How T1 Works in Rural Areas
Here's why you can get T1 telephone
and Internet service most anywhere in the USA.
T1 dedicated voice and data lines are available
just about everywhere in the U.S. That may come as a surprise
if you run a ranch or farm, or are just located in a more rural
area and have tried to get DSL, cable or wireless Internet service.
The oldest digital technology is also the most prolific.
The reason for this goes back to why T1
line service was invented in the first place. In the beginning
it was never intended to be a stand-alone service sold to businesses.
Back in the 1950s telephone companies needed an efficient and
reliable way to carry lots of phone calls between their switching
offices. Bell Labs came up with a standardized digital trunking
system that could carry 24 phone calls on two pair of copper
wires. What's more, these T1 lines could carry phone calls as
far as needed with no loss in quality.
The quality issue is important. If you
remember making long distance phone calls back in the 1950s and
60s, you also remember how noisy they were. Often you could even
hear faint conversations in the background which was called crosstalk.
Such was the nature of analog carrier telephony. Today, all long
distance calls are digitized and it's not unusual for the party
you are talking to on the other side of the ocean to sound like
they are right next door.
The reason this is possible is that digital
signals are made up of numbers consisting of zeros and ones.
When an analog signal degrades over distance, the noise and crosstalk
that are picked up are indistinguishable from the original signal.
The longer it travels and the more amplifiers it gets boosted
through, the more the conversation degrades. Digital signals
degrade too. They pick up noise and crosstalk the same as analog
signals. However, because we know that a digital bit is either
a one or a zero, we can rebuild the noisy signal good as new.
The device that does this is called a regenerative
repeater, sometimes shortened to just repeater or regenerator.
The regenerative repeater is not just a simple amplifier. It
actually rebuilds the signal back to original specifications.
You can't tell by looking if the signal from the regenerator
is the original or an exact duplicate. That's the beauty of digital.
These regenerative repeaters need to be
placed every 6,000 feet or a little over a mile apart. By doing
so, T1 lines can be carried far out into the countryside. You
may get T1 service running perfectly at 1.5 Mbps upload and download
even 20 miles or more from the nearest telephone office.
T1 lines can carry broadband Internet service
or multi-line telephone service. In some areas, the same line
can carry a mixture of the two. Or you can use the broadband
Internet access for VoIP telephone service. Either way, if you
have standard landline telephone service to your location, chances
are that you can also get T1 digital service.
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