What is broadband?
The term “broadband” refers to high-speed Internet service with download speeds of at least 25 megabits per second (Mbps) and upload speeds of at least 3 Mbps. Broadband speeds allow users to more online (and do things faster) than is possible with slower connections, such as dial-up. Broadband Internet can be delivered by several methods, including digital subscriber line (DSL), cable, fiber optics, and satellite. UC2B’s broadband service is delivered at gigabit speeds (1 Gbps = 1,000 Mbps) via fiber-optic cables, which transmits data as light through transparent glass fibers about the diameter of a human hair.
Why does it matter?
For broadband users, it means faster speeds when using the Internet. For Urbana-Champaign, offering gigabit speeds to users means we are at the forefront of broadband in the United States. Our one gig per subscriber means we can encourage economic growth by attracting new businesses and promote the pursuit of educational opportunities both at home and at connected schools and libraries. This also allows the cities of Urbana and Champaign to be self-reliant and work against the traditional model of keeping things such as broadband only accessible to a select few. Our broadband network allows local anchor institutions (such as public libraries and schools) to continue to be vibrant community spaces.
Learn more about broadband outside Urbana-Champaign:
- The Executive Office of the President, “Community Based Broadband Solutions” (downloads PDF)
- Federal Communications Commission, “Removing Barriers to Competitive Community Broadband”
- Gig Communities
- New York Times, “Fast Internet in Chattanooga’s New Locomotive”
- Medium, “How Small Town America is Primed to Beat Silicon Valley in Innovation”
- Benton Foundation, Libraries’ Increasing Role in Broadband Adoption
- Tech Times, Understanding Internet Connection Options, Speeds