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1 Gig Internet: What Is It, Why You Need It & How To Get It

1 Gig Internet_ What Is It, Why You Need It & How To Get It

Staff Writer @ VPN.com

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Have you heard about the newest, fastest internet service – 1 gig internet? With lightning-quick speeds starting at nearly 100 times faster than basic broadband, 1 gig internet takes your web surfing, downloading, and streaming to unprecedented levels. But what exactly is gigabit internet, who needs it, and how can you get your hands on these warp-speed connection speeds? Read on to find out everything you’ve been wanting to know about 1 gig internet.

What Is Gigabit Internet? 

Put simply, one gig internet refers to an internet connection with speeds of at least 1 gigabit per second (or 1 Gbps). This means that with a 1 gigabit internet connection, you can download data at up to 1,000 megabits per second (or 1,000 Mbps). To give you an idea of how fast 1 gig internet is, a standard broadband connection averages download speeds of just 10-25 Mbps. So, a 1 Gbps connection is nearly 100 times faster than basic broadband!

The term “gigabit internet” itself refers to the connection’s speed reaching and surpassing 1 gigabit (or 1,000 megabits) per second. The “gig” part of gigabit stands for “gig” or “billion.” This lightning-fast 1,000 Mbps speed is why the service is called “1 gig internet”.

Who Needs 1 gig Of Internet?

Who needs 1 gig of internet

With internet speeds 100 times faster than average broadband, it’s easy to see why everyone would want 1 gig internet. But the reality is that gigabit-speed internet may be overkill for many basic internet needs. Very few households require the full 1 Gbps capacity available through a gigabit internet connection. 

Still, there are some great reasons to make the upgrade to 1 gig internet, including

  • You have 10 or more connected devices in your household (and most households now have an average of 13 devices!)  
  • You frequently work from home while also streaming TV and music
  • You are a creative professional editing high-resolution photos, videos, or audio content  
  • You regularly upload large files to cloud storage services
  • You often remotely access high-bandwidth services like medical imagery, engineering simulations, etc.
  • You have VR headsets for gaming, video, and more

In summary, if you have an abundance of data needs with many devices connecting at once or handle large files and require super responsive connections, 1 gig internet is perfect for your home or business.

The Benefits Of 1 Gig Internet

The Benefits Of 1 Gig Internet

So how exactly does having 1 gig internet speed benefit you compared to slower broadband connections? Here are some of the biggest perks:

  • Lightning-fast downloading – With 1 Gbps speed, you can download a full HD movie in under 35 seconds. This means no more waiting hours for games, movies, albums, and other large files to download.
  • Ultra HD and 4K streaming – 1 gig internet supports the highest quality Ultra HD and 4K streaming from popular services like Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video, and more. This results in incredibly sharp, stutter-free video even when streaming on multiple devices simultaneously. 
  • Advanced online gaming – For serious gamers, 1 gig internet takes your online gaming to the next level with greater precision and virtually no lag as you play multiplayer games, access game streaming services, or download new titles.
  • Cutting-edge creative projects – Creatives handling super high-resolution source files for photos, videos, CAD models, etc greatly benefit from the hyperfast uploading and downloading enabled by 1 Gbps internet connections. This allows graphic artists, animators, engineers, and other professionals to take their innovative projects even further with enhanced speed and data support capacities. 
  • Smarter homes and businesses – With 1-gigabit internet speed backing up your network, you can seamlessly run multiple real-time applications including video monitoring and conferencing services, voice command AIs, virtual data support efforts, and more both at home and work.

Simply put, 1 gig internet brings unmatched power, performance, precision, and possibilities – allowing you to connect, create, and access a high-speed digital world like never before.

What Can You Use 1 Gig Internet For?  

What can you use 1 gig internet for

A 1 Gbps internet connection completely changes the game of what’s possible in your connected household or business. Here are just some of the incredible ways you can leverage the power of 1 gig internet speeds:

  • Streaming UHD and 8K Video Content  

Thanks to extreme bandwidth and speed, you can stream the highest fidelity video possible in Ultra HD, 4K, and even newly emerging 8K formats across an endless catalog of movies, shows, live events, gaming channels, and other rich media – all without any buffering or quality loss as you move from screen to screen.

