High speed Internet, also known as “broadband Internet,” is a type of Internet access which allows for a high data rate. It is much faster than the standard dial-up connection (which is normally only capable of 56 kilobits per second), and the user may retain full use of their phone line.
High speed Internet connections are becoming more common as technology advances, and numerous companies now offer broadband service. These include: Comcast high speed Internet, Cox high speed Internet, AT&T Yahoo! high speed Internet and SBC Yahoo! high speed Internet.
The data transfer rate for a high speed Internet connection typically ranges from 64 kilobits per second to 1 megabit per second. While many consider anything above 256 kbit/s to be broadband, the FCC recently defined a broadband connection as any which exceeds 768 kilobits per second.
The Reality of High Speed Internet
While many Internet service providers may advertise a certain bandwidth for their service, the truth can actually be quite different. This is an important fact to be aware of when asking, “What is high speed Internet?”.
Many ISPs will allow more subscribers than they can fully handle, relying on the fact that most customers won’t use the full connection capacity of their high speed Internet connection. While this is normally true, the practice can present connection speed problems from time to time (especially when users are connected to peer-to-peer file sharing programs with high bandwidth demands).
Types of High Speed Internet Access
The following types of high speed Internet access are commonly available to consumers and businesses:
- DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) – Data is transmitted over copper wiring already available in homes and businesses. For residential customers who don’t receive much data, the most common form is known as the asymmetrical digital subscriber line. For businesses which use video conferencing, the most common form is the symmetrical digital subscriber line.
- Cable Modem – This broadband service uses the same cables which deliver the signal for your television. Transmission speeds of 1.5 Mbps or greater are available. The speed of a cable modem is similar to that of the DSL connection.
- Fiber – A more recent technology, fiber optics convert the electrical signals to light and send them through thin glass fibers. While this service is expanding, it is still limited compared to cable and DSL.
- Satellite – A form of wireless broadband, this service depends on satellites orbiting the planet. Weather can affect the quality of the signal, but it’s ideal for customers living in isolated or rural areas. In some cases, DSL and cable connections offer faster service.
- Wireless – A radio link is established between the customer’s location and the provider’s facility. An external antenna may be needed, but speeds are comparable to DSL and cable. This is another high speed Internet connection which is often available to people in rural settings.
- BPL (broadband over powerlines) – A new technology, BPL delivers signals over the existing power lines near your home. Speeds are similar to DSL and cable, and it uses electrical outlets and connections which are already in place.
Synopsis of High Speed Internet
So what is high speed Internet? It’s a type of Internet access which offers a high rate of data transfer at an affordable price. Faster than dial-up, it continues to evolve with new innovations like BPL.