Narrowband is another term for dial-up internet access.

It uses a modem to connect with the internet via a phone line – it is slower than broadband and can be expensive. Unlike broadband, which is “always on”, dial up is often charged by the minute, so you may have to limit how long you are online for – although some dial up services do now allow you to pay a fixed amount per month with no extra call charges.

It is much slower than broadband, usually coming in at 57.6kb (the slowest broadband packages start at 512kb). The main drawback for dial up, particularly for a family, is that it monopolises the phone line which cannot then be used for anything else.

Some areas in the UK – which may not even be particularly remote – cannot receive broadband and are still on dial-up. Dial-up speeds can often be improved significantly with an internet accelerator, which reduces the size of each webpage before it downloads to your pc.

By Sarah at UK Broadband Finder
Read my Broadband Glossary disclaimer

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