DSL vs. Cable Internet

The world has become heavily dependent on technology, especially computers, smartphones and most importantly, the Internet. Nowadays, it’s all about finding the most reliable and fastest connection.

If you are planning on upgrading to a faster connection, one of the first things you’ll need to consider is whether you want DSL or Cable Internet. Choosing the right connection and Internet Service Provider (ISP) can often require extensive time and research. There are a few crucial questions you should ask yourself beforehand.

Understanding the difference between Cable and DSL will help you make an informed decision when choosing which plan to go with, or upgrading your services.

DSL vs Cable: Real-World Speed

Both DSL and Cable Internet provide high-speed access. Historically, Cable Internet speeds have been faster. However, the speed of DSL Internet has increased as technology improves, and service providers upgrade their networks. Here are a few quick comparisons of DSL and Cable Internet.

Modem

DSL

DSL transmits data across an active copper telephone line connected to your home to provide service. Unlike Cable, DSL will not fluctuate based on your neighbour’s Internet usage, which means you will always experience consistent speeds. If you don’t have an active phone line, you may need to pay an additional monthly fee to run a dry loop (a phone line only used for DSL Internet).

Advantages

  • Faster speed than dial-up
  • Variety of connection speeds and pricing available
  • The speed you get will always be the same – no slowdowns during peak hours!

Disadvantages

  • Data is received faster than it sends
  • Might not be available in remote areas
  • The farther away you are from a provider’s central location, the slower the data speed. You might only be able to get DSL 25 while your neighbour qualifies for DSL 50.
  • Needs an active line from a telephone provider or an additional monthly fee for dry loop

Cable

The key difference between Cable and DSL Internet is how information is delivered and received. Cable Internet uses predefined frequency ranges to pass data, using a signal over the coaxial cable lines which run to your home. Coaxial cables are used for cable TV setups and are heavily shielded. Cable Internet speeds can vary because it is a shared connection that also feeds to your neighbour’s homes.

One of the most significant advantages of Cable Internet is the speeds! Cable allows for higher speeds that are much faster than DSL in some cases.

Advantages

  • Performance and speed isn’t based on distance from the provider’s central location
  • Higher speeds available than DSL
  • Coaxial cables are heavily shielded, which means that if you qualify for Cable, you can get any of the speeds offered

Disadvantages

  • Service can become congested during peak periods (i.e. weeknight prime time) because of shared bandwidth
  • Might not be available in remote areas

Planning to Upgrade?

Understanding the difference between DSL and Cable Internet will help you make an informed decision. Worldline offers Unlimited DSL and Unlimited Cable packages to suit your Internet needs. To find the right plan for you, visit www.worldline.ca or call in to speak with one of our agents about finding a plan that suits your needs!