A fiber-optic Internet installation can offer numerous benefits to business IT pros and landlords. Due to the relative newness of this technology, you may be wondering if the benefits outweigh the cost or cons. While fiber-optic Internet connectivity is a much newer technology than broadband Internet on copper cable, many businesses have found significant higher returns on their investment in fiber.
11 Business Benefits of Fiber Connectivity
Fiber-optic connectivity can lend a great advantage to companies of all sizes, particularly organizations who use the cloud for apps or data storage. Fiber coupled with voice-over-IP (VoIP) telephony is a powerful combination for business communications. In this blog, you’ll learn 11 major ways your company can benefit from fiber connectivity.
Fiber-optic Internet is many times faster than even the highest-speed copper Internet connections, with options available that range from 5 Mbps to 100 Gbps. During periods of high demand for Internet access, your business should not notice the Internet slowing down.
Research by Sandisk indicates that slow Internet connections cost employees “one week per year of productivity.” While the time your teams spend waiting on slow Internet can seem minor, it adds up significantly over time. Your Internet connectivity should never inhibit productivity. It should be a tool that supports your employees’ desire to work productively.
2. Cloud Access
From customer relationship management (CRM) tools to data storage, the cloud is an important business tool for apps, hosting, and more. 82% of organizations are now using the cloud in some capacity. The speed and bandwidth capabilities of fiber Internet mean faster access to your data and applications stored in the cloud.
Your business can benefit from fewer delays in accessing cloud-hosted information via your software-as-a-service (SaaS) tools and other platforms, which mean your sales and customer service representatives will no longer face delays with communicating with prospects or customers. As businesses move more and more services to the cloud, fiber-optic Internet is becoming critical.
Fiber Internet connectivity offers significant reliability advantages over copper Internet connectivity, due to the fact that fiber is much stronger than copper. Fiber-optic Internet is not susceptible to inclement weather conditions, which can damage or stall data transmission via copper cabling. Fiber is also resistant to human or electrical interference unless fibers are physically cut.
Unreliable Internet connections can have real costs to business. Any amount of unplanned downtime can bring business communications and productivity to complete stop. If your company requires an Internet connection to make phone calls or access applications, reliability is a necessity.
4. Signal Strength
With traditional broadband Internet using DSL or Ethernet over Copper, the signal degrades as the user moves away from the swtich. The signal strength of fiber-optic Internet does not degrade as quickly over distance. Organizations in relatively large spaces could benefit from better signal strength throughout the facility. This could be particularly true for employees in workspaces that are located a significant distance from the telecommunications room, which may be negatively impacted by distance with broadband Internet.
For businesses with a high need for data transmission, it’s relatively easy to “hit the cap” on your cable Internet bandwidth. While fiber-optic Internet for business is not truly unlimited, the bandwidth availability is significantly higher, and speed does not decrease as high demands are put on the network. The following user activities can place particularly high demands on business bandwidth:
- SIP trunking
- Web Conferencing
- Streaming high definition video (example… training video)
- File sharing
- Cloud Applications
Signs of low bandwidth availability can include slow speeds, delays, and pixelated video quality.
If your current Internet connection is not sufficient to support your company’s legitimate bandwidth demands for telephone service via SIP trunking, video conferencing or accessing cloud applications, you could significantly benefit from an upgrade to fiber-optic Internet connectivity.
6. Symmetric Speed
“Symmetric speed” is a term used to refer to equal upload and download times on an Internet connection. With fiber Internet, your employees can benefit from equal upload and download times.
Is symmetric speed necessary? It’s certainly not critical for business operations, but it’s beneficial. TechZine writes that improvements in symmetric speed are improvements that reflect, “how networks are really used.” Today’s employees are more likely to upload video content, files, or make phone calls while downloading content while they work than they were a decade ago. Symmetric speed enables users to accommodate heavy demands on downloads and uploads simultaneously via their data connection.
Latency is a term used to describe delays that occur while processing data over an Internet connection. Fiber-optic Internet eliminates many of the latency issues users experience on cable Internet, particularly when downloading or uploading video or high-definition content. The business benefits of lowering your latency could include:
- Better voice quality for VoIP users
- Ability to move more apps to the cloud
- Downloads and uploads of huge files without disruption
- Improved collaboration between employees