The Fuss About Fiber
What’s All the Fuss About
Maybe you’ve heard of fiber-optic internet on the news. Google Fiber’s slow spread across the country has made some waves in the media. Perhaps it came up in conversation with a tech-savvy friend. Maybe you’ve even heard of it while trying to avoid conversation with a tech-savvy friend as they try, almost aggressively, to fill you in on the most recent developments.
Regardless of how you’ve come to hear of fiber-optic internet, chances are you’re wondering what all the fuss is about. We’ll fill you in (and we promise to keep it short and sweet).
Why Should You Care?
Fiber-optic internet providers offer speeds 117% faster than that of DSL and cable (during peak times). That is mind-shatteringly fast. No matter what your aptitude for technology is, you know that’s fast. Downloads and uploads can be made in the blink of an eye. Let’s put it this way – it’s so fast, you’ll forget there was ever a time you had to wait.
Fiber-optic internet cables are made of glass or plastic, making them more efficient and eco-friendly than their copper-based ancestors.
How Does it Work
Copper cables (used for cable/DSL internet), are subjected to electromagnetic interference as electricity is passed along its length. The glass or plastic cables used to provide
fiber-optic internet is less susceptible to interference and passes along light (as opposed to electricity). Transmitting light allows much more data to be passed along at once and loses less energy in the process.
How Do You Get It?
Therein lies the problem. In 2012, only 23% of Americans had access to fiber-optic internet. This would be more of a bummer if expansion wasn’t happening so fast. It’s only natural that businesses looking to compete with each other will seek out the best new technology to get ahead. Fiber optic is in high demand from coast to coast. The only real obstacle to its expansion is the logistics of implementing such a major widespread change. We didn’t get the internet coverage we have now overnight.
Despite this obstacle fiber-optic internet providers have been speeding forward, gaining the necessary permissions and resources to make nation-wide coverage a reality. So, for now, the most you can do is check to see if you have access to fiber-optic internet. If not, you’re always welcome onboard the bandwagon of tech aficionados anxiously drooling over the latest articles and updates.
Anderson, Duane. “Fiber-Optic Internet In the United States at a Glance.” Broadband Now. Broadband Now, 23 Feb. 2015. Web. Accessed 12 Apr. 2016. <http://broadbandnow.com/Fiber>.