If you're like most people, you probably use the internet for a variety of activities every day. Whether you're checking your email, streaming your favorite TV show, or sharing photos with friends and family, the internet has become an essential part of our daily lives.
And as more and more devices in our homes are connected to the internet — from smartphones and laptops to smart TVs and security systems — we need a fast and reliable connection to keep up with our online activities.
That's where multi-gigabit (or "multi-gig") internet comes in. Is it fiber internet? Does it really offer faster speeds than normal internet plans? What is the upload and download speed look like?
We answer all this and more below.
Multi-gigabit internet, also known as "multi-gig" internet, is a type of broadband internet that offers speeds up to 10 times faster than traditional home internet plans.
Most people are familiar with the common home internet speeds: 25 Mbps, 50 Mbps, 100 Mbps, etc. These speed tiers are based on the maximum download and upload speeds you can get with each plan.
Multi-gigabit internet plans offer much higher speeds – anything greater than 1Gbps is considered multi-gig speeds. That means you can download a full HD movie in just a few seconds, stream 4K video without any buffering issues, and even connect multiple devices to the internet at the same time without slowing down your connection.
Of course, these faster speeds come with a higher price tag than traditional home internet plans. But if you need the fastest possible internet speeds throughout the home for gaming, streaming, working from home, or any other online activity, multi-gigabit internet is the way to go.
Multi-gigabit internet can be delivered over either a fiber optic or copper wire network.
Fiber optic networks are made up of thin glass or plastic strands that transmit data using pulses of light. They're typically much faster and more reliable than copper wire networks, which use electrical signals to transmit data.
That's why fiber optic networks are often used for delivering high-speed internet, cable TV, and phone services. They can handle large amounts of data at once without any degradation in signal quality.
However, fiber optic networks are not always available in every area. That's where copper wire networks come in.
Copper wire networks use traditional telephone lines to deliver broadband internet speeds. While they're not as fast as fiber optic networks, they're still much faster than traditional home internet plans.
Since copper wire networks are more widely available than fiber optic networks, they're a good option for people who live in rural or suburban areas.
Now that you know what multi-gigabit internet is, let's take a look at some of the benefits of upgrading to a multi-gig internet plan.
As we mentioned before, one of the biggest benefits of multi-gigabit internet is the increased speed and reliability. With multi-gig Wi-Fi speeds being up to 10 times faster than traditional home internet plans, you'll be able to do everything from streaming 4K video to downloading large files in a matter of seconds.
If you're a serious online gamer, then you know that a fast and reliable connection is essential for the best gaming experience.
With multi-gigabit internet speeds, you'll be able to play the newest online games without any lag or connection issues.
Another benefit of multi-gigabit internet is the increased upload and download speeds. With traditional home internet plans, you typically get much slower upload speeds than download speeds. But with a multi-gigabit internet plan, you'll get symmetrical speeds – that means you'll enjoy the same fast speeds for both uploading and downloading files.
If you have a lot of devices that need to be connected to the internet, then a multi-gigabit internet plan is a good option. With speeds of up to 10 Gbps, you'll be able to connect multiple devices at the same time without any slowdown in your connection.
Most home internet plans have data caps that limit how much data you can use each month. But with a multi-gigabit internet plan, you'll be able to use as much data as you want without having to worry about exceeding your data limit.
Another common question about multi-gigabit internet is whether or not it requires special equipment. These are some of the specialized equipment you might need:
A home router is a device that connects your devices to the internet. Most home routers have four Gigabit Ethernet ports, which are needed for connecting to a multi-gigabit internet connection. In order to support these true multi-gig speeds, you will need a Multi-gig Ethernet or 2.5 Multi-Gig Ethernet Port.
If you want to take advantage of the new Wi-Fi 6E or WiFI 6 standard, you'll need a multi-gig WiFi 6E gateway or router. The new standard offers speeds up to 10 Gbps and is backward compatible with older WiFi standards.
Xfinity is one of the biggest providers of multi-gigabit internet speeds. They offer plans with speeds up to 2 Gbps in select areas. Xfinity delivers multi-gig symmetrical speeds over the connection - meaning you can download files at lightning-fast speeds as well as upload files within seconds. Xfinity's internet is also super reliable, as Comcast engineers can reliably maintain and troubleshoot the network remotely, making their network even smarter and faster.
Its multi-gig service is available in 34 cities and towns, including Panama City Beach and is currently underway in Colorado Springs. Xfinity is extending new multi-gigabit network speeds to more and more places, hopefully reaching 50 million homes and businesses by the end of 2025 - the fastest-ever multi-gig deployment.
AT&T Fiber is another provider of multi-gigabit internet speeds. They offer plans with speeds up to 5 Gbps in select areas. Home networks and businesses with a new multi-gig capable gateway or router can now take full advantage of the benefits that a 10 Gigabit Ethernet LAN connection provides.
Google Fiber is a provider of fiber optic internet service with plans that offer speeds up to 2 Gbps. You will get symmetrical speeds over the connection already installed for your whole-home wi-fi. Google Fiber is aiming at replacing traditional analog network appliances by the biggest rollout of multi-gig deployment in the United States.
If you're interested in upgrading to a multi-gigabit internet connection, the first thing you need to do is check availability in your area.
Multi-gigabit internet speeds are currently available in select areas from major providers like Comcast Xfinity, AT&T Fiber, and Google Fiber. Availability will continue to expand to more areas in the coming months and years.
To find out if multi-gigabit internet is available in your area, enter your zip code into our home page.
We'll show you all the TV, internet, and home security service providers available in your area – including providers of multi-gigabit internet speeds.
Do you want an internet plan delivering ultra-fast Wi-Fi speeds for businesses or homes?
Do you want an internet connection that has an upload and download capacity offering measured in seconds?
Does the sound of faster upload speeds on your ethernet network make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside?
If you've answered yes to all those questions, then you need multi-gig internet -a combination of speed, power and reliability.
With the nationwide rollout of multi-gig internet coming soon in the United States, tens of millions of homes and businesses will soon be equipped with super fast speeds and reliable internet throughout the home.
Browse our list of providers to see the best multi-gig internet deals in your area.