Software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) has fundamentally changed networking technology in a host of ways. It's changed so much, in fact, that some think WAN optimization itself is a dead art, lost forever against the greater efficiency of SD-WAN. That's not strictly true, but not too far off. There are still ways to optimize a WAN, thanks in large part to SD-WAN itself.
Is it time to get rid of the wide-area network (WAN)? Some would say it is, but almost as many would say that it's just time for a better WAN. Making a WAN better calls for some fairly serious changes, but those changes can make the system more ready to take on the ever-increasing demands of modern business.
For all businesses, internet access is crucial. It can, however, be difficult to decide on the form of internet access that is best for your company. While some businesses often default to fiber, fixed wireless is an option that should be more closely considered.
Microwaves do more than heat up food -- they can be used to communicate. And microwave transmission technology is an excellent way for businesses to connect to the internet and take advantage of cloud-based services. The benefits don't stop there, however.
Network downtime is, on a certain level, unavoidable. We do what we can to minimize and protect against it, but it still happens. With an Information Technology Intelligence Consulting (ITIC) Research study finding that an hour of downtime costs 98% of businesses at least $100,000, it's worth protecting against. Downtime doesn't just cost that six-figure hit, however...it costs a lot more than that.
Fixed wireless offers several advantages that make it able to address many of the connectivity problems we see in business.
Topics: business internet
Digital transformation; as the name suggests, it's a complete transformation of even the most basic business and organizational processes. It's taking businesses from “the way we've always done it” to “how we'll be doing it tomorrow.” Yet we don't make that leap in isolation. We need the right kind of network to make our transformation truly occur.
What is Fixed Wireless?
Fixed wireless service is a comparatively new technology that operates commonly on radio transmission to connect established, wired communications systems. Point-to-point microwave transmissions are also under the umbrella of fixed wireless, and are used to bypass many of the obstacles terrestrial internet connections have.
What is Mobile Internet?
Mobile internet is the older, more familiar mobile technology, one that refers mainly to internet access delivered over a cellular network. It uses the same cell towers that handle voice traffic to send data to and from a mobile device. It's specifically designed for flexibility, and essentially works, as the name suggests, like a portable, mobile internet connection.
So What's the Difference Between Mobile Internet and Fixed Wireless?
The two look similar, and ultimately take you to the same internet, so it would be easy to mistake them. There's a clear difference in how the two work, however, as well as some differences in points of performance.
- Latency. Mobile internet has a much greater latency than fixed wireless. It takes longer for the signal to run the circuit of cellular towers than it does the comparatively point-to-point access provided by fixed wireless.
- Speed. Fixed wireless is much faster than mobile internet, for much the same reason as its low latency. The method of data provision is faster with fixed wireless, so the connections are faster in turn.
- Bandwidth. Fixed wireless commonly offers much greater bandwidth access than mobile bandwidth, owing mainly to the nature of the connection. Those cell towers are used by everyone in the vicinity, while the point-to-point connection of fixed wireless is generally only used by one party.
- Portability. Mobile internet's big advantage is its portability. It goes most everywhere voice traffic goes. Fixed wireless, meanwhile, requires a line-of-sight connection, or close to it, to produce a connection. Thus, fixed wireless is commonly seen in denser traffic areas.
How Do I Get Started With Fixed Wireless?
When you're ready to get started with fixed wireless, the place to start is with MHO Networks . We're a well-known and widely-used provider of fixed wireless, as well as metro ethernet and other options that can offer the speed, bandwidth, and latency. So give us a call and let us help you get started with a powerful new option in internet access.
What Is 5G?
5G is a blanket term for "fifth generation mobile network." The Groupe Speciale Mobile Association (GSMA) has an eight-point scale for measuring whether or not a network qualifies as 5G. Not all of these need to be met; even the GSMA acknowledges "....it is difficult to conceive of a new technology that could meet all of these conditions simultaneously."
- Availability. There should be five-nines (99.999%) network availability and 100% network coverage in a given region, or at least the perception of both.
- Bandwidth. Bandwidth should measure 1000 times the per unit area, and cover 10 to 100 times the number of connected devices.
- Energy use. The connection should use 90% less energy, and pose a 10 year battery life for machine-type devices that use little power on the network.
- Speed. A 5G connection should offer between 1 Gbps and 10 Gbps connections to end points, with a latency of one millisecond or less.
What Will 5G Do To -- and For -- My Bandwidth Needs?
Now that we know what 5G is, and isn't, we get a much better idea of what this kind of technology will do for our bandwidth needs.
- Current needs will be met briskly. The network as we know it currently isn't in the best of shape, but nor is it at immediate risk of failure. Thus, 5G access will allow us to carry on readily, meeting needs in streaming video, big data analytics and the like.
- Previously unconsidered needs will likely also be met quickly. One of the biggest problems facing an internet-connected society is the "bandwidth gap," most notably in rural areas. 5G's wireless nature should open up this field and bring connectivity to the previously unconnected, or minimally-connected.
- New needs will emerge rapidly. Some advance that there are many potential new uses for bandwidth that are as yet unused or undiscovered in points like augmented reality or virtual reality. With a substantial new source of bandwidth available, and in more places, that greater connectivity will likely put a major strain on the new connection type.
The coming of 5G signifies an era in which we need faster connections and better capabilities from our internet services. While 5G is the next generation of cellular, business internet is escalating in speed, reliability, and security as well. Talk to MHO Networks today to learn more about what the future of wireless looks like, and how you can ready your business for new bandwidth needs down the line.
While IT departments must work to provide wide-area network (WAN) operations to solve today's needs, the most astute are considering tomorrow's needs as well. That's got more than a few thinking about how to address those future needs, and what the WAN of tomorrow will look like.
Topics: Next Generation of WAN