Guided Media vs. Unguided Media – Differences & Comparison

Guided Media and Unguided Media are two types of signal transmission tools.

Main Difference

Systems and other communication tools show data in the form of signals. These signals transmit through electromagnetic energy, known as electromagnetic signals, that are the bounding of electric and magnetic fields. In Guided Media, signals are transmitted through a physical source.

On the other hand, there is no need for any medium and unguided media to transmit signals. In detail, let us discuss the main differences between Guided Media and Unguided Media.

What is Guided Media?

A system or any communication device needs signals to represent data. Guided Media means data through signals as it transmits data through a physical medium or source. Guided Media is also known as bounded transmission media or wired communication media. Moreover, it refers directly to signals for transmission. There are many types of Guided Media: Twisted pair cable, fiber optic cable, and coaxial cable.

Furthermore, interference can be produced by releasing adjacent cables in Guided Media. In addition, it is comparatively expensive compared to Unguided media. There is also an option to increase the capacity.


  • Broadcast signals through wires
  • Cost-effective
  • Provides direction for transmission
  • Used for point-to-point communication

What is Unguided Media?

Unguided Media is a signal transmission tool that broadcasts signals without any medium. It transmits signals through an air medium and does not provide any direction to transmit the signals. Communicating devices show data in the form of signals. Unguided Media represented data in the form of signals with no medium. Moreover, it is much expensive. Signals broadcasts in Unguided Media on the far in of electromagnetic waves. Furthermore, it is an unbounded and wireless communication device. Radio links are good examples of Unguided Media.


  • no need for a medium to transmit signals
  • much expensive
  • signals are unbounded
  • signals are wireless
  • medium direction
  • send a signal through a physical medium
  • transmit signals in a specific direction
  • no need for medium
  • transmit signals in all directions

Key Differences between Guided and Unguided Media

  1. In Guided media, there is no need for any physical medium to broadcast signals. On the other hand, Unguided Media does not need a medium to transmit signals.
  2. Guided Media is cost-effective, while Unguided Media is expensive.
  3. Guided Media is bounded transmission media, while Unguided Media is unbounded.
  4. Guided Media is wired communication media, whereas Unguided Media is wireless communication.
  5. Guided Media provides direction, while Unguided Media does not provide supervision.
  6. Guided Media broadcasts signals in specific directions, while Unguided Media transmits signals in all orders.

Comparison table between Guided and Unguided Media

Features Guided media Unguided Media
Transmission media Branded transmission media Unbounded transmission media
communication media wired communication media Wireless communication media
Medium transmit a signal through a physical medium no need for medium
Direction transmit signals in a specific direction Transmit signals in all directions.


In a nutshell, we can say that Guided Media and Unguided Media are different. They are different in their features and func