If you’re a regular reader of our blog, you’ve heard us praising fiber for its “futureproof” technology. We’re confident that fiber will keep us connected for years to come, and that’s why we’re expanding our fiber networks in the communities we serve. But what exactly do we mean when we say fiber is futureproof?
1. Bandwidth and speed to accommodate growth
As the Internet of Things (IoT) continues to grow and we introduce new devices to our homes and offices, we’re adding to the demands placed on our networks. Each new smart device, video call, and download increases the data our systems are transmitting. Fiber provides symmetrical speeds, so users are able to upload and download at the same speed. While copper cable is limited in its ability to meet these demands, fiber has the bandwidth to meet capacity hundreds of times higher than what our current needs are – meaning we won’t need to continue to upgrade the cables, even as our needs increase.
2. Consistent reliability without slowdowns
Now, more than ever before, we’ve come to rely on the ability to utilize technology to stay connected. For remote school and work, telehealth needs, and communication with friends and loved ones, we all have certain expectations that – with a few exceptions – we will have the opportunity to access the technology we need, when and where we need it. While copper wires can become overloaded when traffic is high, fiber has the capacity to transmit higher levels of data consistently without any slowdowns.
3. Security to protect against advanced threats
As technology advances, so do the threats aimed at taking advantage of weak points in our networks. While hackers have developed the ability to tap into the electronic signals put out by copper cables, these types of security breaches are much more difficult with fiber cables, which are glass and therefore don’t generate the energy that opens copper up to interference. Even if fiber cables are compromised, trouble spots are able to be identified and repaired quickly because broken cables emit a light that makes them easily recognizable.
4. Infrastructure that stands up to breaking down
Another benefit of glass cables is that they’re not susceptible to physical interference like power surges that can damage cables and interrupt connectivity. Even though fiber transmits information across dozens of hair-thin fiber optic glass cables, fiber cables are much more durable than their copper predecessors. In fact, while copper can handle up to 25 pounds of pressure, fiber is capable of withstanding up to 200 pounds of pressure. This means it’s far less likely to be damaged during routine maintenance and has a longer lifespan.
For a deeper dive into Fiber Technology,
check out our Fiber 101 Video