For those old enough to remember the old days of dial-up connection with Wi-Fi nowhere to be seen, modern broadband has been a God send. For the most part it allows us to download files in a reasonably fast time and streaming movies usually goes without a blip.
For businesses however this is not always enough, especially larger corporations with offices in different parts of the country or indeed the world. For smaller businesses 10 to 100 mega bits a second is usually adequate.
So what type of business, if any, demands such high-speed internet connections? Is it really necessary and what advantages does it bring them?
For companies with an international presence, superfast internet speeds are a must. This is particularly true when it comes to video-conferencing calls. For a company who has a presence in different parts of the world, video-conferencing has become an essential tool for effective communication. As this requires high uninterrupted speeds to be carried out effectively, your average home/ office broadband will not suffice.
Leased line connections offer a dedicated line to the user, meaning it doesn’t matter what time of day or night you use it, it will still deliver a fast connection. Click here for a description of the different types of internet connections that are currently available.
In large city institutions leased line connections offer both a fast and ultimately a more secure way to conduct business. Take for example a video-conference call going on between London and New York – at the same time someone else wants to monitor stock prices. It is essential that there is sufficient bandwidth to run both applications simultaneously, otherwise one or other – or both will suffer.
Leased line connections also offer more security as they are connected through two points as opposed to over the internet.
Basic broadband packages offer download speeds but not always upload speeds. This is ineffective for an e-commerce business or any company that conducts their business online. They need a fast connection that can also guarantee quick uploading times in order to sustain their business.
Of course not everyone needs such superfast speeds; here is an article outlining how much internet speed is right for you.
Image courtesy of Shutterstock. The words and opinions above were provided by a third-party, and as such this should be considered a ‘sponsored post’.
Today’s households have more internet-connected devices than ever before – so as you can imagine having a robust home Wi-Fi network to connect your burgeoning family of devices has never been more important.
Choosing the right router for your home can be a bit of a minefield. It isn’t as simple as choosing the most expensive. For example: there’s no point going for a dual-band router if all your devices have old wireless receivers and therefore can’t take advantage of the extra power on offer via the new 802.11ac wireless standard.
Here are our some of our top pick for the some of the best Wireless routers available today.
D-Link DIR-810L – Price, £116.
D-Link has been synonymous with home networking for years, and has just released a new range of wireless routers promising increased performance and no more pesky dropouts. With their DIR-810L, you’ll enjoy the benefits of faster speeds and increased home coverage from the get-go. The DIR-810L has been specifically designed for homes where there’s a lot of HD streaming and large file transfers taking place. It’s an ideal solution for, say, a student house where there could conceivably be as many as 20 internet-connected devices running at anyone time.
The DIR-810L is so much faster than your average router because its part of the new 802.11ac family, which has now replaced 802.11n standard. We won’t bore you with the details but AC can achieve far higher speeds than a current N router, due to fact it operates on both 2.4GHz and the new 5GHz frequencies.
The great thing about this router is it is backwards compatible with all of your existing 802.11n wireless devices. And to make the transition to superfast speeds even easier you can add USB adapters to your existing desktop and laptop computers to bring them up the new AC standard.
DIR-868L Wireless AC1750 Dual Band Gigabit Cloud Router- Price, £140
D-Link has also announced variant of the new 8 series for users who want more than just superfast wireless connectivity. The DIR-868L USB 3.0 is also a dual-band 802.11ac router but comes with a bevy extra ports including four Gigabit Ethernet ports to provide high-speed wired connections for up to four PCs or game consoles.
The router’s SharePort Mobile app allows you to also connect a USB 3.0 storage device so you can instantly share documents, movies, pictures, and music with mobile devices and other computers connected to the network. And there’s also cloud support via D-Link’s mydlink Lite app, which helps you access, manage and view your network remotely from anywhere in the world securely.
The router operates on both the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz wireless bands at the same time and has six internal antennas for even greater wireless coverage.
