In the realm Internet Technology ‘networking’ refers to connecting Interfaces / devices (desktops, laptops, tablets and smartphones) are connected to the internet and to each other via modems, routers, gateways, sockets, ADSL, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and switches, so that they can communicate with each other.

‘Connectivity’ is how this is achieved.

Network connectivity is commonly described as ‘the extensive process of connecting various parts of a network to one another, for example, using routers, switches and gateways, and how that process works.’

Network connectivity is becoming increasingly complex. It is also becoming more streamlined and simpler. How is this?

Connectivity devise are categorised into complex and simple.

Complex connectivity:

Complex connectivity devices are used to connect small networks into large ones –the largest network being the internet. They are also used to divide large complex networks into smaller networks or parts, called ‘subnets’, or ‘segments’.

Simple connectivity:

Networks are not only connected through physical devices; they are also connected through apps such as Bluetooth.

Physical hardware and apps can work together for maximum, fast network connectivity. This has enabled the growth of huge IT networks that are not location dependant. Offices across the globe can now be connected in a dedicated network, which is in turn connected to a larger network.

Network connectivity as both process and design:

Connectivity describes both the process of connecting in networks and the connectivity design used. The design used is also called network topology or network models.

Commonly used network connectivity topologies include the ‘hub’, ‘linear’, ‘tree’ and ‘star’ designs.

However, the science of connecting networks is huge, and there are many designs used. Modern devices, such as ‘switches’, combine the capabilities of several connectivity devices into one device. As far as business hardware goes, this ‘neatens’ the physical aspect.

This is in turn complemented by rapid advances in online systems and IT that have made it possible to tailor connectivity for various networks,with not only function in mind, but also security and privacy. 

The Internet of Things

We are rapidly moving into a world where everything is connected, even your fridge. This is commonly called the Internet of Things. This is enabled by 5G technology allowing for unprecedented ‘connectivity in networking’.