  • Gaming Online and In the Cloud

Get in the game with 1 gig internet! Virtually eliminate lag, gain split-second advantages with high-precision game data transfer, and enjoy stutter-free game streaming from services like PlayStation Now, Google Stadia, Xbox Cloud Gaming, and more.  

  • Operating Smart Home Technology 

Give your home a high-IQ makeover powered by AI assistants, smart appliances, interactive security systems, and more that all rely on real-time data transfer across your home’s network.

  • Enhancing Business Productivity

Unleash your business’s potential with high-speed access to cloud computing services, seamless video calls and virtual meetings, instant transfer of large graphic design and engineering files, and so much more.

  • Running a Smart and Connected Office 

Take your office fully high-tech with VR conferencing for remote team members, real-time data analytics dashboards to inform business decisions, rapid cloud data access and backup integrated SaaS platforms to enhance workflows, and more.

  • Engaging in Telehealth Services

Utilize advanced telehealth solutions like full-motion diagnostic video and rapid transmission of MRI, X-ray, and other bioanalytic datasets with your healthcare providers, thanks to robust 1-gigabit data pipelines.

  • Developing Smart Cities

Even the cities and communities we live in can get an IQ boost from 1 gig internet-supporting applications like intelligent traffic coordination, connected transportation, augmented emergency response, remote education and workforce training, precise environmental monitoring, and more.

As you can see, homes and businesses with 1 gig speed unlock nearly endless possibilities for streaming, gaming, smart living, business innovation, telehealth, and building smart communities enabled by instant and unlimited data flow.

Who Offers 1 Gig Internet?

Who offers 1 gig internet

Gigabit internet is still considered an emerging, premium-level internet service with availability currently limited but growing quickly across the United States. Generally, you can access 1 gig internet from one of the following types of internet service providers (ISPs) in select service areas:

Major Cable Providers: Major cable TV and internet providers like Xfinity, Spectrum, Cox, Optimum, and more have recently started expanding gigabit speed offerings to certain high-bandwidth metro area markets in their service regions, with availability growing nationwide each year. These cable-delivered 1 gig services utilize a combination of existing coaxial and new fiber lines.

Specialized Fiber Providers: There are a growing number of specialized fiber internet providers working to equip select towns and cities with 100% fiber optic connections capable of delivering symmetrical 1 Gbps speeds both downstream and upstream. Some examples of these leading fiber companies include Verizon Fios, AT&T Fiber, Metronet, Google Fiber, and more.

Certain Local Broadband ISPs: In addition to major cable companies and national fiber providers rolling out gigabit internet services region-by-region, some local and regional broadband internet companies also offer fiber internet services with 1 Gbps capabilities, though availability is still limited from these providers at present.

To check for the latest status of 1 gig internet services where you live, you’ll have to investigate offerings from the major cable TV/internet providers, fiber ISPs, and local broadband companies serving your area. Availability is increasing rapidly, so be sure to check frequently for new gigabit developments if ultrafast 1 Gbps speeds are not offered in your locale just yet.

What Do You Need To Get 1 Gig Of Internet?  

What do you need to get 1 gig of internet

While service availability is still limited to select areas at this time, key equipment and connection criteria must also be met to enable your home or business to handle 1 gigabit speed from your internet service provider.

Here’s what you’ll need to access blazing fast 1 gig internet:

  1. A fiber connection – To achieve gigabit data flow, your connecting line from the ISP needs to be via 100% fiber optic cabling, rather than standard coaxial cable connections used for most cable internet plans currently. Fiber lines enable unhindered light-speed data transfer meeting the 1 Gbps throughput requirements.
  2. A compatible modem and router – You’ll need high-performance networking gear like an advanced DOCSIS 3.1 modem and WiFi 6e router that each offer multi-gigabit per second data routing with efficient antenna arrays for max wireless coverage across your space 
  3. Multiple ethernet ports – For truly reliable and max speed multi-device connections, go beyond WiFi by connecting devices directly to your router via ethernet cables to key devices like gaming PCs, smart TVs, office workstations, and NAS media storage.
  4. Latest hardware/software – To fully leverage 1 gig capabilities, use newer devices and systems with current specs like WiFi 6/6e connectivity, latest network adapter cards, Cat5e & Cat6 ethernet cabling, operating systems supporting gigabit speeds, HDMI 2.0 compliant 4K TVs and monitors, and enhanced apps and programs built for speed.   
  5. 5. Premium subscription plan – Of course, you’ll need to subscribe to your ISP’s highest-tier gigabit internet plan offering download/upload speeds of at least 1 Gbps to unleash hyperfast surfing, streaming, and more that can fully saturate a 1 gigabit connection.

