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Choosing the wrong internet plan might cost your Business Big-Time!

29 Mar 2017

Choosing the wrong internet plan might cost your Business Big-Time!

These days, navigating your way around the right internet plan is like selecting a phone plan. Internet service providers like to create the idea of choice but really offer no value at all.

A good example is an NBN ready plan. What exactly does that mean? Certainly, we are all ready for NBN, but will I get it when I sign up? The answer is no, you won’t be on NBN, but I suppose the $20 modem you get will be when fibre finally rolls out in your suburb.

Selecting the right plan for your business can be a minefield as there are other variables to consider. Some of them would include; how many staff do you employ on site, are you using, or planning to use Office 365, and will staff be connecting to your business remotely?

While there is an equation that will let you know exactly what speed internet you will need, it can generally be put simpler.

All residential internet plans are asymmetrical, in that they will give you download speeds, often around 20 Mbps, which is heaps, but only offer upload speeds of around 1Mbps. This is fine for home use, as that’s really all you need to download movies, emails, browse the net. Even for a family of 5, this will normally be adequate.

In a business scenario, faster internet downloads are only part of the picture. Here, you’re might be making Skype for Business calls, maybe you have an Office 365 or a SharePoint Online site, or use an accounting package online. This is where you need to upload data just as much data as you download.

In this case, it would be wise to consider a business-grade internet connection.

Business-grade internet connections can also be a mine-field in understanding and negotiating, but there are some variables that are constant. Firstly, they are often symmetrical. Usually starting at around 10Mb download and 10Mb upload, e.g., 10:10 Mb. This type of connection is at the lower end and speed, but will get most small businesses (less than 10 people) ready for most cloud-based infrastructure situations, like Office 365, business-grade VoIP, and Online databases or CRM’s.

The main type of business grate internet connection are: EFM (Ethernet First Mile), SHDSL (Symmetrical digital subscriber line) and of course some fibre optic plans. Don’t be fooled. The speed of the internet connection, is the speed, regardless of the technology that is used. And often price and availability will be the decisive factor in which one you will eventually go with.

So if you’ve just setup or moving to an office, have a few staff, and really want to lever some of the benefits of cloud computing, it might be in your best interest to consider a business-grade internet connection. It will positively increase productivity, reduce IT costs, and enable you to explore many emerging cloud-based technologies like Office 365, and Virtual PBX and VoIP systems.