What is the Difference Between Broadband and WiFi?

Feb 16, 2022

Broadband and WiFi are terms that are often used interchangeably, but there are some key differences between them that you should be aware of.

What is Broadband?

Broadband refers to wide bandwidth data transmission. Basically, broadband is the pass way or tunnel that allows data to move between your devices and your network e.g. the internet. It is the actual internet connection that your modem/router uses to send and receive data from your property to the digital world.

According to Uswitch, "Broadband is the most popular internet connection in the UK and is used by millions of people across the country."

Most broadband services are delivered to your home via a fixed line, although some new broadband services can operate without a line. This is called wireless broadband and should not be confused with WiFi. We will discuss this in more detail below.

What are the Different Types of Broadband Technology?

There are various types of broadband connections that aim to offer high-speed internet to their users. Here are some of the most popular types of broadband technology available:

ADSL (Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line)

This is the most commonly available type of broadband. It is delivered to your property through the copper wires in your phone line. Broadband speeds will be affected by how far you live from the telephone exchange and ADSL cannot offer superfast internet speeds.

Fibre Optic

Fibre optic delivers broadband through optic cables made from glass or plastic. It offers much faster internet speeds than ADSL and can either be FTTC or FTTP - we will discuss these in more detail below.


Cable broadband technology uses fibre optic cables to deliver high-speed broadband services directly to homes and businesses. Unlike with ADSL, speeds are not lost with distance from the telephone exchange.

Mobile Broadband

Mobile broadband technology works with Internet-enabled mobile devices such as portable and wireless modems, smartphones, and laptops. It connects your devices to broadband services using 3G, 4G and 5G networks and you can then access the internet from anywhere, as long as you have a mobile signal. Mobile broadband is a good alternative to fixed-line broadband if you need to use the internet on the go and are a light internet user.

How does WiFi work?

WiFi is a wireless connection in your house or business that connects your electronic devices to your modem/router so that you can use the internet. It uses radio frequencies and signals to receive and send information wirelessly between two devices without using a cable. WiFi is basically a method of accessing the broadband supplied by your internet provider.

Broadband vs WiFi

Broadband is a type of internet connection that is set up by an internet provider. Wi-Fi is a technology and is one way to connect your devices to broadband and access the internet provided by your internet company.

The main advantage of a Wi-Fi connection is that you can access and share data without needing a wired connection between two devices. Before WiFi was invented, you would need to use a physical cable to connect a device to your internet. Today, your router/modem can connect to your devices using a short-range wireless connection e.g., WiFi.

Have You Considered FTTPs?

FTTP stands for Fibre To The Premises. It delivers internet to your home or business premises directly via fibre optic cables instead of traditional copper cables.

This means that FTTP broadband can offer ultrafast broadband speeds of up to 1000Mbps and it doesn't require a phone line rental like Fibre To The Cabinet (FTTC) or other traditional broadband connections.

FTTC may be sufficient for your commercial requirements and there are lots of affordable internet packages available. However, you may decide to invest in FTTP broadband if it is available in your area. Currently, less than 30% of properties can access FTTP services, but this number is increasing as full-fibre becomes more widespread across the UK.

FTTP broadband offers much faster upload and download speeds which will enhance your online experience and prevent issues like high latency. However, it is not currently available in all areas of the UK.

Get in Touch with Netomnia

Get in touch with the broadband experts at Netomnia if you would more information on the broadband types and their benefits. We will guide you through the different options and let you know what broadband connections are available in your area.