The internet is a basic digital necessity. Whether for home or for the office, you can’t get through the day without it. Since we rely heavily on smooth service, interruptions or outages are a nasty annoyance. You may have noticed that some of the faster services like fiber optic internet are less prone to disruptions. Is this because they are faster? Or is this because of a number of factors that have nothing to do with speed?
Before we get into that, let’s take a look at modern internet services, their speeds and their inclination towards interruptions.
Types of Internet Services
You may have heard the term broadband internet. But do you know what it actually means? Broadband is a fairly broad umbrella term for internet services better than dial-up internet. This includes the following:
- Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)
- Cable Internet
- Satellite Internet
- Fiber-Optic Internet
Let’s examine each type of broadband in more detail and see if speed equals fewer interruptions.
Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)
DSL uses fixed wirelines, usually copper telephone lines, to deliver internet service to your home. DSL bundle deals are among the cheapest in modern internet services. As far as speeds go, you can get anywhere from between 1 to 500 Mbps in download speeds. Upload speeds typically don’t go beyond the 8 Mbps mark. Unlike dial-up, DSL does not interfere with your phone service.
However, copper wires are notoriously lousy at transmitting internet signals. There are usually some line losses along the way, especially along longer lines. Some providers use a wider fiber optic network before linking up with copper wires to your home. This could make for a more stable connection.
Cable internet works using the coaxial cables you use for your cable TV services. Some newer services offer HFC or hybrid fiber-coaxial connections, which are reportedly much faster. Cable internet download speeds may not be as fast as FiOS internet but still manage to reach the 300 Mbps mark.
Depending on your provider, you may experience different speeds. Cable internet can manage up to 20 Mbps in upload speeds. For the most part, cable internet is a good fit between price, speed, and reliability. Coaxial cables are less prone to interruptions than copper lines so you may have a better overall internet experience.
Satellite internet is great for areas that don’t have access to wired internet services. But of course, the internet plans don’t come cheap. Satellite internet beams information directly to the receiver in your home using a satellite positioned in orbit. Since the satellite is in geosynchronous orbit with the earth, it is always at exactly the same position.
However, satellite internet speeds are not very fast, and it is not the most reliable form of internet services out there either. Satellite internet speeds typically reach the 25 Mbps mark barring any interruptions. Bad weather can sometimes disrupt the quality of your signal. Since the receiver needs an unobstructed line of sight to the satellite, overcast weather, storms, etc. can compromise your service.
Fiber optic internet is by far the fastest and most reliable form of internet in the world today. It transmits information in the form of light through tiny strands of glass fibers, or fiber optic cables. Since light travels much faster than radio or cable signals, fiber internet is many times faster.
Most fiber optic connections can reach download speeds up to 1 Gbps! Upload speeds go as far up as 800 Mbps depending on your provider. While fiber internet is also pricier, it is much more reliable than other internet services. It doesn’t lose signals over distances. It is also less prone to damage from heatwaves or power surges.
So what is the fastest and most reliable type of internet? Fiber internet, obviously. But that does not mean its speed is a measure of its reliability. Fiber internet transmits data in the form of light. Since electricity does not play a role in transmission over a fiber optic line, you can expect a more reliable service.
It really doesn’t have much to do with speed. Of course, fiber internet costs considerably more than even premium cable subscriptions with complete channel lineup. So you may want to make a decision carefully. Let us know if you found this blog helpful.