Wireless or Wired Broadband – Which is Better?
People all over the world cannot be as connected as today without the internet. Chats, collaboration apps, emails, instant messaging, and video calls all happen via online connectivity. The internet touches every aspect of people’s life. How they play, live, socialize, and work evolves in the digital world. As the number of people who access the internet globally, so does the way to connect evolved. From a simple dial-up to ADSL comes the mobile hotspot, wired broadband, and wireless connections.
There’s a wide range of wireless internet plans at CompareBroadband.com.au, an Australian broadband comparison website. This led us to think between wireless broadband and wired broadband as to which is better.
The Evolution of the Internet
In the 1960s, the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) of the US Defense Department created the ARPANET. It connected US military installations in a different location through a distributed network. As such, it is considered the prototype of the internet. In 1983, ARPANET adopted the Transmission Control Protocol and Internet Protocol (TCP/IP). From there, researchers assembled the “network of networks” which became the modern internet. Tim Berner-Lee invented the World Wide Web (WWW) in the 1990s. This led to the introduction of commercial broadband.
Dial-ups were introduced in 1992 powered by modems wired to a switch telephone network. In 1999, wireless internet was rolled out publicly with the release of the Apple Airport. But Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) began to replace dial-ups by the year 2000 because they are more affordable. ADSL is broadband connections that are always on through wired Ethernet connections in a modem. They were very soon replaced by cable broadbands operating over cable TV wires. Cable broadbands are much faster than ADSL. Internet providers across the globe started offering wireless internet plans or WiFi in 2002. Wireless broadband became popular in 2004 as cellphones and other wireless devices sprouted in the market.
What is a Wired Broadband?
Wired broadband is a configuration using Ethernet cables connected to a modem or router to establish an internet connection. Internet data is transferred from one device to another through cable connections.
Wired broadband plans are more reliable and stable than wireless internet plans. This is because the cables are not affected by outside interference as WiFi signals do. They are also generally faster because the network nodes communicate directly with the connection points. Nodes are programs that transfer data to an internet device. Users can only connect to the network through Ethernet cables. As such, wired broadband is much secured because they are free from unauthorised access.
One downside of wired broadband is its lack of mobility. It may be inconvenient to add extra cables or relocate them frequently. It may take longer to set them up as the connection uses more components. The cable wires can also be an accident hazard if positioned properly. There is also a limited number of devices you can connect to the internet depending on the available Ethernet ports in your modem or routers.
What is a Wireless Broadband?
Wireless broadband is a configuration using microwave signals or radio frequencies to establish internet connections. Wireless internet plans allow devices to connect without using cables.
Wireless internet plans are easier and faster to install as they use less equipment. There’s no need to spend time connecting each device to Ethernet cables. They also have more flexibility to access the internet in any location. Technically, they also don’t have limits on the number of devices you can connect to the network.
Wireless broadband plans are not as reliable and as stable as wired broadband plans. They are prone to network interferences like other microwave signals, physical obstructions, and radio frequencies. The latency can differ based on your location. They are also less secure because the internet connection traveling through the air can be intercepted. Wireless broadbands also lack the speed capabilities of wired broadband. It’s because they are dependent on the current configuration and are likely prone to signal interference within their environment.
Wireless or Wired broadband – Which is Better?
Determining which between wireless or wired broadband is better boils down to the more convenient setup for your internet needs.
If you have a desktop or PC that sits in a single corner of your house, wired broadband could work best. It can provide better quality streaming and multi-player gaming. You are guaranteed to get a secure and solid connection through the Ethernet cables.
If you have mobile devices and the latest technological gadgets, wireless broadband can be a good choice. It is also a great option for people who are always on the go or constantly traveling from one place to another. Lastly, wireless internet plans are also a solution if a wired broadband connection is not feasible in your location.