Understanding Broadband – Ready to Upgrade?
Are you ready to upgrade your residential service to DSL or business service to real broadband or T1? Well, the answer lies in what you need. Before you can realize your needs, you must understand more of what the word broadband really means. Below I will try to give you some realtechnical terms broken down for a better understanding.
First of all, you must know some of the jargon! The word broadband itself simply is defined as a high speed Internet service that gives you continuous access to the Internet on a consistent basis. Broadband includes a technology called ADSL which stands for Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line and requires a special modem to access the line. This technology uses standard copper telephone lines to provide Internet access speeds from 1.5 to 9 megabytes per second. DSL technologies or Digital Subscriber Lines use a higher frequency than standard telephone communication.
There are several types of DSL configurations including ADSL or Asymmetrical Digital Subscriber Lines, HDSL or High data rate DSL, and VDSL or Very High Data Rate DSL. A DSL line dynamically increases the capacity of ordinary copper wire. Since the signal is stronger the closer you are to the DSL Access Multiplexor or DSLAM the faster your signal will be the closer you are to the DSL provider’s Central Office or distribution point. DSL lines are typically used for small business and residential customers. Of course as your needs grow, it should be understood; that the more data you need to transfer, the larger the pipe (Internet access line or physical copper wire) you need to transport the data.
This is where more sophisticated forms of broadband come in for business use. The technical terms for this type of broadband is measured by the amount of data that the line transfers. T1 -Transmits data in the range of 1.5 million bits per second and primarily used by small and medium sized business with heavy upload and Internet traffic. A T-1 line is usually leased by bandwidth used. Typical uses are large graphic files, photographs, sound files, music, video, etc. However, your company should evaluate the amount of data and computers that are connected for Internet Access at the same time. T1 lines in the United States carry a 24 pulse code modulation (PCM) signal using time-division multiplexing (TDM). These lines use copper wire which usually connect major metropolitan areas. There are a number of high quality companies that offer T1 Broadband and you will find that prices do vary so it is important that you compare.
You may also find that your local cable provider may have introduced their version of broadband which actually can emulate one side of a T1 connection. However, you should be aware… you may actually get 1.5 mpbs on the download side, but when you try to upload a file, your bandwidth is cut down to about 1/10th. A cable connection is made for residential customers to surf the Internet with great speed and download files, but not made for you to upload with great speed. This slow upload limit is the major difference between a real T1 line and cable.
There are many types of broadband connections that are much faster circuit than T1, these range from T3 (3 times faster than T1) to OC-48, and a frame relay connection which really are the same thing just MUCH larger pipes (lines) that can transmit the data. I have found while working with broadband providers you really need a persona coach to help guide you through the process. Not only can personal coaches such as ImageLink Networks guide you through the red tape, the efficiency that comes from our presence and telecom knowledge will save you time and money in the end. It is important to seek an unbiased opinion and research for the best real time price for your T1 line. Broadband is a commodity, and changes as new subscribers come online in specified areas. To make a long story shorter, you are ready for a broadband connection if you are tired of waiting for a standard dial up to connect and download.
Do not be confused, dial up companies use a standard phone line to connect you to their server to bring you an Internet connection. One thing is for sure, if you ever experience a broadband connection via cable, T1, T3, DS-3, or better you will never ever go back to dial up.
Guest Columnist David Jackso represents ImageLink Networks, a subdivision of ImageLink Incorporated a Maryland based consulting and software company. If you are interested in finding a personal coach to help with your broadband decisions, you can start by using our dynamic rate pricing tool to find the best real-time broadband quote for your area.