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Difference Between Online and Real-Time Systems

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  • Last Updated : 03 Feb, 2022
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In this technology world, we all are using online systems as well as real-time systems, both of these systems are in use for different tasks but sometimes people are confused between the two so let’s understand these in detail and also have a look at advantages and their limitations.

Online Systems

Online systems are the type of systems that are logged in or connected to the internet, such systems include online gaming platforms, chatting through different social media platforms, etc. A number of applications are available which are online in nature.

Advantages of Online Systems:

  1. Online systems help in making communication possible in the whole world at a faster speed.
  2. Online systems are less costly when compared to real-time systems, anyone can use them with the help of the internet.
  3. Response time is really good in the case of many online systems like booking systems or online shopping sites.
  4. These systems do not have heavy hardware requirements means they can be used with simple hardware resources.

Limitations of Online Systems:

  1. There are times when a large number of data is fetched or either sent to online systems and in such cases, these systems fail to handle that data.
  2. They are not providing in-time information means these systems lag when compared to real-time systems hence these systems cannot be used for high-priority tasks.

Real-Time Systems

Real-time systems are those systems that do not lag and respond instantly. These are different from online systems in the sense that they transform their state with correspondence to real or physical time. 

Advantages of Real-Time Systems:

  1. These are the fastest available systems and hence are used in top priority operations like rocket launching systems, military communications, etc.
  2. The response time of these systems is instant, they don’t lag and provide real-time information or services.
  3. Real-time systems are the foundation of advanced technology in various fields like communication, information retrieval, etc.
  4. These systems are able to handle a huge amount of data.

Limitations of Real-Time Systems:

  1. These systems are expensive so these are not available for use to everybody.
  2. Heavy system requirement to use these systems, these systems need special software and hardware resources.

Difference Between Online and Real-Time Systems

The following table differentiates Online Systems and Real-time systems:


Online System

Real-Time Systems

1.These are the type of systems that works by connecting to the internet to update or share information.These are the systems that are priority-based and include a sense of real physical time to pass information from one system to another.
2.There is some lag in these systems.These are instant without any lag.
3.All online systems are not real-time.All real-time systems are online.
4.It is used for less important functions to achieve.These systems are of high importance so there are limits on latency.
5.Online systems are made for general purposes like communication, gaming, etc.These are made for specific purposes like systems used in defense and national securities.
6.System implementation is simple and can be easily designed.System implementation is complex and designing such systems is a difficult task.
7.The performance of such systems is low.The performance of such systems is high.
8.Sending an email is an example of the online system.Automatic electronic systems are real-time systems.
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