What’s the difference between Fibre, VDSL, ADSL and Wireless 4G broadband?

When you sign up to 2degrees broadband services you may come across some unfamiliar words and phrases, so here’s a quick breakdown of what’s what in the world of high-speed internet.

What is broadband?

Broadband refers to the technology that makes it possible for large amounts of information to be sent super-speedily and simultaneously between computers or other electronic devices.

Broadband can be described as high-speed internet services delivered by various means including mobile networks, fibre-optic cables, VDSL and ADSL copper lines.

When you sign up to 2degrees broadband services, we’ll provide the best connection for you based on the newest technology available at your address. This may be an ADSL, VDSL, Rural Wireless, or Fibre connection.

Something to keep in the back of your mind is that most broadband connections will be affected by power cuts. So, people with monitored alarms will need to ensure they have a back-up power source.

What is Fibre?

Fibre is the fastest broadband technology in the market. It works by sending light through fibre-optic cables, capable of transferring information much faster than an old-school copper phone line.

To get connected to Fibre broadband, you’ll need to have two small boxes physically installed at your premises – one on the outside wall and one on an interior wall.

Fibre technology is perfect for large downloads, streaming video, or when you have multiple people or devices connected. Plus, if you want to go even faster, try our Ultimate Unlimited Plan which offers speeds of up to 900Mbps download/400Mbps upload.

Who is Fibre for?

If you’re online a lot and stream TV, movies and music or if you’re into gaming, this is the perfect internet connection for you. Fibre offers the best performance for multiple users in the home.

What is VDSL?

VDSL is not as fast as Fibre, but it uses your copper line more efficiently so you can get faster speeds than ADSL. This lets more users share one internet connection, lets you upload large photos or videos quicker, and gives you better HD video streaming capability than ADSL. Depending on your connection, VDSL has the potential to deliver download speeds of up to 70Mbps and upload speeds of up to 10Mbps.

Who is VDSL for?

Ideal for those who want faster broadband but aren't eligible for Fibre. Great for streaming TV, movies and music. 

What is ADSL?

ADSL is the standard broadband service delivered over a traditional home line. It’s easy to connect to but is not very speedy with the national average for download speeds at around 10Mbps.

Who is ADSL for?

Ideally, we will move you to a newer connection type. However, if you have ADSL, it’s fine for when there’s just one or two people using the connection for general web browsing and checking emails.

What is Wireless 4G Broadband?

4G Broadband is delivered over a 4G mobile network. It doesn’t get sent via the old-fashioned copper cables in the ground, but rather, beamed straight to the modem via the 4G network infrastructure used for mobile phones.

Who is Wireless 4G Broadband for?

This connection type is not yet available to all 2degrees customers. Selected customers on poor-performing copper connections have been offered the choice of Wireless Broadband, where we believe it suits their needs.

What is Rural Broadband?

Rural broadband is similar to Wireless 4G Broadband in that the signal is beamed in and you don’t have to wait for a technician to install fibre cables, and you use a similar modem. The difference is that with Rural Broadband we use a mobile network which we’ve collectively built with the other mobile network operators as part of a project called the Rural Connectivity Group (RCG),

The RCG has built and maintains new cell towers in rural areas and far-flung places across the country to connect internet and mobile black spots with 4G goodness.

Who is Rural Broadband for?

If you’re a household or business located in rural New Zealand and cannot get Fibre, Rural Broadband is specifically for you. Please note that Rural Broadband may not be available in all rural areas.

There may be instances where your home set-up isn’t appropriate for Rural Broadband. If you have a monitored medical or security alarm, you should read more about Rural Broadband here.

While we’re learning about all things internet, what is WiFi?

WiFi is not the internet itself, but it does broadcast the internet connection to the WiFi-capable devices you wish to connect. WiFi is radio transmission technology used to wirelessly connect to a router or other access point which in turn provides internet access. WiFi is the wireless connection to the device that connects to the internet.

Read more on how to connect to WiFi.

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