Broadband Internet Frequently Asked Questions About Broadband Internet Service
Which broadband connection type is right for you?
Cable Internet is one of the most popular ways of obtaining a broadband connection. Cable broadband Internet allows you to have an always-on connection that delivers considerably faster speeds than dial-up without interfering with your ability to make and receive telephone calls.
Many users prefer Cable Internet to other broadband options, such as DSL, because it utilizes the same wiring already used to provide cable television in their homes. This typically makes installation faster. It also means that broadband users are working with their local cable provider, a company that they already trust.
Cable internet service providers are currently increase connection speeds at a pace faster than DSL and Satellite. Upload speeds of up to 768 Kbps, and download speeds, the more important number, can be as fast as 8 Mbps from providers such as Comcast. Because of this speed, Cable Internet is especially useful for people who enjoy playing on-line games, downloading music, sending instant messages, and surfing graphic-intensive web sites.
One drawback to cable is, the more people using cable, the slower the service. When stated download speeds exceed 2 Mbps this drawback is less noticeable.
Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) was the first digital technology to brings high-bandwidth to homes and small to medium sized businesses (SMBs). This was accomplished over ordinary copper telephone lines already installed inside your walls. Variations of DSL technology are available, collectively referred to as xDSL. DSL connections allow voice, video and data to be transmitted at very fast speeds, 20 to 50 more times faster than an ordinary 56K modem. Both DSL and Cable provide always on internet service.
To turn a phone line into a DSL connection takes a little work. DSL may require special jacks and connections, or changes to your inside wiring in older homes. Your service provider may need to install new wire depending on the type of xDSL you choose. A DSL modem and an Ethernet card are also required for installation. Your service provider usually installs these components. However, you may be able to install these components yourself to save time and money.
DSL speeds tend to lag behind that of Cable broadband internet providers. However, you often have greater control over pricing. For example, some providers allow you to pay for the speed level you desire 768Kbps, 1.5Mbps, 3.0Mbps, contrasting the cable internet providers one speed fits all approach. This allows casual users to save money by purchasing lower broadband connection speeds. Since telephone systems are more flexible than cable systems, you can often chose from two or more providers serving your area. DSL broadband access is generally nationwide, were cable access is not as widely available.
Satellite Internet is the third most popular method of experiencing a broadband connection. While it may not be as popular as DSL or Cable Internet access, 4 million plus homes are currently using satellite dishes to get on-line.
As the name implies, satellite internet uses a space satellite to deliver broadband access to homes. Because of this, even homes in remote areas where DSL or Cable are not available can receive high-speed access. Of course that access does come at a price. Satellite Internet is one of the more costly broadband alternatives, though they try to remain competitive.
While Satellite Internet can be the ideal choice for some broadband seekers, it does have its drawbacks. One is that you must have a clear, unobstructed view of the southern sky to receive the signal. Another is that you may notice lags in the time between clicking on a link and receiving the data. These lags, known as latency, do not interfere with most Internet activities but can cause slowdown during on-line games. Also, connection speeds from satellite internet are currently not advancing as fast as Cable and DSL internet.
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