DSL or Digital Subscriber Line is one of several technologies used to provide wired access to the Internet. DSL technology provides Internet access via telephone line at speeds higher (from 256 kilobits per second) than those obtained via Dial-up (56 kilobits per second).

DSL consists of several other DSL technologies including but not limited to Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) and Very High Bitrate Digital Subscriber Line (VDSL).

Within Australia the most common forms of DSL used are Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL), Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line 2 (ADSL2) and Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line 2 Plus (ADSL2+).

Figures published by the | Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) show that DSL usage in Australia is growing steadily; from 3,365,000 subscribers in the three month period ending March 2007 to 3,936,000 subscribers in the three month period ending June 2008. Figures recorded for Dial-up in the same period show a drop of 25%.[1]

Data rates achievable by DSL technology:

Technology Downstream Data rate (Theoretical Maximum) in Mbit/s (megsbits per second)
ADSL 8Mbit/s
ADSL2 12Mbit/s
ADSL2+ 24Mbit/s

1. 8153.0 - Internet Activity, Australia, Jun 2008. (2008). Retrieved from http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/8153.0/
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