Internet speed wasn’t an issue a decade ago. Users were on level field since everyone had slow internet. Back then, not too many people went online anyway and computer hardware was limited so speed didn’t really matter. Fast forward to today, more people are using the internet for entertainment, information, and communication. Businesses are going online for advertising, marketing, and brand awareness. Computer makers are stepping it up by releasing fast-performing PCs and laptops. Moreover, internet use has shifted from PC to mobile with the advent of internet-ready phones.
The demands for fast and reliable internet soared over the past decade. In this span of time, technological advancements allowed internet companies to keep up with consumer needs and provide different options. Listed below are seven common internet options used in homes and business environments.
- Analog or dial-up access. The cheapest connection available, dial-up also happens to be the slowest. It can only support a maximum of 56kbps in download speed. Use is limited to PC and laptop owners since it requires you to hook up with a modem. The computer dials a phone number provided by an internet service provider (ISP) to make a connection. When a connection is made, analog data is sent over a public phone network and converted to digital data. Since it makes use of telephone lines, expect an intermittent and unreliable connection.
- Satellite. Satellite connectivity is ten times faster than analog but not as fast as cable internet. It offers an average download speed of 500 kbps. Sadly, bad weather can interrupt with the speed and reliability of satellite internet. So if you live in a storm-frequented area you should consider other internet options.
- Cable. With this type of connection, data is transmitted over cable modem. Its speed ranges from 512kbps to 20Mbps. Availability of cable internet is limited to areas where cable TV is offered. Thus it’s a rare find in rural areas.
- Digital subscriber line (DSL). DSL connections are transmitted over telephone lines only this time, the DSL modem is responsible for converting signals to digital data. Due to its fast speeds, it allows multiple internet users to connect to a single modem. DSL speeds range from 128kbps to 8Mbps.
- Wireless internet. Just as its name suggests it doesn’t require telephone or cable wires to make a connection. Instead, it relies on radio frequencies which transmitted by a tower or a wireless router connected to dial-up, satellite, cable, or DSL. When using a router, internet speed largely depends on the primary internet connection. As for wireless towers, bad weather can cause a slow and intermittent connection.
- T-1 line. T-1 internet is a private internet connection which businesses can lease from internet companies. Internet speed peaks at 1.54Mbps for a single T-1 connection. T-1 lines may be combined to provide faster internet.
- T-3 line. Like T-1 internet, you would have to lease it off from an ISP. This private connection can deliver 43 to 45Mbps.
The variety of internet connections gives home owners and businesses the opportunity to choose based on their needs. Unfortunately, only some of them are available in select areas. Numerous online resources provide information about internet options and companies in a region. They should help you decide which is best for your home or business.
About Author: Kenneth Javellana is a tech buff who writes gadget reviews, news, and informative articles on technology. He works at BroadbandExpert.com, a consultation company that helps businesses and home owners find internet providers that suit their needs.