One thing we always like to ask businesses who reach out to us about our services is what their plans are a few years from now. There are always things to consider when it comes to Internet access services such as DSL, MegaNet Business Wireless, T1, and Metro Ethernet, as some offer defined upgrade paths, while others… well, not so much.
Sometimes it’s best for a company to think about where they want to be, verses where they are right now, so they have a clear plan to add on or bring in more bandwidth if necessary.
Here are a few specific things businesses can think about when it comes to their potential future needs, and the type of Internet access they might be considering.
DSL – Many smaller businesses tend to gravitate towards DSL due to it’s low price point. If your company is only using the Internet for email and basic research/surfing uses, DSL very often is a good fit. However, DSL speed and performance is location specific – the further away your office is from the equipment that provides the DSL service over a copper phone line, the fewer speeds your office will qualify for. If your business plans on growing in size, or increasing the services you use online, DSL may not be able to keep up with your growth plans, requiring you to install another type of service; this may also mean changing your network configuration or other services you might be using right now.
Wireless – MegaNet Business Wireless services are mostly available in the greater Fall River area (with a few other smaller locations), but businesses who do qualify for it can often get up to 20M synchronous speeds if they require it. Many of our clients here in Fall River tend to range in the 3M – 5M territory, but they all have the ability to get up to 20M easily on our MegaNet Business Wireless network. Customers who require more than 20M can opt to move to our private wireless service, which can have speeds topping out at 500M+ over the air. Given the history of landline wiring issues in Fall River (a problem also shared in other locations such as New Bedford), MegaNet Business Wireless is often a great solution for businesses who need both reliability as well as quick access to more Internet speed if required.
T1 service – Ten years ago, businesses could safely install a fractional T1 line, knowing that they could easily upgrade from 384k or 512k all the way up through a whole 1.5M. Wow! Technology! Obviously a lot has changed since then, much of it driven by cloud based services as well as streaming media. For some businesses, 1.5M bandwidth over T1 simply isn’t enough for their needs, so moving to bonded or load balanced T1 service can provide anywhere from 3M through 12M bandwidth; and this bandwidth is extremely low latency and still has one of the highest reliability factors. There are still plenty of offices running just fine on T1 service (and will continue to do so), however in 2014 there are more options available to them than there were in 2004, such as…
Metro Ethernet – Metro Ethernet has become the “new” T1 service for businesses that require plenty of reliable bandwidth with the ability to quickly and easily upgrade if needed. For the first few years it was available, Metro Ethernet was mostly restricted to larger cities based on fiber and facilities availability. Now, it’s very rare to find a location that can’t get Metro Ethernet if the business requires it. Plus, it’s attractive price point has made it both a T1 and a T3 replacement service. With speeds from 10M all the way through 1GB+ available, Metro Ethernet has positioned itself as the perfect service for the company that will need more Internet speeds as it grows. For businesses that want that growth, but don’t yet have the budget, Ethernet over Copper can give them most of that upgrade path; of course it does currently cap out at 20M, and has less availability than Metro Ethernet.
Businesses tend to look at a few specific factors when considering new Internet access or a new provider, namely costs, availability, and install timeframes. By also considering potential future growth, businesses can get a service that meets their needs both now as well as in the future, saving them the time and expense of having to undertake the review and installation process all over again.
Is your business considering changing it’s Internet access for better speed or performance? Or are you perhaps thinking about changing providers to improve your uptime or costs? Download our free Internet Service Provider Change checklist to make sure your company is fully prepared to change your service or provider with ease and minimal service disruption.