A continuing trend we’ve seen throughout the years is the upward growth of bandwidth connections required by our customers. As bandwidth connections provide faster speeds, in turn services become more bandwidth intensive, so in essence they almost drive each other. Where a few years ago a T1 or DSL line would be more than enough, now bonded services and fiber-based connectivity are the norm.
Over the past few years, the push of services to the cloud has really driven businesses to ramp up their bandwidth needs. SaaS, fuller featured email, VoIP and Hosted PBX, and offsite backup are just a few services that businesses are using nowadays that require reliable high speed connections. Up until a few years ago, businesses were running these services in house, but the lower monthly cost and ease of use when it comes to hosting them in the cloud has required businesses to re-think their Internet connectivity needs.
Recently an article in Network World Magazine raised the issue of future growth, and planning in advance for the amount of bandwidth that will be needed over the coming few years. The author laid out a number of growing services that more and more businesses are adopting and relying on, and definitely makes the case for having more bandwidth available to businesses. While the article focuses more on WAN (Wide Area Network) architecture, the case can definitely be made that even a single location business needs to plan out their network and bandwidth growth.
Of course, a multi-location client will definitely feel the pinch of lower bandwidth services much sooner than a business with just one office. Businesses that run a WAN tend to have a number of centralized services that run on a constant basis and are required by their employees to perform their daily tasks. In addition to those services many companies are adopting a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) policy as the article noted, and employees are now running their work desktop along with a tablet and a WiFi connected smartphone in many offices… and if that business is running VoIP, that’s now four connected devices where even just five years ago there was only one.