Broadband or Wi-Fi: Do You Know The Difference?

Date Aug 6, 2020
Blog category Broadband
By Sieg C
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Believe it or not, there’s actually a difference between broadband and wi-fi – and it’s by a huge margin! 

With the development of internet technology over the years, it’s easy to mistake these two terms, as they’re used almost synonymously. Without knowing what they really mean, you may have been blaming the wrong one whenever your internet connection has slowed down or when you’ve had troubles connecting wirelessly.

If you’re still confused about how they are different, fret not – it’s not just you! That’s why we’re here to address the differences between broadband and wi-fi. Read on to find out more.

What is broadband?

Broadband enables you to connect to the internet either wired or wirelessly. A common misconception is that broadband can only connect devices using a wired connection from your router  – also known as a cable modem. While this is correct, there are still other ways that broadband can connect you to the internet.

Other broadband connections include digital subscriber lines (DSL), fibre optics, broadband over powerlines (BPL), satellite, and wireless. With the demand for on-the-go broadband, you can also connect to the internet through the mobile data on your phone.

If you want to connect wirelessly to the internet, that’s where wi-fi comes in.

What is wi-fi?

Wi-fi is a technology that allows you to connect your devices without the presence of wires. As this enables you to connect wirelessly, it’s often used as the generic term for wireless broadband connection. Wi-fi often comes with a router to direct signals around the home.

To make things less confusing, wi-fi is just a pathway so that you can connect wirelessly. The wi-fi technology in your modem is what enables it to blast signals throughout your home, and the same technology in your devices is what enables them to receive these signals. 

During its early stage, you needed special hardware for the router and devices to be equipped with wi-fi. Now, it comes built-in, thanks to the improvements of internet technology.

Do NZ providers offer wi-fi connectivity?

In this day and age, you don’t have to worry if the modem that comes with your broadband plan has wi-fi capability. Broadband providers in NZ make sure that you can use the internet whichever way you want. Whether you’re purchasing a broadband plan in rural or urban areas, wi-fi can be used to connect to your different devices wirelessly.

The speed of your wi-fi connection depends on plenty of factors; but ultimately, it comes down to getting the best broadband plan in your area. If you want a guaranteed fast and reliable broadband connection, use our broadband comparison tool here at glimp!

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Matthew Symmons , 2021-12-04

Both the highlighted deals i clicked through to get turned out to be inaccurate speeds. Glimp saying 300/100 both providers only offering 100/20 for the price given, despite giving the same address in both sites. still giving 3 stars though as regardless the deals through Glimp are better than the standard advertised deals on the providers site.

Leah Te Rangi , 2021-09-28

Sign up didn't go quite the way it was meant to. But Kate called and she walked through everything so we could work out what went wrong. she was patient, friendly, supportive and kept me calm to finally get plan registration sorted ( still can't log in though - she must be magic )

Tara Davis , 2021-09-28

Found it really easy to find what i needed and also got a call regarding what deals might be best suited etc. Saves a lot of time. Highly reccommend glimp