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DSL Internet Service

Digital subscriber line (DSL) is a family of technologies that are used to transmit digital data over telephone lines. In telecommunications marketing, the term DSL is widely understood to mean asymmetric digital subscriber line (ADSL), the most commonly installed DSL technology, for Internet access.

DSL service can be delivered simultaneously with wired telephone service on the same telephone line. This is possible because DSL uses higher frequency bands for data. On the customer premises, a DSL filter on each non-DSL outlet blocks any high-frequency interference to enable simultaneous use of the voice and DSL services.

The bit rate of consumer DSL services typically ranges from 256 kbit/s to over 100 Mbit/s in the direction to the customer (downstream), depending on DSL technology, line conditions, and service-level implementation. Bit rates of 1 Gbit/s have been reached in trials, but most homes are likely to be limited to 500-800 Mbit/s. In ADSL, the data throughput in the upstream direction (the direction to the service provider) is lower, hence the designation of asymmetric service. In symmetric digital subscriber line (SDSL) services, the downstream and upstream data rates are equal.

The state of Arkansas has a total of 37 Internet providers available. It is the 48th state, with 92% of the population having access to broadband speeds of 25 Mbps or more.The largest metro, Little Rock, sees average speeds of 14 Mbps, followed by Fort Smith with speeds of 18 Mbps. These speeds are above the state average of 9 Mbps.

Researchers at Bell Labs have reached speeds of 10 Gbit/s, while delivering 1 Gbit/s symmetrical broadband access services using traditional copper telephone lines. These higher speeds are lab results, however a 2012 survey found that “DSL continues to be the dominant technology for broadband access” with 365.1 million subscribers worldwide.

Broadband delivered using digital subscriber lines (DSL) is very popular in the United States. With over 500 different providers offering DSL Internet service, it is available to 90% of Americans. Chances are you have at least one DSL Internet provider in your area.

DSL uses existing phone lines to deliver high-speed Internet to homes and businesses. DSL Internet is NOT dial-up. Although it uses the same wires and jacks as your phone system, you don’t have to dial out to use it and it won’t tie up your phone line. DSL runs on an entirely different frequency than a voice phone call. It can be up to ten times faster than dial-up Internet.

Interesting Facts about DSL

Available in 90% of the country

500+ Providers

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  • DSL broadband Internet service is generally more affordable than cable or fiber Internet
  • DSL is available in all 50 states with coverage of 90% of the population.


  • While DSL can provide enough speed for most Internet users, it cannot reach speeds as fast as cable or fiber. DSL speeds usually top out at about 50 Mbps.
  • The upload speeds on DSL providers is usually very low.

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