Tuesday, May 15, 2007

T1 Internet too slow? That’s blasphemous! When is it time to upgrade from a full T1 line?

T1 Internet too slow? That’s blasphemous!
When is it time to upgrade from a full T1 line?

So your business is growing and you find that the company requires a lot of bandwidth for everyday use. Maybe you started with a fractional T1 line and moved up to a Full T1 line, and perhaps you’ve even moved up to a bonded T1 line. Is this more than enough, or can you see the day you might need even more broadband?

Since the mid ‘90s, T1 has been the standard Internet connection for small to medium-sized businesses across the United States. You may be one of these small businesses, and some of you may have been proud of the fact that your company finally “needed” a T1 line. It can be seen as a rite of passage for a company growing. T1 provided reliable connections to the Internet, and maybe other offices.

With reliable high-speed connections at their disposal, businesses began to turn to the Internet for their business needs. For general use, a T1 line was more than enough. How can you imagine NEEDING anything faster? At the time T1 was becoming popular, companies like IBM were deploying T3s. It was understandable, though. Those companies had thousands and thousands of employees that needed to send e-mail, or what not. No way did a small business owner even fathom needing a T3.

Well, nowadays data communications has evolved into a bandwidth-hogging beast. Sales, customer servicing and marketing, and outsourced mainframes for data storages, etc, all require MORE speed.

Bill Gates once said that no one would need more than a 512k connection. Now that may sound silly right now, but will a T1 be compared to the 512k connections in the future? It depends on your needs so look into your choices before you jump the gun and purchase T3.

The right type of connection for you depends on a few things.

Try to figure out if the speed you have is enough, and whether or not your business is starting to outgrow that speed. Do you think you’ll need something faster in a year or two?

How critical is the information you’re transmitting? Would it be best to just route across multiple backbones? Redundancy may be very important to you because Internet lines can go down. You just have to make sure every circuit has to be different, and not just the carrier.

Can you program router tables? Do you have an ASN, are you familiar with ARIN and AS numbers? Personally, I will honestly say no, I don’t and I’m not. Since things can get pretty technical, if you don’t know the technology yourself, you’ll have to hire someone experienced and knowledgable to maintain your network. This can get pricy as typical house-calls to program router tables properly can run $3,000-$4,000.

Are you ready/in need of something more than a T1? Weigh your options, like I always say, and make a careful decision. Simply getting a balanced T1 might solve your needs. It could mean the success of your business.