A complete guide to fibre optic internet

Fibre optic technology has changed the way we go about our day to day lives, for the better. No longer do we need to be frustrated by slow internet connections or download speeds. Fibre optic internet is the fastest, most advanced and most reliable internet technology on the market today. 

So what is fibre optics exactly? Fibre optics, as the name suggests, are optical fibres that are used to transmit data. These thousands of small fibres are thin strands of very pure glass that is not much large than a human hair. These fibres are arranged in bundles to form optical cables and are then used to transmit light signals over long distances. The glass fibres use light to carry data and transmit this data between fibres. This is why fibre is so much faster and more reliable than other kinds of internet technology. Fibre optic speeds can go as high as10Gbpss, where other kinds of internet technology perform at much slower speeds and are often susceptible to external influences, which can reduce the quality and speed of your connection. 

When we speak about fibre optics and how the technology works, it is easy to become overwhelmed as it is quite technical. The last mile in tech talk is known as the last stretch of fibre that connects the user to the backbone of the internet. This is where we, as internet users, are able to connect to the rest of the world via optical fibres. The backbone is the core of the internet; the core, if you will. Every time you connect to the web, you are taken through a series of steps before you get to your online destination, and this is the backbone. 

When you apply for a fibre optic internet connection or line, you need to choose the kind of connection most suited to your needs. There are many different types of optic connection packages available, and what you will use the internet for will determine which kind of ‘last mile connection’ you go for. Internet service providers offer you a connection package based on your needs, and the difference between these packages is how pure your fibre optic internet connection is. These connections are known as fibre to the X, with the x representing where the fibre connection ends. For example, FTTH refers to fibre to the home, which refers to an internet package that is suitable for home use. FTTB refers to fibre to the business – a connection or packages more suitable for large businesses.  

FTTP, FTTH, FTTB, FTTD refer to fibre to the premise, home, business or desktop. These are the most direct fibre lines, which means you are receiving a very high-quality fibre connection straight to your home, business,  premise or desktop without any copper cables involved. 

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Fibre optic internet is the fastest growing internet technology, but there are still other kinds of technology that people opt for. These include ADSL, cable and wireless internet. ADSL is an internet connection that makes use of copper phone lines to transmit data. These cables usually have been in use for phone lines for years and are generally quite old and often degraded. Cable internet also uses copper cables to transmit data, but these cables were first used for television connection. Wireless internet does not use copper cables but instead functions through radio waves. 

There are many benefits to all of the above-mentioned internet technologies. Generally, they are a lot more affordable than fibre optic internet connections. Internet connections like ADSL that work with copper cables are susceptible to external influences like theft, degradation and storms. Wireless is also susceptible to external radio frequencies and waves and so your internet connection can be negatively impacted. Fibre is not affected by external influences. 

It is virtually impossible to go about your day to day life without accessing the internet in some way. Our jobs have become dependent on our internet connection. Our home is run on an internet connection: we shop for groceries, gifts and clothes online. We do research and work from home, and family time is reliant on a fast connection speed in order to stream that series or movie. We need to be able to access the web at all times, even when we travel because our work is becoming more cloud-based. 

It has never been more important to have a fast, reliable, affordable and secure internet connection. 

Take our business connectivity guide to find the perfect solution for your business! 

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