This is a question that comes up all the time. The following two links are to articles on ehow.com, that we thought might help you better understand this ever changing technology:
According to “ehow.com” FIOS might be the fastest, but FIOS (“fiber optic service”) a product from Verizon, is not available everywhere. Here are some of the differences according to “ehow.com” FiOS potentially offers a lot more bandwidth than cable modems do, and both FIOS and cable offer more download speed than a typical DSL connection.
All Internet providers rate their Internet speeds with two numbers -- download speed and upload speed, where the upload speed is lower – here are the major 3:
- Verizon advertises its top FIOS bandwidth as 20/5 -- 20 megabits per second (Mbps) download speed, and 5 Mbps upload speed
- Comcast digital broadband typically runs at 5 to 7 Mbps download speed and 2 Mbps (or less) upload speeds
- DSL (Digital Service Telephone Lines) are typically 1.5 Mbps download speed and 0.7 Mbps upload speeds
Each has advantages and disadvantages:
- Verizon’s FiOS service is offered in a limited set of areas and the fiber optic cable has to be run to your home once it is available in your area
- Cable Internet, such as Comcast’s digital broadband, typically has the widest general reach and is available anywhere there's a coaxial cable connection, over the same wires
- DSL (Digital Service Telephone Lines) have somewhat wider coverage, but your home has to be within a certain distance of the telephone switching station
So although Cable Internet may offer higher maximum speeds than DSL or wireless connections, remember that DSL lines belongs only to the person paying for it – whereas, cable connections are usually shared with others in our area, which is why cable users often have fluctuations in the download speeds. So again, according to some, DSL – although slower – might offer more consistent speed..
No matter what – you have to do your homework and be sure you are comparing apples & apples and with technology changing as rapidly as it is, it’s another reason it’s never a good idea to sign a long term contract for any type of service…
Your personal budget should also be a major consideration before making any choice – are the extra few seconds worth hundreds of $$$$ every year??