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broadband modem

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Definition: A broadband modem is a type of digital modem used with high-speed DSL or cable Internet service. Cable modems connect a home computer (or network of home computers) to residential cable TV service, while DSL modems connect to residential public telephone service.

Like the television "set top" box, both cable and DSL modems are normally supplied by the Internet service provider and not a piece of equipment individuals need to shop for on their own.

Most broadband modems supply a 10 Mbps Ethernet connection for the home LAN, although broadband Internet services rarely if ever perform at those speeds. The performance of a cable modem can vary depending on the utilization of the shared cable line in that neighborhood, and DSL modem speeds also vary, but typical data rates range anywhere from 500 Kbps to 3500 Kbps.

Also Known As: cable modem, DSL modem

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