fiber optics
17 March 2017
17 March 2017,

What is fiber optics?

WiFi, move over. Fiber optic internet connections are quickly becoming more and more common in Denver and for good reason. Fiber optics is the greatest, fastest way to send and receive information (including the internet) ever invented. It is said that fiber cables cover over 99 percent of the Internet’s total mileage, and carry over

99 percent of all international communications traffic. In other words, fiber optics is a really big deal! And now the people of Denver can take advantage of the power of fiber optics through companies like Verizon, AT&T, and CenturyLink. If you are deciding which internet provider you should choose, check our homepage where we reviewed 2 best internet service providers in Denver these days.

fiber opticsHow fiber optics works

Fiber optics was originally developed for endoscopes in the 1950s to help doctors see the inside of their patients without having to cut them open first. In the 1960s, engineers found a way to use the same technology to transmit telephone calls at the speed of light (around 122,000 mph). As you can see, fiber optics have been used to accomplish great things for over half a century!

The basic idea behind fiber optics is this: information being carried between two places using entirely optical (light-based) technology.

Information is coded in a beam of light and sent to its destination through a glass pipe. These glass pipes, known as strands, are less than one-tenth as thick as a human hair.

When information is sent from one end of an optical-fiber connection to another, the data which is being sent is turned into light. That light is then sent through the fiber optic cable and comes out on the receiving end. When this data is received in the form of light, a photoelectric cell decodes the light back into electrical data that can be read by a computer.

Now, you may be asking yourself how light could travel down a glass pipe and not leak through the glass.

You probably didn’t know this (I sure didn’t), but due to a phenomenon called total internal reflection, the light traveling through the pipe bounces off the glass walls at such an angle that the beam of light is reflected back into the pipe – much like a mirror. And the smart engineers who developed fiber optic technology took full advantage of this knowledge.

In addition to total internal reflection, the way that fiber optic cables are constructed help play a role in light successfully traveling from one terminal to another.

As the name suggests, the core is the middle part of the cable which the light travels through. The cladding is a layer of glass which is wrapped around the core. The cladding is made of a different type of glass than the core, which is used specifically to keep the light inside of the core.

And now that you know how fiber optics work, let’s talk about the amazing capabilities that are available for you to take advantage of.

Why should you choose this type of connection in Denver?

Fiber-optic cables are now the best way of carrying information over long distances because they have three big advantages over old-style copper cables: less signal loss, no electromagnetic interference, and much larger bandwidth. I’ll explain the benefits of each of these advantages.

First off, less signal loss. Information travels roughly 10 times further with fiber optics before it needs amplifying—which makes fiber networks easier and cheaper to maintain.

The second advantage fiber optic cables have over old-style copper cables is no carrying signals within the rubber wrapping of the cable. Each of these wires produces a magnetic field as it carries a signal. These magnetic fields tend to interfere with another, negatively affecting the data traveling through the cable.

With fiber optics, this problem doesn’t exist. Light travels as data through each individual optical fiber and the fibers have no effect on one another. Signals travel flawlessly from one end to another. Researchers from England found out optical fibers could transfer data at 99.7% of the speed light. Read about it on

Less signal loss and interference are great advantages of fiber optics, however, they’re probably more appealing to someone who operates and maintains the system.

But the advantage of larger bandwidth is what has a lot of people in Denver canceling their existing internet service and switching over to fiber optic.

Bandwidth describes the amount of data that can transfer between you and the Internet. The more bandwidth that your service provider allows the faster and better your connection to the internet will be. Internet service providers will offer varying levels of bandwidth for their fiber optic packages.

To put it into perspective, though, the average WiFi connection in Denver allows for a top speed of 54 MBps bandwidth. However, most of the time, it’s much slower. Cnet brought a few tricks how to speed up your wifi, it’s worth a read. On the other hand, fiber optic connections allow up to 1000 MBps! That means downloading a game, one hundred songs, an HD movie or one hundred photos is up to 20 times faster with a fiber optic connection.

It’s hard to imagine what it would be like to download a 2-hour movie in 4 seconds or a 9-hour audiobook in 1.8 seconds, but it is possible with fiber optics.

Make the switch

So, as you can see, fiber optics is hands down the one of the best internet service there is in Denver. AT&T is advertising fiber optic internet plans starting at a mind-blowing 1000 Mbps for only $80/month. A great value.

Talk to your internet service provider today and see if you can join the thousands of people in Denver who made the switch over to fiber optic internet.

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