What do I need to know before connecting broadband?
Most people nowadays are connected to the internet using broadband, which they use to communicate with others, play games, work and ultimately stay connected to the world around them. Perhaps you are moving home and are wondering where to start on organising a new connection, or maybe you are looking into getting a broadband connection for the first time. In this blog, we will explain the key things you need to know before connecting to broadband.
What is broadband?
Of course, it helps to understand what we are talking about first. Broadband is the term used for a type of bandwidth that can transmit a large volume of data at one time. Today, this is mostly used for connecting properties to the internet via a home router. It is available at all times and the term is often used to refer to many different types of connections. Let’s explore the main types of broadband connections.
This is the oldest type of internet and uses the same copper cables as a phone line. A broadband package that uses ASDL includes line rental, and your home is connected from an exchange cabinet. Although this is often the cheapest option, it can be the most unreliable because signals cannot travel well through copper cables. So, the further away you are from the exchange, the worse the signal is.
When choosing a broadband package, the best option is likely to be fibre broadband. Signals travel through fibre optic cables via a pulse of light which is incredibly fast and does not depend on how close you are to exchange. This means that speeds can exceed 100mbps. Fibre broadband is available in most areas worldwide and there are a variety of packages available that offer different speeds and prices.
If you are willing to pay more for faster and more reliable bandwidth, full fibre could be the option for you. This bypasses the exchange and connects directly to your home. So the signal is more reliable, even capable of offering speeds of 1gbps in some areas. This isn’t as widely available but the infrastructure is developing. Learn more about full-fibre here.
Other forms of broadband
There are other forms of broadband such as coaxial cables, mobile networks and satellite. The best choice for you will depend highly on where you live. What your budget is, so make sure to do your research to find a package that works for you.
What speeds do I need?
In general, the higher the speed, the more expensive it will be, but this can be well worth it. If you will be relying on your broadband for lots of activity. If you will just be using it for light browsing on one device at a time, an ASDL connection that offers just 10-11mbps could be sufficient. However, if you are looking to download large files, stream in 4K and game online, you will probably need at least 35mbps. If you have a large family who will be doing lots of these activities at once, ultrafast will be a better option, which is 300mbps and up.