Last updated on March 18th, 2018 at 04:46 pm
Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) broadband is a type of broadband connectivity to your home or your business via BT telephone (copper) wiring.To get an ADSL broadband connection, first, you need to check the availability of BT lines in your area. Second, you would choose your ADSL broadband internet provider and check the availability of that service provider in your area.
To check the availability of ADSL broadband providers in UK, you can use our UK Postcode checker which also comes with Ofcom approved price comparison engine.
Advantages of copper based, ADSL broadband
- Nation-wide availability
Any household or business in UK can get an ADSL broadband service without any hassle. It’s available to more than 98% of the UK premises.
- Decent speeds
ADSL 2+ broadband, which is advanced copper network that Openreach has built across the UK to cover 99% of the UK, can deliver up to 24Mbps download speed. Factors like network congestion, the distance between premise and exchange and provider’s FUP policy can affect your speeds.
- Improved, real-world speeds
ADSL 2+ broadband is powered by improved network technology which can offer 9Mbps of average real world speed to the UK homes, according to Ofcom broadband speed report for 2017.
- Low cost option for general users
ADSL 2+ is a fixed line broadband which usually cost much less than fibre broadband. If you just need broadband for general online activities such as browsing, emailing, online shopping and social network, getting this kind of package can help you save money.
- Faster downloads and video streaming
With ADSL 2+ broadband which comes with ‘up to’ 17Mbps speed also provides decent speeds that can help make quicker downloads or stream standard videos.
- Switch to fibre broadband
For HD streaming and homes with more than two users, fibre broadband is the right option.
- Latest wireless routers come with pre-configured settings so they will be installed automatically. Engineer aided installation will cost extra.
- Cables will connect your PC, modem, filter and BT phone socket.
- Filter divides the telephone wire so that both voice and data can be transmitted simultaneously. It helps us to use telephone while we will be surfing the net.
How ADSL broadband works?
After you have signed up with your ADSL 2+ broadband provider, your ISP will immediately supply you with a broadband installation kit that includes filter, installation CD, a few cables, and wireless router with built-in ADSL 2+ modem.
If you do not have BT phone lines, you can order new phone line with broadband package.
If you have BT phone lines already, the installation of ADSL broadband would not take much time.
In your local BT exchange, your provider installs a device that allows the same copper wire to carry both voice and data signals in two channels. One channel uses the frequency range of 0 – 20 KHz for voice communication while the other channel uses higher frequency range of 26 KHz – 1 Mhz for transmiting data at faster speed.
At home, you need a filter to split the two signals and get two services together – homephone and broadband. You will connect the phone plug into the slot marked ‘phone’ in the filter while data cable from the modem or router will be connected to other slot marked ‘modem’. Using a router, you can connect more than a computer to an ADSL router to share a single broadband connection.
Types of ADSL Broadband
ADSL 2 and ADSL 2+
ADSL 2 and ADSL 2+ can provide higher speeds (up to 24Mbps) than ADSL. However, maximum speeds can have significant drop and connection becomes unreliable when your home is far away from the exchange.
Very high bit-rate DSL (VDSL)
As the name indicates, this ADSL transfers data at very high speeds. VDSL can provide download speed up to 100Mbps, however, over short distances (only up to 350m from the central office/cabinet). VDSL speeds drop drastically over long distances. It is a developing technology.
In this ADSL version, the DSL splitter is placed at the exchange, instead of user’s place. Speeds are limited.
Rate Adaptive DSL (RADSL)
This ADSL connectivity enables the users to adjust the connection speeds with respect to line quality and distance from the exchange. Software is used for this purpose.
Symmetric Digital Subscriber Line (SDSL)
Symmetric Digital Subscriber Line (SDSL) is not as common as ADSL. It provides equal amount of bandwidth in both upstreams and downstreams. SDSL is mostly used by businesses which need to send and receive large amounts of data, files etc. You may get SDSL services with business ISPs.
SDSL or single line DSL
It is the standard version of symmetric DSL broadband and used widely in businesses. It is also known as Single-pair high-speed Digital Subscriber Line (G.SHDSL).
Speeds are symmetric, slower than standard ADSL (8Mbps), but higher upload speeds (up to 4.5Mbps) can be achieved by using two pair line.
High bit-rate DSL (HDSL)
HDSL provider faster connection speeds than normal SDSL connection, but not used for home broadband connectivity. This technology has been going through improvements over the time.
This symmetric DSL connection can provide both upload and down speeds up to 100Mbps over excellent distance range, however, it is too expensive so the rate of adoption is naturally slow.