Fiber optics is a technology for communicating data via pulses of light. The light pulses are transmitted over a cable made of many optical fibers, which are thin strands of glass or plastic. Fiber optics provide greater transmission capacity than copper wire or radio waves.

TIME TO DOWNLOAD A TWO-HOUR DVD

• Dial-up modem:  20,000 minutes.

• Basic DSL (3 megabits per second):   267 minutes

• Higher-speed DSL (6 megabits per second): 133 minutes

• Optical fiber (100 megabits per second):  8 minutes.

Source: Information Technology and Innovation Foundation