Internet Speed – Dial up Internet Access
Dial up Internet access started the modern Internet speed revolution. It was the only method of Internet access in 1994. Dial up allows a user to access the Internet through an analog modem and traditional telephone system. Dial up internet speeds began at 0.1 kbits per second. One kbits is equal to 1000 bytes of information per second.
Over the next few years Dial up slowly increased speeds up to 56 kbps. Did you know, in the 1990’s U. S. Federal Law limited Dial up Internet speeds to 53 kbits per second? The U. S. Government feared Hackers could breach U.S. Government networks and disappear before they could be traced by the proper authorities.
This made it very, very difficult to download anything apart from text. At full speed a single, low-quality song (3.5MB) would take around ten minutes or more to download. If you wanted to download a low quality movie (700MB), it would take 28 hours at full speed, or around 3-5 days at low speed. In addition to atrocious speeds, dial-up internet was also extremely inconvenient because it took up full use of the telephone. People were unable to use the telephone and surf the net at the same time, forcing them to choose between massive inconvenience or the cost of a second line.
Internet Speed – Broadband Internet Access
Broadband internet access breathed new life into the internet in the early 2000s. In the years since, broadband technology has gone from strength to strength by giving internet users faster internet speed without disrupting their telephone usage. The advent of broadband networks meant that people were able download files, songs, TV shows and movies at greater speeds. This opened up a whole new world in online media – on 56k connection speeds, sites such as YouTube just weren’t possible.
Internet speeds continue to increase to meet customer demands. Internet Service Providers (ISPs) are building faster networks with the development of new technologies. By 1996 the first mobile phone had Internet connectivity, and not long after in 2008 studies showed that more people accessed the Internet via mobile phones than PCs. The development of 4G networks, which set peak speed requirements at 100 Mbit/s, help users connect to the Internet at speeds never before seen with a mobile device.
Recently, we’ve seen the rise of new broadband technology, such as mobile broadband and cable broadband. The former lets you get online on the go, while the latter has dramatically boosted connection speeds to a maximum of 100Mbps.