By Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols for Networking | September 27, 2021 | Topic: Broadband
It used to be that we could do okay with less than 10 Megabits per second (Mbps) internet. That was before we filled our evenings with streaming movies and TV shows and our days with working from home on Zoom meetings and Software-as-a-Service applications. Now, we need at least 25 Mbps, the more the better.
Fiber internet offers the best speeds for those lucky enough to have it, and cable is the second-best option. After that, it's a real drop-off. For example, DSL tops out, in theory, at 100 Mbps, but in practice it maxes out at 25 Mbps. It's also on its way out, with big providers like AT&T no longer offering it. There are other alternatives such as Wireless ISPs (WISP), 4G-based internet, the old and slow satellite internet services, and the fast (but difficult to get installed) low-earth orbit (LEO) Starlink. Now there's a new wireless internet alternative to add to the mix: 5G internet.