How Can You Secure Your 1-gigabit Internet?  

How can you secure your 1-gigabit internet

While a 1 Gbps internet connection massively enhances your digital capabilities and performance for streaming shows, gaming online, powering smart homes, and more – such extreme speeds can also intensify vulnerabilities if the proper online security measures are overlooked by subscribers with access to so much bandwidth and data flow.  

To keep your 1 gig internet usage, devices, and network safe while enjoying enhanced speeds, be sure to leverage the following protective measures:

  • Strong network encryption including WPA3 WiFi security protocols and VPN services
  • Enterprise-grade network firewalls – hardware and/or software-based 
  • Advanced threat-detection software protecting endpoints  
  • Strict parental controls filtering inappropriate or malicious content
  • Comprehensive identity protection and monitoring to catch fraud early 
  • Top-rated antivirus and anti-malware tools 
  • Rigorous endpoint patching/updating schedules for known exploit prevention
  • Limited access through device authentication including biometrics
  • Secure IoT device onboarding procedures 
  • Routine password changes across sites/profiles using a trusted manager
  • Ongoing end-user education for identifying the latest digital threats  

Together, these layered defenses will help provide robust protection across your network, endpoints, and usage – enabling your household or organization to tap into all the perks of 1 gig internet with greatly reduced risk. Be sure to also work closely with your ISP and managed IT providers to implement these enterprise-level safeguards if bringing such rich data flow into your environments through new gigabit services.

How Much Does 1 Gig Internet Cost?  

How much does 1 gig internet cost

As an emerging premium-tier broadband service, 1-gigabit internet does come at a higher monthly price relative to mainstream internet packages from providers. However, gigabit plans are becoming increasingly more affordable and accessible over time.

Here is an overview of current pricing ranges for 1 gig internet across top providers:

  • Xfinity 1 Gig Internet: $90-$100+ per month 
  • AT&T Internet 1 Gig: $80-$110 per month
  • Spectrum Gig Service: $125+ per month
  • Verizon Fios Gigabit Connection: $80-$90 per month
  • Cox Gigablast: $120 per month
  • CenturyLink Gigabit Fiber: $65 per month

Some key things to note regarding 1 gig internet plan pricing:

  • Prices can vary across provider service regions
  • Introductory discounts are commonly offered for the first 12-24 months  
  • Bundled TV/Voice packages can lower monthly rates
  • Premium installation fees of around $199-$299 often required 

Considering most households currently pay $50-$80 per month for basic broadband, 1 gig internet plans represent around a 50-100% price increase for exponential speed improvements. However, for the investment over slower packages, subscribers gain dramatically boosted capabilities across streaming, smart homes, business innovation, online gaming, and more.

What Devices Do You Need To Take Advantage Of 1-gigabit Internet?  

What devices do you need to take advantage of 1-gigabit internet

While your outside connectivity lineup may include optimized modems and routers to deliver 1 Gbps speeds into the home or business, you must also upgrade your internal hardware and devices to actually handle, process, and leverage all that inbound data flow now at your fingertips from gigabit connections.  

Key devices to upgrade to meet the demands of 1 gig internet include:

Desktop & Laptop PCs: Look for high-performance network adapter cards within devices, with specs indicating 10/100/1000 GigE speeds or better. For maximum results, invest in the latest desktop models (ex: USB 3.2/C Thunderbolt ports)   

Tablets & Smartphones: Seek out device models highlighting WiFi 6/6e standards for handling fast traffic along with USB 3.2 connectors and phones with 5G cellular access for all your away-from-home usage.

Smart Home Hubs: Upgrade hubs coordinating automation protocols to handle increased network loads alongside any auxiliary management panels, sensors, and devices interfacing frequently with command systems.

Gaming Systems: Level up both your PC gaming rigs and console systems to next-gen models like PS5 and Xbox Series X/S consoles, outfitted with advanced hardware designed specifically for intensely high data, image, and sound processing speeds.   