TP-LINK’s new TD-W8980 is an incredibly robust all-in-one dual-band device combining both 5GHz band and the traditional 2.4GHz band. With 2 multifunctional USB ports, users can share printers, files and media across the local network.
Handily the TD-W8980 does the work of several networking devices packed into one device. It acts as ADSL2+ Modem, NAT Router, 4-Port Switch and Wireless N Access Point, eliminating the need to purchase multiple devices to access and share a high-speed Internet.
With 300Mbps 802.11n wireless and 4-gigabit LAN ports, the TD-W8980 is the ideal choice for bandwidth heavy users that rely on speedy, reliable connections for bandwidth intensive work or entertainment such as video calls, HD video streaming and online gaming.
Using the TD-W8980’s two multi-functional USB 2.0 ports, users can share printers, files and media either throughout the network at home with several different computers or even away, using the device’s FTP server functions so that you never have to part with your files.
Belkin Powerline AV+ Starter Kit – Price, £109.99
If you live in a big house then you might have to face the fact the no matter what wireless router you use, it may not serve your entire house. So what other options do you have? Well, you can, of course, run Ethernet cables to every room, and on new build homes this is become more and more commonplace.
But there is another way: homeplugs. They’re the easiest way to create an integrated network using your existing power lines within your house. To setup a pair of Belkin’s Powerline homeplugs it’s incredibly simple. First, you connect one adapter to your existing router and then plug it into an available plug socket. Then you plug the second adapter into an available wall socket where you want the Internet; and then you connect the other end to a device with an available Ethernet. And that’s about it.
Almost every device – except mobiles of course – has an Ethernet port and quite often a wired connection is a lot more robust than a wireless connection. Homeplugs are ideal for devices that don’t move around a lot, so if you need to connect your Sky box to your router a homeplug would be a the ideal solution. The only downside is you’re placement is obviously dictated by where you have an available wall socket. But in theory you could run an extension cable into the garden and still get full-speed wired Internet. The great thing about homeplugs is they work alongside a normal router, so they’re there to supplement the system rather than replace it. So if you have a room that’s a nightmare for wireless signal, a pair of well-positioned homeplugs could be the answer to all your wireless woes.
Belkin offers an affordable range with their Powerline AV+ starter kit. You get two plugs and you can easily add more pairs to more rooms as you see fit. What’s great about this particular set is each homeplug comes with 3 extra ethernet ports allowing you to plug in multiple devices into each home plug. So it would be an ideal solution for a lounge where you might have several devices that need to be connected to the Internet but don’t get moved around all that often.
I’m easily confused. At times when I pick up the small slab of metal and glass in my pocket and have access to the sum total of all human knowledge it feels like I am living in the future. And then I move house and have to wait seemingly forever for a basic internet connection, which even more bizarrely has to come through my landline telephone. What is this the 90s?
Fortunately Three relise how deeply silly this all is and have brought out a shiny hew alternative to traditional fixed-line dependent broadband for folks who aren’t downloading monstrous amounts of data on a monthly basis.
The new Web Cube is packed in a swanky modern case and comes with a mobile broadband SIM card already inserted. Simply plug it in to your wall socket, turn it on, and your home will automagically have Wi-Fi internet from Three. And when you move house, just take it with you.
The Web Cube is HSPA+ enabled to the 21.1Mbps technical standard, though you’d be more likely to experience 2-5Mbps, which is enough for casual internet use. I wouldn’t venture into the brave new world of streaming services however as you may hit your download limits sooner than you expect and experience a little bit of lag if you tried to get something like an OnLive up and running.
Three is offering customers a choice of two Web Cube tariffs to provide flexibility and great value. Customers can opt for a one-month rolling contract with 10GB of data costing £15 a month plus an upfront charge of £59.99 for the device. Alternatively Three offers a 24-month contract with 15GB of data costing £15.99 a month and no upfront charge for the device.