T1 Internet Service – When is a Business Internet T1 Justified?
This article explores the feasibility of T1 Internet Service for those businesses that have very high uptime needs. Since T1 Internet service comes with a service level agreement (SLA), average uptime is much higher than DSL or cable. Also, with business Internet T1 service, the upload and download speeds are a constant. This is imperative for critical information needs, where limited downtime can be allowed and productivity depends on consistently fast Internet connections. Also, for voice traffic a T1 may be configured for quality of service (QOS) to guarantee the access speed and consistency needed for quality voice traffic.
Many small business make use of economical Internet connections, such as DSL, cable, and fios. For economical pricing, all of these methods use shared resources to connect users to the Internet backbone. In addition, reliability is not assured, athough a “best effort” is made to preserve connectivity. A business Internet T1 data line, although using the same technology as SDSL, is given a higher value by the telcos. A T1 failing will be repaired within hours whereas a DSL, cable, or fios user might experience up to 5 days repair time.
Telecommunications vendors make available higher-end services, such as business Internet T1 service, in order to address higher reliability and consistency needs in some businesses. As a company increases in headcount, the importance of an Internet connection increases and the business often needs higher availability. Often, the usage and reliance on the Internet also increases when services such as voice, and shared data services are moved to the “cloud.” In the neighborhood of 10 employees, a business will find it’s telecommunications needs economically provided by a business Internet T1 service.
Voice over IP (VOIP) has become commonly used as well as various shared data services. Shared data services include company databases, as well as popular applications such as SalesForce.com, GoogleApps, and many more. Generally, the quality of information available on the Internet has also improved over time, causing more extensive dependence on connectivity to applications and online data sources. Changing business operations and usage all necessitate additional bandwidth and reliability. Sales revenue and productivity of employees can be affected for each minute of downtime. Imagine having no office telephone service for up to 5 days.
Although difficult to measure, timely information or lack thereof can make or break many small enterprises. This is especially true for companies using “cloud computing,” where online collaboration and information for daily operations in office calendaring, documents and financial data are only accessible through the company Internet connection.
With business Internet T1 service, the SLA offers a “guarantee” of reliability and availability of crucial Internet services. Although many don’t realize it, a company’s Internet connection is an essential resource as more business functions and information needed for daily operations now depend on reliable access. Loss of connectivity even for hours or a few days at a time can be fatal to daily operations or even the enterprise.
As T1 prices continue to drop and businesses’ need for connectivity increases, a greater number will turn to the reliability and availability of T1 Internet service for day to day operations. The SLA distinguishes T1 Internet service from less expensive and unreliable DSL, cable, and fios services that are now commonly used. The SLA will be the deciding factor in order that critical operations are maintained, productivity remains high, and sufficient sales and revenue is achieved for survival.
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