In computing, bandwidth is the speed of an Internet connection. It is defined as the volume of digital data that can be transferred from one point to another in a given period of time. It is expressed in megabits per second (Mbps).
The speed at which the Internet users can download files is therefore proportional to the bandwidth available to them. If all Web users connect at the same time to browse or download a movie, for example, the speed will be lower for all users.
There are two types of connection speeds:
- Download speed: the speed of data transfer between the Internet and a user’s device, whether it’s files, websites, photos, music or movies;
- Upload speed: the speed of data transfer between a user’s device and the Internet.
For downloading and uploading data, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) offer various Internet connection speeds at different prices. As a general rule, you have to pay more for a faster connection.
By analogy, bandwidth is to Internet communication what the size of a pipe is to its capacity to carry a large flow of water.