Distinguish between Broadband and DSL Connections

Difference between Broadband and DSL Connections

As the internet world is flying by leaps and bounds every year, you need to make sure that when it’s time for you to get your own connection, it’s at par with the latest technology in order to have access to high-speed, hassle-free internet services.

Terms like broadband, DSL and wireless technologies including fiber optics or satellites might be thrown your way during your research. While the terminologies may stump you for a moment, here is a brief breakdown on some basic stuff you will need to know.

Broadband basically refers to internet signals that are of high bandwidth or capacity, with quite a number of internet services being referred to as broadband also by virtue of their high-speed broadband transmission.

Broadband access internet access is definitely faster than the traditional dial-up system and includes technologies like DSL (Digital Subscriber Line), coaxial cables, fiber-optic cables, satellites access or other wireless systems. The point to be noted here is that while all these technologies can be loosely referred to as broadband, the reveres doesn’t hold true; for example not all broadband connections can be considered as DSL!

Earlier, broadband internet was defined as downstream speeds faster than 512 Kbps; this definition has been getting moderated with time and currently stands at around 4 Mbps or more of internet connection. A number of DSL aren’t this fast.

DSL, or Digital Subscriber Line is a type of wired broadband internet connection that utilizes the wires of a telephone service to deliver high-speed internet access. Depending on the location and distance from the internet service provider (ISP), speeds can range from 256 Kbps to 24 Mbps. The quality of the telephone lines and the material used also matters when it comes to deliverance of speeds. The telephone wires used are typically copper (twisted pair) wires. Other than this, the DSL plan that you are subscribed for also matters when it comes to broadband speeds availed.

Another advantage of DSL connections is that you don’t need to drill any further holes into your walls as it can accessed over your telephone wire – all you need is to plug in a DSL modem! This type of broadband connection is now slowly getting phased out as other faster wireless systems like cable and fiber optics are taking over the scenario. Cables can provide speeds that are 100-300 Mbps while fiber optics can provide speeds up to 1000 Mbps.

So when choosing an internet service provider for yourself, a DSL provider may not always be best as connections tend to deteriorate with distance from the ISP provider. That being said, wireless connections also tend to suffer from presence of trees or constructions obstructing the way. The best way out would be to ask your neighbors which connection they are using!