What Is the Function of a Modem

Can you answer, what is the function of a modem? With wireless connectivity on the go and networks set up for you at work, you might be wondering what the answer is as you unpackage this new device from your Internet Service Provider. All modems, whether they are cable modems, DSL modems or old-fashioned dial-up modems, have the same function: to receive an analog signal, translate it into digital information your computer can understand and then encode and send information from your computer back over the Internet.

Cable And DSL Modems
The most common types of modems in households today are cable and DSL modems. A cable modem takes the analog signal sent over your cable television service's lines while a DSL modem does the same thing over the phone line. Which service is best for you depends on your needs and where you live, but the modems essentially serve the same purpose.

Modems And Routers
Some modems today double as wireless routers, but this additional functionality is not an inherent part of all modems. With this capability, the modem can send signals wirelessly to computers on the network it hosts within the range of that modem. If your modem does not have this feature, you can easily purchase a wireless router separately, plug it into the modem and achieve the same thing. By setting up a wireless network, your modem can be put in a less noticeable part of your home, and, as long as it is always on, you can nearly forget about it.

Modem Security
Modem security can be an issue for some people, especially if they leave their modems on for a continuous connection to the Internet. However, many modems have built-in security software to protect your home computer from invasion. Using a router will enhance your security, as will shifting to a less popular but highly secure operating system like Linux.

Related Life123 Articles

What does "modem" stand for? "Modem" means "modulator demodulator," and a modem acts as a translator so that signals from the Internet and your computer can travel over phone lines.

How does a modem work? A modem, or "modulator/demodulator," allows your computer to send digital information over a phone line, and modern modems can now send the same information over cable lines.

Frequently Asked Questions on Ask.com
More Related Life123 Articles

What is a computer modem? A modem on another computer translates digital data into an analog signal, and then the modem on your computer re-translates the signal into a digital format.

What is the purpose of a modem? This little piece of technology is vital in today's connected world, but how much do you know about this device that sends messages from one computer to another?

How does a cable modem work? A cable modem speeds up your Internet because it sends and receives data over a cable line instead of your phone line.

© 2014 Life123, Inc. All rights reserved. An IAC Company