Types of Internet Solutions: Which is best for your business?
In a previous blog, we discussed the primary step when choosing an Internet Service for your business – Shared and Dedicated Access. Now we want to take you through the second step, which is selecting the right delivery method for your Internet services. Delivery methods are the different technologies used to deliver the internet to your business and the most common types are Fibre, Cable, DSL, Wireless, and Satellite.
Similar to choosing the internet connection, choosing the delivery method is dependent on your business needs. You need to understand your organization’s current and future IT requirements and look at key variables including location, speed, reliability, bandwidth, and cost.
Below we explain the differences between the most common types of internet delivery technologies to help you select the option that’s best suited to your business.
Internet Types: How they work and the pros and cons of each
Satellite Internet uses a satellite orbiting earth to get an internet signal from your provider, which is delivered to your business through a provided satellite dish receiver and then to your modem where it’s translated into an internet connection.
Because the signals have to travel out of Earth’s atmosphere and the satellite is over 20,000 miles from your business, it opens the door to interference and latency causing significant time delays in sending and receiving data. The speed and reliability can also be negatively affected due to weather and obstructions like trees, wind, rain, and sunspots that interfere with the satellite signals, resulting in slower speeds and downtime. This can be a significant problem if you’re a business that needs 24/7 access.
Satellite Internet is a good choice for businesses operating in rural and remote areas that don’t have any other options like Fixed wireless, DSL, or Fibre.
- Rural and remote accessibility
- Slower download/upload speeds
- Reliability impacted by weather and physical obstructions
- More expensive than other types of internet
Wireless Internet or Fixed Wireless Internet transmits an Internet signal through the air over wireless waves via a nearby tower to a device mounted on the outside wall or roof of your business. The receiver will offer you access to the web through an Ethernet cable that connects to the router in your business. Your router then supplies access to the Internet via Wi-Fi so you can connect multiple devices. At Execulink, we have several wireless towers across southwestern Ontario.
Fixed wireless speeds are typically faster than Satellite, but it depends on your provider and location. Speed options generally allow for things like web browsing, video streaming, fast file downloads, and interaction with rich web applications. However, it’s important to note that though it’s more reliable and dependent than satellite, the quality of Wireless Internet can also be affected by weather or obstructions between the tower and receivers like trees or buildings sometimes resulting in slower speeds and downtime.
Fixed Wireless is a great option for eligible rural businesses, typically where Cable and DSL infrastructure does not reach.
- No phone or cable lines are required
- Reliable and fast service
- Rural and remote accessibility
- Can be used as a backup internet solution to keep your business online if the landline is compromised
- A line of sight connection with the access point is required which makes availability limited
DSL (Digital Subscriber Loop) is a stable, cost-effective Internet connection to your business delivered through a standard telephone line that is connected to a modem. The modem can connect your office devices through wireless or wired local area networks (LAN). Contrary to Dial-up internet, you are able to use your phone and internet services at the same time.
With typical download speeds from 1 to 50 Mbps and upload speeds from 1 to 10 Mbps, DSL is an ideal solution for small businesses with less data-intensive tasks such as sending emails, browsing the web, downloading small files, and moderate file sharing and cloud backup.
- Widely available, even in rural areas
- Slower speeds than cable
- Quality is contingent upon your distance from ISP
Cable Internet is a service that uses Coaxial Cable to deliver a fast, cost-effective internet connection to your business through a modem. It is one of the most common internet types and more widely available than Fibre.
With speeds ranging from 10 Mbps to 1 Gbps, it’s an ideal solution for businesses with high bandwidth web uses such as cloud-based applications, VPN access, video streaming, and file sharing. However, it’s important to note that the bandwidth on a cable connection is typically shared, so if there are other subscribers connecting simultaneously, your business might experience slower speeds.
- Widely available
- Faster speeds than DSL or Satellite
- Subject to slowdowns during peak usage
- Lower accessibility in rural and remote areas
Fibre Internet typically uses a clear glass core (Fibre) wrapped in a plastic cladding to support the transmission of light instead of traditional electrical signals. This is what separates Fibre from copper wire and Wireless services. Fibre surpasses both Cable and DSL Internet options in terms of response and speed. Fibre Internet can carry large amounts of data over its cables, moving at the speed of light. Since DSL and Cable signals are electronic, this can cause latency. Fibre Internet uses light waves as a signal, so the latency experienced with DSL and Cable is avoided.
Most Fibre plans offer speeds up to 1 Gbps which means it can easily support multiple devices using Wi-Fi in your business. It’s the best solution for businesses running applications that require low latency and high upstream bandwidth such as large data backups and sensitive voice and video. Through a dedicated Fibre line, the service is more secure, with less opportunity for interference. And with the flexible bandwidth, it easily scales to accommodate business growth while ensuring quality performance.
- Provides high speeds
- Reliable, quality service
- Symmetrical speeds
- Not widely available
Determining what type of internet connection is right for your company depends on your business needs and demands. If your office is in a remote or rural area with no access to landline connections, then satellite or fixed wireless might be the only option. If you need faster speeds for server hosting and constant cloud-based computing, you should consider Fibre if it’s available in your area. And, if budget is a factor then a more affordable DSL solution might suffice.
There are many variables to consider when choosing an internet type. Consider the following when you are trying to decide what is right for your business.
Budget: Determine what your business can afford and look at plans that meet your requirements. Look for cost savings with bundle offers by Internet Service Providers. Many ISP’s like Execulink offer internet bundles with Business Phone and TV services.
Availability: Not all internet options are available everywhere, so find out what providers and plans are available in your area.
Speed and reliability: Assess your Internet usage. If your business has heavy usage you will require faster speeds but if you just need access for downloading, email, and web browsing you can likely go with lower speeds.