Facts and challenges about rural broadband

Facts and challenges about rural broadband

The transmission of wide data over high-speed Internet access is termed broadband. High-speed Internet access is provided using broadband via various technologies such as optical fibre, cable, wireless, DSL and satellite.

Your connection to the internet is broadband. It offers high-speed Internet as compared to dial-up. 

Rural broadband facts 

Rural broadband simply defines the quality of Internet service in rural areas. Sometimes it is also called rural Internet. Here rural areas mean places settled outside the urban areas. Inhabitants residing in rural areas have to face various problems regarding Internet services. 

Mountains and other terrain act as a hindrance or tonet access. In rural areas, wireless internet service is becoming increasingly common. Here the Internet is delivered by service providers over radio frequency via antennas. 


Rural broadband access is done by following methods:-

  1. Power line Internet
  2. Hybrid access networks 
  3. Satellite Internet 
  4. Terrestrial Wireless Internet  
  5. Mobile Internet
  6. White Space Internet  

Power line Internet

In this technology, data is carried on a conductor that is also used simultaneously for  AC electric power distribution at the same time to consumers.

It is also called power line communication or power line carrier. This type of technology is needed in a wide range for different applications such as home automation.  

A modulated carrier signal to the wiring system is added to operate power line communication. Different frequency bands are used by different types of power line communication. Power distribution systems transmit AC power of 50 or 60 Hz, but power wire circuits have a limited capacity to carry higher frequency signals. So the limiting factor of any type of power line communication is the propagation problem. 

Hybrid access networks

Hybrid access networks is a method of rural broadband access. In this method, two different network technologies are combined to improve bandwidth for broadband access networks. 

One of the main objectives of this network is to provide faster Internet services in rural areas. It is not always cost-effective. It improves the reliability of the access link. Its service turns up is also fast according to which a customer can install hybrid access networks immediately and can use the wireless leg during the installation of the wired part by the network operator. 

Satellite Internet

Communication satellites providing Internet access is one of the most important rural broadband facts. They offer relatively high data speeds. Gateways are the ground stations that propagate Internet data to and fro from the satellite using various techniques. These ground stations serve data to each subscriber with the transceiver or small antennas.  The modem is a device at the user end that connects the user network with the transceiver. So rural people have to purchase modems only and can get rid of rural broadband challenges. 

Terrestrial wireless Internet

Internet services provided by WISP(Wireless internet service provider) with a network based on wireless networking is termed terrestrial wireless internet. WISP proved as a boon for the rural environment where digital subscriber lines and cables are not available. They, with their advanced technology, beat the speed of telephone systems and legacy cables. They build backhauls to the centre of the area where they wish to serve. Backhauls are built at the elevated points in the area, such as radio towers, tall n buildings, water towers or grain silos.

Mobile Internet 

To get rid of rural broadband challenges mobile internet plays a crucial role in accessing worldwide services through mobile and other wireless networks. 

Mobile internet emphasized the idea of accessing the internet through cellular telephone service providers. Mobile internet among other rural broadband facts plays a crucial role in eliminating rural broadband challenges.

White space internet

Parts of the radio spectrum are used in this technology, known as white spaces. These spaces provide rural broadband access similar to that of 4G mobile. They create some range of frequency when gaps are created between television channels. Namibia, Jamaica, the Philippines, Tanzania, Colombia, the United Kingdom, Taiwan, and the United States are some of the countries where Microsoft is advancing White space technology. Cape Town and South Africa are the two where Google has decided to push the white space technology.

Rural Broadband Challenges

Challenges that are raising problems for rural broadband are given below:

Physical Barriers

Hills, mountains, lakes, rivers and forests are the physical barriers for rural areas. These barriers just robust the internet services in rural areas. Power lines and sensitive equipment may get affected in autumn due to leaves falling.

Water acts as a hindrance to wireless frequencies. Natural forests and trees are just beginning interruption of such a type of barrier. Wireless Internet signals may be affected due to the presence of plants on farms. 

Increasing Demand for Telework and Telehealth

Access to telehealth facilities is limited in rural areas. Providing advice online regarding health is a challenging task. This challenge becomes even worse, without high-quality video links. People who work in rural areas have to face a lot of problems due to slow internet or no Internet. 

Nowadays people are more interested in working in rural areas. In research, it is found that 62% of  Americans like working remotely. But the problem they suffer is just a type of rural broadband challenge. In research, it is found that the bandwidth gap in rural areas is worse. 

Limited Company Growth and Resources

Smaller internet service companies have to struggle more in rural areas because they do not have any options. Building more infrastructure seems impossible for them and hence company growth is limited in rural areas.

Low investment is done in rural areas for improving internet service is another kind of hindrance. Broadband internet service provider companies do low investment in rural areas because of lower return on investment and this results in limited growth.

Rural broadband challenges can be solved using the following ways:-

  •  By promoting rural internet access for growth
  •  By enhancing wireless internet service coverage and quality
  •  By increasing the rural business market.
  • Resources and capabilities of the private sector and complimentary providers should be harnessed.
  •  Rural broadband policies should be comprehensive.
  • Policies made should be transparent.


So I have discussed some of the problems that arise due to low broadband in rural areas and how to overcome these problems by following the above-mentioned ways. Overcoming rural broadband problems will also develop rural areas and their people.

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