What is Broadband?

What is Broadband?
Broadband can be simply defined as a fast connection to the Internet that is always on. It allows you to send emails, surf the web, download images and music, watch videos, join a web conference, and much more. Broadband has the ability to bring people from different regions together in a common meeting place, enable employees to work from home, or students to attend class and complete assignments remotely.

How Can I Get It?
Broadband can be delivered to customers in many different ways. On this site you can learn about the different types of broadband connections from DSL and Cable, to Wireless and Satellite service. What type of broadband connection you can receive depends upon the service providers in your area, and their capabilities.

How much faster is broadband compared to dial-up?

    How much time does it take to download....
 

 Dial-Up (56Kbps)

 ISDN (128Kbps)

 Cable/DSL (512Kbps)

 Cable/DSL (1.5Mbps)

 Cable/DSL (6Mbps)

 Cable/Fiber (20Mbps)

  A Web Page (150Kb)

 27 seconds

12 seconds

 2 seconds

1 second 

0.2 seconds

0.05 seconds

  An Audio File (6Mb)

11.5 minutes

5 minutes

 1 minute

 26 seconds

8 seconds

2.4 seconds

 A Movie (800Mb)

27.5 hours

12 hours 

1 hour 

31 minutes  

18 minutes

5 minutes


Though speed is probably most important to the consumer, there are other benefits to getting a broadband connection.

The "always on" feature of a broadband connection means you don't have to dial a number, never have to risk getting a busy signal, and don't have to deal with any additional phone charges for connecting to the Internet.  Also, broadband connections do not tie up any voice lines.  Dial-up required another phone line if you wanted to talk while online. 

Are there hidden or additional costs?

Most broadband services are billed on a monthly rate basis.  However, some of these services are add-on charges to services you already have with the company, such as local phone or TV services.  There is usually a charge for either renting or purchasing equipment to connect your computer, though these charges are typically minimal when weighed against the benefits of the broadband connection itself.