A good and reliable internet connection is integral to every business, be it big or small. The fate of your business depends on it. Your employees won’t be motivated or satisfied with their work. Moreover, their productivity will always remain shaky, all because of a poor internet connection.
Now comes the real talk. Which type of internet connection is best for your business? There are so many options already out there, it’s easy to lose focus on one type that is right for you.
If speed is what you’re all about, then investing in a cable or fiber internet connection is the way to go. These two types of connections are two different poles: cable is affordable and widely available, while fiber lacks availability in more areas and costs excessively much, but none of that has kept fiber-shoppers from investing in it.
Table of Contents
Starting With the Basics
What is Fiber Internet?
Fiber Internet is the gold standard internet connection that’s relatively new in the market. It’s capable of delivering high internet speeds, exceptional data transmission, and reliability that turns all the other types green with envy.
Fiber internet is currently available for businesses and households in select areas only. Now that we’ve mentioned it, fiber internet has turned out to be a tremendous productivity booster. The credit of that goes to its capability of reaching heavy bandwidth in the shortest amount of time.
Right now, the expansion of fiber internet is still under the works for most American neighborhoods, with rural areas standing on top. This is the reason why the overall fiber availability stands feebly at only 30%. On the other hand, countries like Japan, and South Korea have a soaring fiber internet availability of 80% and higher. Experts are estimating that the fiber network expansion in the USA will take around 4 years or more to reach 50% of American neighborhoods.
What is Cable Internet?
If there’s a type of internet connection that wins at availability and affordability, then cable internet stands unbeatable. More than 88% of the US population is reaping benefits of cable internet. Not only in urban vicinities, rather cable internet is also easily available in rural areas next to DSL and satellite internet.
Cable internet came out after dial-up and DSL internet. Unlike dial-up that required a phone line to work. And when it did work, there was a lot of interference in the phone line and the speeds weren’t quite up there too. Cable internet works on a coaxial cable network – the same technology that transmits data to power up your TV sets.
Cable internet outshines DSL when it comes to consistency. The network contains twisted copper, which is why sudden connection drops and outages are the last thing one would ever want to worry about. Moreover, if you live in an area where bad weather is a frequent visitor, cable internet never ceases to surpass expectations with its durability and robustness.
Fiber VS Cable
A Cursory Comparison
Cable internet works via coaxial cable. This coaxial cable contains a copper shield, a copper core insulated with aluminum, and an outer layer consisting of plastic. Coaxial cable can simultaneously transmit data to TV and the internet. This is why you see cable companies taking advantage of this and offering you bundles with TV and internet together as offered by Spectrum gold package.
Fiber internet works via Fiber Optic cable. Fiber Optic cable consists of minuscule glass strands or fibers that transmit data via light signals. These light signals play a huge part in delivering super-fast download speeds over long distances. Compared with cable, fiber internet meets with as few distortions as possible.
Cable internet can deliver a speed range of 10 to 1000 Mbps download. The upload speed range, however, stays at a minimum range of 5 to 50 Mbps. Such speeds can be sufficient for households and small to medium-sized businesses. For heavy downloading, HD video streaming, and even gaming the aforementioned speed bracket is enough. However, the only hurdle is the speed drop during peak times. Users may experience speeds reduced to 25% when the network traffic is high.
Okay, so for starters, fiber internet is fast. Download speed range that Fiber internet offers usually starts at 250 Mbps and goes all the way to 1000 Mbps and upload speeds are the same. You can tell that your provider is offering you 100% pure fiber-optic connection when the upload and download speeds are same, i.e. symmetrical. Moreover, unlike cable, fiber-optic internet does not reduce its performance during peak times. No matter how high the traffic, fiber internet will always remain consistent.
Cable internet is easily accessible all across the US with an approximately 90% coverage rate. Many top ISPs offer cable internet bundles that can easily keep you ahead of your daily tasks and budget.
In the case of fiber internet, availability still stands as one of the biggest bottlenecks. More than 70% of the US still cannot access fiber internet in their neighborhoods. It’s okay if questions like ‘where to get fiber optic internet near me?’ keep popping up in your head. Companies are investing heavily for the nationwide expansion of fiber internet in the USA. Therefore, chances are, you may soon find a reliable fiber internet provider in your neighborhood.
The robustness of cable internet wears out over time. Harsh weather conditions and change in temperatures are two factors to blame. Another thing that affects the reliability of cable internet is the interference from other power lines in the proximity. Radio signals also keep fiddling with data transmission, resulting in you experiencing a sudden blip in your connection.
Fiber internet wins at reliability. Fiber-optic cables have glass fibers that do not conduct electricity. Risk of fires and fluctuating voltages, fiber-optic network is not susceptible to major electricity disruptions. Moreover, harsh weather and temperature also don’t cause fiber internet connectivity to flinch.
However, fiber cables are extremely sensitive to external changes. A single bend or a twist even by accident may cause damage to the entire network.
Cable internet is affordable in terms of installation and subscription, both. ISPs nowadays offer bundles that allow subscribers to enjoy cable internet, TV, and even phone at a relatively much lower price tag.
In terms of installation, fiber internet is extremely expensive. This is the reason why there’s still a lack of fiber internet infrastructure in most American neighborhoods. The subscription cost, however, has come down significantly. Even though subscribing to it would still make your wallet itch, but it’s an investment nonetheless.
All Things Concluded
Households and businesses that can get fiber internet in their neighborhood are wasting no time subscribing to it. Just right off the bat, fiber internet is consistent, faster, and capable of carrying out heavy-bandwidth tasks.
If your neighborhood doesn’t approve of fiber internet connectivity yet, then you can go for a cable internet connection instead. Cable internet is a faster alternative to DSL and satellite. For rural areas where fiber internet will take a while to reach, cable internet would be the best choice for the tremendously reduced latency it offers.