Cable vs DSL vs Fiber Internet

internet providers toronto

When searching for a new internet provider in Toronto, you will definitely start feeling overwhelmed – there are so many options!

What is the difference between DSL, Cable, and Fiber? Between the three, which is the best? Which is the most reliable?

The following guide will help you make the right decision:

DSL Internet

Digital Subscriber Line, better known as DSL uses an existing copper line of a phone line to deliver fast internet access. This type of connection is faster than DSL but slower than cable.

DSL is available in rural and urban areas but the further you are from the mainline the slower your connection and signal will be.

The best internet speed you can get from a DSL connection is 6Mbps and upload speeds of 640Kbps. This connection suits the needs of low volume internet users.

Cable Internet

This type of connection uses the existing cable lines (the TV coaxial cable) to support high-speed internet connections to homes and businesses.

Cable internet is readily available in urban areas. It’s different to DSL in the sense that the distance from the source doesn’t affect your speed and signal.

Cable internet is more reliable than DSL internet with download speeds ranging from 20 to 100 Mbps.

The only negative about cable internet is it’s a shared bandwidth connection.

Fiber Optic Internet

Fiber optic internet or FTTN is a type of connection that is carried by modulated light through an optic cable.

The cables are thin, like human hair, but carry information reliably even over long distances. The installation process of FTTN is complicated and more involved.

Fiber optic internet is super reliable and will not go down even during a power outage or during any other disruptive situation.

This makes FTTN a good choice for those who can’t stay without internet. This connection doesn't experience interferences from high-voltage power lines or electrical items.

No other type of connection comes close to FTTN with download speeds ranging from 10Mbps to 10gbps. This connection is only installed for your use, meaning that it’s dedicated and not shared with other users.

Also. FTTN connections have a symmetrical connection, where the download and upload speeds occur concurrently with no speed reduction.

A fiber internet connection offers true unlimited download bandwidth with no caps. This is the only type of connection that allows providers to guarantee high levels of performance and uptime.

The downside of FTTN is its cost, it’s more expensive than cable and with most connections, you will experience a dry loop fee – however, this depends on your location.

The Verdict

Choosing your internet depends on how much you’re willing to spend and the purpose of the connection. If you use internet casually or not willing to spend a lot, DSL is the best choice for you. If you need stable and lightning fast internet, Fiber internet is your best choice.

The 2 best ISPs in Toronto are Altima Telecom and GTA Telecom.  Check their websites to get more information on internet costs and choices.