What is a high speed modem?
Distinguishing between various types of modems can be a tedious task for anybody who is not a technology-nut. For a modem to be considered high speed it requires a data rate capability greater than 200 kilobits per second (kbit/s). In other words, “High speed” refers to modems that permit broadband access.
When it comes to high speed modems, there are two common forms currently available in Australia; ADSL and cable.
ADSL modems are designed for speedy connectivity and generally reach download speeds of up to two megabits per second (mbit/s). There are various types of ADSL modems; ADSL 1, ADSL 2 and ADSL 2+. ADSL is the more appropriate choice for renters, as the modem connects via a phone line, unlike cable.
Cable modems are capable of transmission speeds of up to 10 mbit/s, making them over 300 times faster than standard dial-up. One of the other benefits is that you can use the phone at the same time because cable does not connect via the phone line. They are for use over cable lines similar to those used for cable television. Cable plans can be quite expensive, retailing at around $60 per month for connectivity.
Other forms of modems include standard dial-up modems and wireless modems. Dial-up modems are not considered high-speed and reach a maximum of only 56 kbit/s.
Key terms relating to high speed modems
When researching modems you may come across some key terms such as:
- Broadband: High rate data transference technology. In other words, Internet connection with speeds higher than 200 kbit/s.
- Megabit: Describes a unit of data. A megabit is the equivalent of 1024 kilobits.
- Download: Transferring of data from a server or computer to your device. When you are viewing a web page you are downloading data from another computer.
- ISP: Stands for Internet Service Provider. Your ISP will be the person you have your plan through. Optus, Dodo, and Bigpond are all Australian Internet service providers.
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