Smart TVs: Evolve home theaters with the latest TVs compliant with HDMI 2.1 standards enabling handling of 4K 120Hz video signals alongside optimized gaming modes, variable refresh rates (VRR), and auto low latency modes (ALLM). Look for 8K & ATSC 3.0 future readiness as well.  

Network Storage: Add more robust network-attached storage devices like bulkier NAS systems with multi-gigabit outbound speeds for accessing huge media files from around the house without delay.

Boost all of these and other essential endpoint components throughout your digital environments and you’ll be ready to maximize what’s achievable through your new 1 gig internet speeds both today and tomorrow.

What’s The Difference Between Fiber And Cable 1 Gigabit Internet?

What’s the difference between fiber and cable 1 gigabit internet

 While service providers may all advertise offerings for 1-gigabit internet to households, not all gigabit plans are created equally. There are key differences in technology composition and resulting performance when comparing gigabit internet delivered via fiber versus coaxial cable lines. 

Fiber 1-gigabit internet utilizes 100% fiber optic cabling straight to the premises capable of symmetrical speeds in both downloading and uploading with rock-solid reliability thanks to the unsurpassed signal integrity that fiber transmission provides. Also referred to as fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) connections, these plans consistently deliver every bit of their advertised gigabit capacities and beyond.

On the other hand, cable gigabit plans usually involve hybrid coaxial cables joined with some fiber lines to boost overall speeds for what is marketed as a gigabit internet service. However, these primarily coaxial lines cannot fully or reliably support the symmetrical bidirectional throughput that pure fiber connections offer subscribers. So download and upload speeds can still vary greatly.

Simply put – for the absolute fastest, low-latency internet service with equal Gbps power both down and uplink look for true fiber optic delivered options. However, the extended reach of cable broadband will continue improving to meet growing gigabit internet demands using DOCSIS 4.0 standards going forward as well in areas fiber cannot yet reach. So cable providers will at least close the gigabit gap eventually.

Can I Get 1 Gigabit Internet Speed With A VPN?

Can I Get 1 Gigabit Internet Speed With A VPN

As more households and businesses transition to 1 gigabit and even multi-gigabit broadband services, newcomers signing up for such premium-tier plans may wonder if lighting fast VPN connections is still possible after adding encryption through virtual private networking tools – which often slow down lesser broadband tiers noticeably.

Thankfully, 1-gigabit internet subscribers can rejoice in the fact that by starting with such immense baseline throughput speed capacities in place – even resource-intensive security measures like VPN encryption. 

For example, while entry-level VPN products may cut speeds down by as much as 50% or more on basic broadband packages, reducing a 1 Gbps pipe by even 500 Mbps still leaves you with a very healthy 500+ Mbps of bandwidth for outstanding 4K video streaming, large file downloading and high fidelity gaming simultaneously across your network.

More optimized VPN protocols using Wireguard or OpenVPN configurations can lower throughput depletion down to just 10-25% on 1-gigabit service for nearly true gigabit capacities all while enhancing privacy and access controls. So yes, securing your network identity and information is still viable for those unlocking the immense potential of 1 gig internet!

Faster Internet Is Always Good!

Faster Internet Is Always Good!

While 1-gigabit internet offers a massive leap in broadband speeds, data capacities, and digital capabilities compared to mainstream internet plans – we must remember this lightning-fast 1 Gbps pace is just the starting line as our connectivity potentials continue expanding at exponential rates going forward. 

Consumer anticipation is already focused on the next tiers of multi-gig services offering 2.5 Gbps, 5 Gbps, and even 10 Gbps shortly along with emerging WiFi 7 and 5G advancements! All of this mirrors similar seismic boosts in CPU processing prowess, data storage densities, image resolutions, in-device power efficiency, and more across our increasingly interconnected world.

Simply put, faster is always better when it comes to worldwide advances in computing, connectivity, and human ingenuity overall. So bring on internet speeds 100 times quicker than today’s norm just as we celebrate devices 1,000 times smaller, smarter, and more powerful than their predecessors with each passing year. The future is blazingly fast no matter how you connect!

The Bottom Line

In summary, 1-gigabit internet delivers blindingly quick broadband speeds capable of taking our streaming media enjoyment, smart home automation, online gaming, business efficiencies, and digital capabilities to amazing new heights rarely imagined just a few years back.

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