The types of UTP cable categories are CAT1, CAT2, CAT3, CAT4, CAT5, CAT5e, CAT6, CAT6a and CAT 7. Each of the unshielded twisted pair cable categories is technically advanced compared to its predecessor.
CAT1 is commonly used as telephone wire and cannot support computer network traffic. CAT2 and more advanced categories include network wire specifications. They support both telephone traffic and computer traffic. CAT 2 is common on token ring networks and supports speeds up to 4 Mbps. CAT5e is one of the most popular UTP cables. It replaced the traditional coaxial cable that was unable to keep up with the need for more reliable and faster networks. UTP cables are popular because of their cost effectiveness and flexibility.