Table of contents
- Tier 1 Companies
- Tier 2 and Tier 3 Companies
- Speed Variations in the Internet
- Data Security
- Breakage of Cables
In today’s era, an individual can stay 3 hours without water or food. But the Internet? Can you stay without the Internet even for 30 minutes? No! Even though the Internet is a young technology, it has become a necessity these days. Every working individual today needs the Internet to get their work done. The Internet lets you transfer any kind of information around the globe in no time. But how the Internet really works? In this essay I’m going to answer for all the confusions and myths, regarding the Internet.
Ninety-nine percent of the Internet in this world is powered by fiber optic cables. Basically, the Internet reaches the device, in the absence of cables, using the 3-Tier System.
Tier 1 Companies
Initially the optical fibers are used to connect the countries. This is done by putting the optical fiber in the oceans and seas all around the world. These optical cables which are also known as the submarine cables are spread throughout the world inside the oceans and are then bifurcated state-wise. The optical fiber cable or the submarine cable is a cable laid on the sea-bed between land-based stations to carry telecommunication signals across stretches of ocean and sea. These cables are laid into the sea bed with the help of special cable layer ships. Today almost 99% of the data traffic carried by these cables are carried out under the sea. The optical fiber has hair line size wires each of which contains about 100 Gbps speed. These cables have a carrying capacity in terabits per second. The reason satellites are not chosen over optical fiber cables is that the satellite can carry only 1000 megabits per second with higher latency. Hence even though the submarine cables cost several hundred million dollars to construct, it is preferred over satellite connections.
The company that installs these cables into the water are known as the Tier 1 company. For example, Tata Communication is one such company that has installed optical fiber cables in the ocean. Reliance Jio has installed submarine cables between Asia, Africa and Europe.
Tier 2 and Tier 3 Companies
The Tier 2 companies take the Internet connection from Tier 1 companies in Gbps giving some amount and then these connections reach till our homes by the Internet service providers which are known as the Tier 3 companies which pays a bigger amount to the Tier 2 companies. Hence, the Internet is free, but the charges are taken because the installation and maintenance process costs a huge amount of money.
Taking the process further, the Tier 2 companies further install various towers in the country at specific distances to take the connection from oceans to every state of the country. For example, a company has installed one such tower with 100GBps bandwidth in your area. So, everyone in your area is using this connection to use the Internet and hence the bandwidth gets divided. So, if we consider 20Mbps speed, 5 people can use the 100Gbps bandwidth.
Speed Variations in the Internet
Considering the speed of the Internet, the speed is divided area wise as described before. But the second that should be taken into consideration is the server. For example, you are accessing amazon.com in India. Now they have a server installed in Bangalore which lets you access the website directly from India without any kind of data passage from the submarine cable even though its main server is in the US. Similarly, big companies like Google Flipkart, etc. have their servers installed in several countries for faster access of their websites. Now if you are accessing a website using a proxy server, then it might take longer for the website to load as the data is passed from your country to its server’s company and is then transferred back to your device.
A server in your country keeps your data safe. India has a neutral Internet access point called NIXI (National Internet Access of India) where the server is manufactured and installed in India itself. In this way, the personal information of Indians like Aadhar card data is stored in India without any data being transmitted through submarine cables to other countries. Such companies are formed through the cooperation of Tier 2 and Tier 3 companies.
Breakage of Cables
There is a possibility that the cables installed in the sea might get broken due to natural events or the fishing trawlers. Hence store stations are located to detect break in the cables by electrical measurements like SSTDR. It can detect a fault in about 20ms. Once a cable damage is located, a cable repair ship is sent to the location. Next the submersible is sent to the location inside the sea and hence the cable is fixed.
Concluding the Internet working, first the optical fibers are installed into the sea beds by the Tier 1 companies which are then distributed into states and your doorstep by tier 2 and tier 3 companies respectively.