Short for Internet Access Provider, a company that provides access to the Internet. IAPs generally provide dial-up access through a modem and PPP connection, though companies that offer Internet access with other devices, such as cable modems or wireless connections, could also be considered IAPs.
The terms IAPs and ISP (Internet Service Providers) are often used interchangeably, though some people consider IAPs to be a subset of ISPs. Whereas IAPs offer only Internet access, ISPs may provide additional services, such as leased lines (T-1 or T-3) and Web development. In contrast to both IAPs and ISPs, online services provide their own proprietary content in addition to Internet access.