Pinocchio made a big comeback over Christmas. Like Johnny Rotten and the Muppets before him, he has eschewed traditional show business to appear in a television advert.
Singing his iconic classic “Got No Strings,” he hails the arrival of Apple’s new wireless headphones – aided by a number of lesser celebrities like Michael Phelps. The Pinocchio principle has long characterised our ambitions when it comes to creating new technological innovation. Wires and cables are restrictive, expensive and fragile, and we would all quite like to see the back of them. It is why we created Wi-Fi in the first place.
Yet while Wi-Fi allows us to use many other devices without wires, the network itself ironically still depends on them. We all know that box with the flashing lights in the office. This is quite clearly something of a paradox. A wireless network that is wired? Modern advances are, however, a wonderful thing. An alternative – one that offers businesses a more reliable and efficient solution – now exists.
The Cables Of Old
Wi-Fi has classically been dispensed to users through one of three types of cables: ADSL, EFM and Fibre.
The first of these, ADSL, is not often applicable in a business context. It is essentially the phone line that the individual consumer might have connecting with their house or flat. Easily disturbed by building work or online traffic, it is hardly worth a company’s time – unless said company has less than ten regular users in one place, in which case it may at least be the most cost-effective solution.
The second, EFM, guarantees a limited fixed bandwidth – enough to adequately support a business of twenty regular users or less. That may be right for certain businesses, but unlikely to support those with serious growth ambitions.
Fibre facilitates businesses of any size with a scalable connectivity solution, swiftly adapting to new capacity requirements. It assures consistent upload and download speed, and can support sharp spikes in internet usage. Yet all of these systems are subject to common failures. All of them depend on cabling hardware fitted underground, which can be disrupted.
Even just five years ago, users could not draw the utmost bandwidths or stability from their connectivity line. The technology was simply unable to deliver that kind of service. More recent advances in Fibre development have allowed Wi-Fi to be delivered remotely, using sky-bound microwave transmission. This means that a receiver can be fitted to the exterior of an office building, and transmit an effective internet connection to all users in that vicinity.
Such a solution can provide scalable bandwidth of up to 1GB. A business can therefore receive its primary traffic, with real-time fail-over, within sixty seconds.
What Does That All Mean For A Business?
This form of Fibre delivers the most reliable, consistent form of connectivity yet available. The primary traffic system described above means that, in the event of any technical problem, the business can remain up and running as normal. That consistency of activity is crucial in modern business; network downtime is a potential business killer. Conservative Gartner assessments have numbered the average downtime cost to a business, in recent years, at between £100,000 and £420,000 per hour. This comes thanks to associated losses in productivity and business transaction.
That tells us how important a modern, reliable connectivity solution is. Depending on the amount of time lost, it could be the difference between success and losing ground on a rival. It also bears importance in terms of overall company morale: no employee enjoys being in the office with no way of completing their tasks!
Finally, there is an important consideration to make in terms of installation. An underground line is a far more complex technical project to complete than a sky-bound microwave operation. The work required to dig into the building – having gained permission from the landlord and local council to do so – and lay the line takes several months. Fitting equipment on the roof is, by contrast, far easier and quicker.
History tells us that generally, the more modern a device is, the less wires it tends to use. Pinocchio tells us in his iconic little ditty that strings would hold him down. Depending on underground wires for Wi-Fi certainly can hold a business down. In transferring connectivity to a remote framework, businesses can streamline the whole process. They may, by doing so, avoid the hassle of an underground line-laying scheme – and reap the benefits of the most reliable, scalable, diverse and sustainable network solution yet produced.
Viastak work to support businesses looking to leverage technology, in order to streamline the way they operate. We believe in creating flexible, dynamic enterprises that are equipped to deal with the demands of the modern global economy. To find out more, please get in touch.
Written by Oliver Kiddell
Oliver Kiddell, Author at Viastak Technologists.