The future of Business Broadband – Why it’s time to switch to full fibre
You’ll likely have heard terms like “full fibre” or “ultra-fast broadband” bandied around over the last decade or so. Successive governments have been keen to improve the UK’s broadband infrastructure in recent years, but without understanding these technical terms it can be hard to fully comprehend the changes that are underway.
A brief explanation of the UK’s broadband infrastructure
“Broadband” in the context of internet service provision, refers to modern, fast, always-active connections as opposed to the outdated dial-up connections of yesteryear which relied upon the PSTN (public switched telephone network).
Broadband can be delivered by various means, including wirelessly via satellites, but in the UK the 3 most common fixed-line broadband connections are cable, fibre and ADSL. Of these 3 broadband types ADSL remains the most common, but with the imminent decommissioning of the UK’s copper-based telephony infrastructure and fibre’s inherent speed advantages, businesses are increasingly shifting to fibre broadband offerings.
Fibre broadband comes in two forms: FTTC (fibre to the cabinet) and FTTP (fibre to the premises).
FTTC (fibre to the cabinet) explained.
An FTTC connection involves the use of fibre cables between the telephone exchange and the on-street cabinet, with “last mile” connectivity to a home or business premises provided by copper cables. FTTC connections are currently the most common type of fibre connection in the UK, and typically offer upload speeds of between 36mbps and 76mbps.
FTTP (fibre to the premises) explained
FTTP connections eliminate the “last mile” copper infrastructure, and instead the connection is carried directly from the telephone exchange to your business premises using fibre optic cables exclusively. Typically, FTTP broadband services offer speeds of up to 1GBps.
FTTC connections are often referred to as “superfast” broadband. FTTP connections are often referred to as “ultrafast” broadband or “full fibre.” And both connections are commonly referred to simply as “fibre broadband.” Confusing, we know!
The fibre optic advantage
FTTP connections perform better than their FTTC counterparts due to the superiority of fibre-optic cabling vs copper cables. Key advantages of fibre cabling include:
- Greater Bandwidth Efficiency. Fibre optic cables carry data more space-efficiently than their copper counterparts, meaning less cable mass for the same bandwidth.
- Less signal degradation. Fibre optic light signals face less resistance than electrical copper wire signals, meaning less degradation over long distances. This is often evident in the way FTTC data speeds reduce significantly as your distance from the cabinet increases.
- Less susceptibility to interference. Electromagnetic interference can severely compromise copper wire connections. Fibre connections are impervious to such interference, resulting in a more robust, reliably high-quality data stream.
- Capable of much higher speeds. Fibre optic cables transit data at close to the speed of light, and these cables allowing for far greater bandwidths than similarly sized copper cables, they’re also able to achieve much higher maximum transmission rates. The maximum speed theoretically achievable by copper wire systems is around 40Gbps, whereas fibre optic cables have been observed achieving speeds of 768Tbps.
Fibre to YOUR premises
SolCo are proud to bring fibre direct to the premises of businesses in and around Reading. Our FTTP service, built on the infrastructure of one of the UK’s leading fibre network providers, Giganet, will deliver vastly improved speeds to improve your company’s connection to the outside world – all from only £60 per month!
Find out more about our service and to check eligibility for your premises, please visit our web page here.
SolCo IT Support Reading
Based in Reading, Solution Consultants provides IT Support, Telecoms, and Cloud solutions for SMEs across the Thames Valley. We get to know your business, challenges, and goals and deploy scalable and agile technology solutions that make a real difference.
We specialise in simplifying IT, making valuable technology more accessible than ever before. We believe technology has the power to transform your business and open access to new markets. Check out our site here.