What do an iPad, HTC One (M8), Samsung smart TV, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, NOW TV box, Macbook Air have in common? Other than the fact they’re all pretty cool?
The answer, of course, is that they’re all severely hobbled – if not entirely useless – without the internet. The web is now important to most people – they need it for work, they need it for play, and they need it to play while pretending to work – and a good connection downright essential.
Standard ADSL broadband will still get the job done, but to get the most out of today’s technology, you need the best broadband possible – in other words superfast fibre optic broadband. Here are five reasons why:
1. It gives you enough bandwidth for all your gadgets
Anyone who’s had lots of things connected to the web simultaneously knows the problems that can arise when you have limited bandwidth. They’re especially pronounced in large households, where everyone online at the same time watching something on Netflix, playing games, downloading large files, using Facebook and what not, resulting in internet slower than an arthritic snail.
Fibre optic broadband doesn’t eliminate the problem, but it does lessen it dramatically; because it’s so much faster, even when speeds drop there will likely still be enough bandwidth to get the job done, whatever it may be.
2. It makes watching films and TV on demand better
Whether you watch stuff on demand on your laptop, on your phone or using an internet-connected TV box like Roku or NOW TV, fibre broadband will improve your sofa surfing.
That’s because when it comes to watching TV and films online, the difference between broadband that comes through copper wire and broadband that comes through fibre optic cable can be startling. Video loads extremely quickly and plays with few – if any – pauses for buffering, even in HD, with fibre optic broadband, while downloading a film can take just a few minutes.
3. If you’re a gamer, it’s basically essential
If you play games – either on a PC or a console – you need fibre. Not for playing the games – you can actually play Call of Duty, Halo or whatever game floats your boat online with a relatively slow connection.
But everything else around gaming demands speed. Updates and patches are now the norm, and they’re getting bigger all the time. Downloadable expansions have also become a central part of gaming. And many gamers download titles now, despite the 25GB-plus file sizes. In short, if you don’t have fibre, you’ll spend a huge chunk of your gaming life waiting to play – and who wants that?
4. It makes social media better
It’s not just download speeds that are improved by fibre optic broadband – upload speeds also generally get a kick up the proverbial. That matters because anytime you back up your files to something like Dropbox or upload a picture or video to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr or even Google+ if you’re one of the three people who actively use it, it’ll be super-speedy.
5. Better browsing, better… everything.
As I said at the start, literally anything that connects to the web and any online activity will benefit from fibre optic broadband. Browsing will be much smoother, for one thing, with pages loading faster and interactive elements running nice and slickly. You’ll be able to multi-task easier, with one thing less likely to slow down another. And, perhaps most importantly, it’s more reliable than standard ADSL broadband – something that’s bound to be appreciated by any gadget junkie.
This entry was written for Central Gadget by Duncan Heaney of mobile, TV and internet experts broadbandchoices.co.uk.