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Broadband v Ethernet – Who would win in a fight over your business?

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Whether you are an established business looking to upgrade and underscore your online presence with a reliable and stable Internet presence or a start up looking to quickly make your mark on the online world, secure high-speed Internet access is essential.

But the choice can be baffling if you are not across the latest jargon and technical telecommunications developments. Do you know the difference between a LAN and a WAN?  What is a T1? Do you need one? We’ll try to answer all these and more below:

Broadband

Broadband is a high-speed Internet connection that receives and transmits data at a rate of 256 Kbps (Kilobytes per second) or more providing a continuous connection. This solid connection lets users stream media, download files quickly and have web pages load almost instantaneously.

Broadband uses the existing telecoms infrastructure in an area although actual speeds depend on various factors including computer speed, distance from Internet Service Providers (ISP) exchange and broadband package you have subscribed to.

Additionally Broadband can be made up of three different types of connection – Cable, DSL or FiOS.

Cable uses the existing lines and need a cable modem to be installed in the location. The main drawback with cable is that the Internet bandwidth is shared with all the other subscribers in the area. The more there are, the less bandwidth is available all round so connections become slower as more people try to connect.

DSL or Digital Subscriber Line uses phone lines to transfer the data so voice and Internet data can use the same infrastructure at the same time. DSL speed doesn’t rely on other users but can be influenced by the location to the ISP location so can be ineffective if in a rural location or far away from the main hub.

FiOS users fibre optic cables to provide true high-speed Internet access. Data is transmitted as light and the distance it has to travel does not impact the signal. FiOS is expensive to install so can be used most beneficially in areas that already have it. If there is no infrastructure already then consider whether a cheaper option could do.

Ethernet

Ethernet is system that controls how data is transmitted over a local area network or LAN. This is most widely available in offices or rooms but as the technology is becoming more widespread and businesses need to operate seamlessly from various locations they can all connect to without being physically connected. This is known as a wide area network or WAN.

Ethernet connections were traditionally based on one network in one site but as more organisations are using the technology, WANs can be expanded across continent. It brings together LANs in various locations to form one giant network to maximise resources.

Ethernet services typically are faster than Broadband and can even rise as his as 1 Gbps (Gigabyte per second) under the right conditions. Ethernet cables and equipment are relatively inexpensive and can be easily installed. There are two main types of Internet over Ethernet connection – EoC (Ethernet over Copper) and Ethernet over fibre.

EoC uses copper lines to deliver the Internet service while Ethernet over fibre uses light which is quicker and less susceptible to electro-magnetic resistance.

Ultimately you need to decide what is the right solution for your business’s needs and budget. Speak to the experts at Gamma and view their range of broadband and Ethernet based solutions.




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