Before you can understand the question of how does wireless Internet work, you must first gain an understanding of the wired Internet that the wireless Internet ultimately connects to. Confusion does exist, with many people believing that different types of Internet can’t communicate with each other. This myth originated with the early use of mobile only versions of company websites that cell phones were shown. Regardless of your Internet connection method, know that the mobile broadband service you are paying for does connect you to the actual Internet.
What Is The Internet?
The Internet is a vast, interwoven web of computer networks. When one computer is connected to another, they become a network. Millions of these small networks exist all over the world. When these small networks became linked together to form larger networks, the Internet was born. All of these computers speak a universal language that we refer to as packets. These packets are carried as electronic signals through copper or fiber-optic wire, allowing communication between computers. The packets are translated into a language that humans can understand by the computer that last encounters the packet signal.
When The Net Becomes Wireless
Internet uses who wonder how does wireless Internet work need to understand that every type of wireless Internet is physically plugged in to the wired Internet at some point. When the Internet you are accessing is not directly plugged into the Internet from the device you are using, you are accessing a wireless version of the Internet.
How your wireless Internet works depends on the method in which the wireless signal reaches your device. As a general rule, the more steps between you and the wired connection, the more complicated the explanation of how does wireless Internet work becomes.
In-Home Wireless Internet
When the wired connection follows various wires and physically enters your home, the packets that it carries are sent through a translation device known as a modem. When the modem is plugged into your computer, the packets appear as websites on your monitor. However, when the modem is first plugged in to a wireless router, the signal becomes split, with part of the signal becoming a short-range radio frequency that your wireless devices can access, and part of the signal continuing along the wire to the computer.
Wireless Internet Access
The wireless Internet functions in much the same way as the in-home wireless Internet does. The wired Internet service arrives at a business or public place and is translated into a wireless service through routers. The business has decided to provide the community service of wireless Internet access by leaving their network without a password and free for customers to use within the vicinity.
Radio Frequency Internet
True wireless users will wonder how does wireless Internet work when their access point doesn’t become a wireless signal locally. The majority of mobile broadband service users get their wireless Internet in the form of radio frequencies. Subscribers to this radio frequency service have a small box installed on the exterior of their homes. This box accesses radio frequencies from the public spectrum, sending packets of information from your computer to the radio tower. This radio tower bounces your signal to the next tower, and on to the next, until it reaches the tower that is wired in to the Internet.
Cell phones likewise operate on this tower-to-tower design, with both Internet and cellular signals relying on a direct line of sight with at least one tower in order to function properly. When you use your cell phone as a mobile hotspot, the phone functions as a private router for nearby wireless devices. You may likewise purchase mobile broadband service from your cell phone company and access the radio frequencies without the aid of a cell phone.
The final explanation of how does wireless Internet work involves a mobile broadband service that is satellite based. Your satellite Internet originates from a location that is physically wired to the Internet. The packets of information are coded into a satellite-friendly language and broadcast into space. The satellite in orbit captures these signals and relays them back to the planet in your direction. A satellite dish near your home captures these waves, while a modem translates them from satellite to computer language before reaching your wireless devices.