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highbandHighband is a term often used interchangeably with “broadband”. It’s also a contraction of the phrase “high bandwidth”.

For digital communication, the term “bandwidth” is the amount of data that can be transmitted at any given time over a particular digital channel, for example T1 transmission channel. It is a numerical indicator, measuring how much information or data can be pushed through a data network. For instance, imagine that an Internet connection is a pipeline from a user’s computer to a wide area network of the Internet. Bandwidth is represented by how wide the pipe is. That is the amount of data a user can push through his/her connection at any given time. The data transmission capability of a pipe or channel is indicated by bits per second (bps).

High bandwidth in digital communication is a subjective term. Intuitively speaking, it refers to high data transmission rate over a transmission channel. For example, a user who merely surfs the Internet may think that one megabit per second connection is high bandwidth since it is four times faster than the standard broadband connection – the standard broadband connection is 256 Kbps. In comparison, a user who downloads large files and streams movies considers a 1 Mbps connection as low bandwidth. Mostly, users consider Internet connections of 3 Mbps or greater as high bandwidth. Some cable speeds may reach 20 to 60 Mbps.

The meaning of Highband also fluctuates over time. The reason for this is the advancement of technology.  Today’s high bandwidth (value) will most likely change in the next three to five years. Understanding what high bandwidth is helps a consumer compare the relative performance of various broadband Internet services. A consumer pays for the connectivity when shopping for Internet services. But, what separates the packages is the bandwidth a user can achieve at a certain price range.

To achieve the best streaming results, a highband connection is required. As mentioned previously, this isn’t a firmly defined number. In general though, standard broadband (therefore highband) connections in the UK average around 14.7 Mbps as of May 2013.

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