high-speed Internet to homes and businesses and is considered a next-generation technology. Fiber Broadband is transmitted via clusters of fiber optic cables and provides vaster bandwidth, faster internet connection, and more reliable signals than other types of Broadband. Because fiber optics use light as opposed to electricity to carry data, the frequencies that are applied are much higher, and the information capacity is much more comprehensive. The fiber optic cable itself is constructed from glass or plastic, which is not responsive to an electromagnetic intervention, like typical metal cables. This enables information to flow over great distances without corrupting.

Satellite 

Satellite Internet is a process of delivering the Internet via a satellite connection. This is performed by transmitting data from the provider up to satellites in orbit, which then transmit data to subscribers with satellite dishes at their locations. A physical antenna, which is commonly installed on the roof of a building, receives a signal from a larger satellite located in geostationary orbit. The satellites are continuously in the same position and are laid out strategically so that the entire area of land is covered. This means that unlike fiber or cable, when you chose satellite internet, it does not matter where you are located. So for those located in rural areas, satellite internet might be the most viable option.

DSL 

DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) is one of the earliest forms of high-speed Internet services.  It uses existing traditional copper telephone wiring. Thanks to technological developments, this wiring that was installed to handle voice telephone calls can now deliver high-speed digital data. DSL does not interfere with the voice data, meaning that you can use the phone and internet at the same time. The DSL system divides the telephone signals into three bands of frequencies, where the lowest line concedes for telephone calls, while the other two lines allow for uploading and downloading online activity.

Cable

Cable internet works similar to DSL in that both utilize copper cables to transmit data as an electrical signal; whereas fiber cables use optical signals. While DSL uses traditional copper telephone wires, cable Broadband uses the corresponding coaxial copper cables that transmit sound and video to cable TV subscribers.

How Are Broadband Speeds Measured 

Broadband is delivered through different methods and technologies, and the type of technology defines the range of speeds transmitted to your device. Other factors also determine the speed of a connection, and all affect how quickly you can access information, download or upload files, or stream live data. 

The speed of your connection provides whether it is possible to operate particular applications effectively, and you should, therefore, understand how fast a connection is required to perform a specific task or run a specific program.

The speed that’s being measured when we discuss Broadband is referring to the speed of data being transferred. For example, when you click on a link or a website, it is the speed of data delivery that defines how fast you see a response on your device. If your connection is slow, you will inevitably experience delays when downloading files or attempting a video conference. 

Broadband speed is commonly ranked in Megabits per second (Mbps). A Megabit is 1/8 as big as a Megabyte, indicating that to download a 1MB file in 1 second, you will require a speed of 8 Mbps.

High-speed Internet connection is defined by download speeds of at least 768 Kbps and upload speeds of at least 200 Kbps. The distinction between download and upload speeds can be described in the following way: download speed applies to the rate that data is carried from the Internet to your device, while upload speed is the speed transferring data from device to the Internet.

For the general individual internet use, download speed should be much faster than upload speed as they would likely be downloading more information, such as music, videos, or movies.  On the flip side, upload speeds are crucial in business settings as sharing and distributing larger files need more upload speed. 

Your Most Likely Choices

Before committing to any specific connection, be sure that it will match the needs of your family, if you are choosing a Broadband for home use;  or your customers and your employees if you are selecting a Broadband for commercial use. In the business arena, most customers assess the quality of a brand based on the quality of their online experience. And most employees feel the state of internet connectivity directly links to their productivity.

Be sure to weigh out your options and find the right balance between speed and affordability when making your choice. 

In the meantime, if you are interested in improving your networks, why not contact us for a chat (970) 663-1200.