As a provider of internet connections to UK businesses of all different shapes and sizes, it’s easy to spot when an organisation is hemorrhaging cash on their connection. Over the last 10 years, the technology used to deliver internet access has changed dramatically. Ten years ago, you were lucky to have fibre connectivity in your area, and if you did, you would probably see no more than 20Mbp/s download speeds. The connections were clunky, unreliable and expensive.
Fast forward to today and the UK is undergoing a huge transformation with a planned FTTH (fibre to the home) roll out across the UK and a widely available network capable of delivering 1000Mbps download speeds.
Before we go any further, let’s look at the types of internet connection likely to be available to your business:
Types of internet connectivity
ADSL and ADSL2+
The oldest type of connection, ADSL and ADSL2+ are delivered over your copper phone line and provides anything from 2Mbps to 30Mbps download speeds. These days, you should only consider ADSL connections for very basic requirements, but ideally you should look beyond to FTTC.
FTTC – Fibre to the Cabinet
FTTC is the next step up. Whilst it’s still delivered over your phoneline, if you trace your phoneline back to the street cabinet, you’ll find that cabinet is connected to high-speed glass fibre lines. It’s great in that your speeds are higher (particularly upload, which is important for business), reliability is stronger and it’s typically around the same price as ADSL. It’s not so great because it’s shared – you’re at the mercy of whatever else is coming and going through that street cabinet, meaning your speeds will fluctuate.
FTTP – Fibre to the Premises or Leased Line
This is the gold standard at the time of writing. Rather than copper, the fibre is extended all the way into your building. Its ultra-reliable, speeds are guaranteed (it’s not shared!) and usually very high speed. Naturally, it comes at a price.
How do I know if I’m overpaying?
As with all things it’s always good to check what’s available on the market. As fibre has become more widely available and more competitive, pricing has been driven down. It wasn’t unusual even as recently as three years ago to pay double the rate for an FTTP connection than you’d pay today. Consider these key questions:
- When was the last time I sourced some quotes for internet connectivity for my business?
- Has my provider approached me with options at the point of renewal?
- Are we on the right type of connection?
If the answer is no to the above, spend some time on this as the cost savings could be huge.
Always keep in mind that surface level costs can sometimes be misleading. Looking at a quote for two types of internet connection – FTTC and FTTP – the easiest thing to do is point at the cheapest option and crack on. After all, an FTTC connection is available for as little as £30 per month for 12 Months, and a Gigabit FTTP connection would be 10 times that.
However, ask yourself how you track lost productivity through internet problems… it’s almost impossible, but everybody feels it when the internet speed isn’t good enough and there is no doubt it will hit your ability to deliver to your customers.
How can a company like Resolve help?
Your IT partner or Managed Service Provider is in a great position to help you. Not only should they have the partner relationships to get hold of excellent pricing, they’re also what’s called "vendor agnostic", i.e. they don’t have any allegiance to one particular provider and can do the shopping around for you. Not only that, but they should have their finger on the pulse and can let you know when it’s time to change and make a saving!