Many people find it difficult to decide what type of internet connection is better: cable or fiber. Fiber delivers the fastest internet speed, while cable internet is easily available at affordable prices. Both of them are reliable internet connections and offer speeds as high as 1 Gbps. However, cable internet might not provide you with symmetrical speeds. On the other hand, fiber delivers the same upload speeds as download speeds which makes it faster than cable.
We have compiled some details for you to understand the differences between the two connection types:
How Does Cable Internet Work?
Cable internet delivers internet signals to your home using cable TV lines (coaxial cables). With fast download speeds and easy availability, most providers offer different plans at different prices. This connection can be established with coaxial cables which are made from copper, aluminum, and copper shields, an insulating sheath, and an outer plastic layer. These coaxial wires share the bandwidth amongst the households in one neighborhood connected to the internet.
When it comes to speed, it has the potential to offer fast speeds like fiber internet. However, most cable operators throttle the speeds to avoid congestion on the network, due to the shared bandwidth during peak hours and otherwise. It is reliable and offers speeds faster than satellite internet or DSL. In addition, it’s widely available across the country, compared to fiber internet that still has very limited availability.
Cable internet is the best option if you don’t want the symmetrical upload and download speeds offered by fiber internet.
Here are some of the best cable internet plans:
|Internet plan||Maximum speed||Price|
|Xfinity Gigabit Extra||1,200 Mbps||$70.00 per month|
|Spectrum Internet Ultra||Up to 400 Mbps||$69.99 per month for 12 months|
|Optimum 1 Gig||940 Mbps||$49.99 per month|
|Cox Internet Ultimate 500||500 Mbps||$79.99 per month|
How Does Fiber Internet Work?
Fiber internet connects your devices at home or office to the internet signals that travel through fiber-optic cables. With super-fast download and upload speeds, fiber is available in very few areas. the internet signals travel as light pulses in fiber optic cables, that are made up of thin glass fibers. These cables are extremely robust and less vulnerable to external factors. The best part? They don’t have shared bandwidth, and each household gets a dedicated connection. This means no throttling or network congestion!
A single fiber-optic cable consists of one optical core made from plastic or glass, which is further wrapped in an inwardly reflective cladding to transmit light signals. Since it works just as well even if there’s a bend or curve in the cable, it is known to be better at transmitting data at long distances, compared to the cables that use electrical signals. It has the potential to carry higher bandwidth than copper cables and doesn’t get affected by any sort of interruption. This is because it doesn’t use electrical signals or equipment which can influence your connection to the internet.
|Internet provider||Speed range||Price range|
|AT&T Fiber||300-1,000 Mbps||$55.00-$180.00 per month|
|Google Fiber||1,000-2,000 Mbps||$70.00-$100.00 per month|
|Verizon||300-940 Mbps||$39.99-$89.99 per month|
|Frontier||500-2,000 Mbps||$49.99-$149.99 per month|
|CenturyLink||200-940 Mbps||$65.00 per month|
Fiber internet is the best-wired internet type, available for home networks. The only setback is that you will have to be lucky to find it in your area because of the lack of fiber infrastructure in many parts of the US. Since it can be very expensive and time-consuming to roll out new infrastructure for fiber internet, cable internet providers continue to use coaxial cables instead of installing fiber lines for their customers.
Here are some of the best fiber internet plans for you:
|Internet plan||Maximum speed||Price|
|AT&T Fiber Internet 1000||940 Mbps||$80.00 per month|
|Verizon Internet 500/500||500 Mbps||$64.99 per month|
|Google Fiber 2000||2,000 Mbps||$100.00 per month|
|Frontier Fiber Gig||940 Mbps||$74.99 per month|
Cable vs Fiber
Both connections are used to send and receive data at similar speeds. Some internet service providers offer hybrid networks, such as Spectrum and Xfinity. They are largely made from fiber and use coaxial cables in the last stage—which makes them affordable to the customers.
Cable internet is relatively slower than fiber because of its infrastructure which is made for cable TV. With time, it’s commonly used for internet connectivity; however, cable providers can only offer limited bandwidth for each customer.
Now, even the fastest cable internet offers a download speed higher than the upload speed. This is because cable providers were aware of their customers’ needs for downloading more data than uploading. On the other hand, fiber has upload speeds similar to its download speeds, which makes it the fastest home internet connection. So, if you are looking for the fastest internet connection for your home, don’t forget to check out AT&T’s 100% pure fiber connections. You might also be interested in AT&T Wireless plans if you need to remain connected even on the go. Check out BuyTVInternetPhone for the best internet deals with fast speeds at affordable prices.
When it comes to price, different providers have different charges for internet packages. If you want to save some money, go for cable internet. But, it’ll be slower than fiber with a few fewer gigabits because fiber offers only gigabit plans for its customers.
The Bottom Line:
Fiber is the best type of internet connection with faster speeds than most cable connections. So, if you can find a provider in your area, go for it! But, if you can’t, then a cable internet connection is the best alternative for you.