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An Introduction To Wireless Broadband

Jun 2, 2008
Wireless broadband is a general term used for the technology that is able to gain access to the internet wirelessly, and at high bandwidth speeds. Wireless broadband is available on virtually any digital device, so long as it has the proper connectivity hardware. Such hardware can easily be attached to most PDAs and laptop computers.

There are two types of wireless connections for your home. The first is Wireless Networking. This is a type of LAN which doesn't require the use of hubs to connect everyone to the same network. It's useful in houses where there's more than one desktop PC, and perhaps a laptop or two as well, as you don't need wires trailing all over the place. Wireless networking works by having a single central router that receives the signal from the telephone line and transmits a signal which is picked up by the closest wireless devices such as your home computers.

This is how it works. First, the broadband Internet connection is plugged into a wireless router - basically, a small, cheap computer that does nothing except acting as the hub of your network. You then fit wireless cards into each one of your computers, either by opening them up and putting it inside or by plugging it in using a cable (such as USB) or a port (like laptops' PCMCIA).

Wireless broadband can be seen as an extension of standard broadband. The provider sets up your regular service through your phone line, but also sets you up for access at special WiFi points outside the home. Similar idea to an internet caf, except you can use your own laptop and settings, and you can find them in places like motorway service stations, airports, train stations, and any other places that travellers frequent.

Wireless broadband access is usually no slower than plugging the modem in directly, unless you have very cheap wireless equipment and a very fast Internet connection. It also gives you the added advantage that your computers will be networked together wirelessly, too - so you can easily make your folders shared and access them from any computer in your house using 'My Network Places'.
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