Three Signs It Is Time You Considered A Leased Line

Connectivity is an essential for most modern businesses. It is very rare that a company could survive without a good, stable internet connection. Those that could survive would find growth very difficult without this major resource being available.

For most people, internet means 'Broadband'. This is the standard connection, and is the lowest rung of the connectivity ladder. It suffers contention (more on this topic later), with a high possibility of faults or errors in operation, and suffers poor issue fix times.

After this, there are the 'Fibre' variants. FTTC, and more recently FTTP, are both ways of increasing your upload and download speeds, and both may work well for you.

 

1st Sign – You Require Guaranteed Upload And Download Speeds

Fibre and ADSL both suffer from unpredictable Upload and Download speeds. As your business grows and your usage grows correspondingly then the requirements you have from your connection will outreach what ADSL can supply. Fibre offers some improvement, but isn't the guaranteed solution some think.

The problem with 'Fibre' (and note that 'Fibre' is in inverted commas here) is that it isn't actually Fibre. Or, more accurately, it isn't an end to end Fibre connection.

The connection from you to your local street cabinet is still copper wire, and it is at this point that your connection will be throttled back. A good analogy might be a caravaning holiday (bear with me on this). Your car might be perfectly capable of travelling at 100 mph, but it isn't going to do that speed while towing a caravan. The caravan is limiting how fast your car can ultimately go. In the case of FTTC, your copper wire is the limiting factor. It doesn't actually matter how fast the 'Fibre' part of your connection is. Your speeds will still be limited by your 'caravan', the copper wire connecting your house or business to the BT cabinet.

ADSL suffers from the slowest speeds of all Connectivity options. As a consumer-grade option, it does not come with guaranteed issue-fix times, and is not suitable for supporting multiple users uploading and downloading data files. This problem will be compounded if you use a VoIP service for your telecoms.

 

2nd Sign – You Require A Service With Long-term Stability

Both ADSL and Fibre products also suffer from a problem termed 'Contention'. This means that, in essence, the more people around you, the lower your connection speeds will be.

The problem occurs due to the afore-mentioned BT cabinets. These little green boxes dot around our towns and cities, and make sure we all connect and remain connected to the public telephone network. It is this network that delivers internet connectivity – for most of us at least.

As more and more connections are needed, while neighbourhoods expand and houses are built, so this resource is shared between more and more users. As each new house is built, and new connection is requested and set up, so the original cabinet speed is 'shared' between additional users.

 

3rd Sign – Your Business Relies On Your Connection To Function And You Wish To Protect Against Possible Loss

This is the time when we 'get legal'. Neither ADSL or Fibre Connections provide a guarantee. If you look closely at an advert for ADSL or FTTC you will spot a small asterisk next to the speeds claimed. This asterisk relates to two very important words. The two words are “Up To”.

“Up To” covers the Provider in question, and means that the advertised speed is not necessarily the speed you will receive. The “Up To” speed given is just what it says – your speed will be anywhere up to the speed quoted. So if you have signed up for an “Up To” 50Mbps service, your Provider can provide a service anywhere between 0 and 50Mbps. This is one of the main disadvantages of using an ADSL connection for business – it is inherently unpredictable and unreliable.

FTTC is a more reliable service than ADSL, and is more suitable for business use, but still lacks an actual, legally binding guarantee that your service will not fall below a certain level. Providers are not required to deliver estimated speed predictions, and there are no legally binding penalties in place should the service fail to deliver what was promised.

 

The Solution – A Leased Line

So, bearing in mind the pitfalls of taking 'off the peg' solutions, there is another way – a Leased Line.

A Leased Line is a dedicated, end-to-end connection between your business and the national internet network.

It gives guaranteed Upload and Download speeds, and these are symmetrical, so you don't suffer from slower upload speeds than download speeds.

It also comes without the risk of Contention.
It also gives you legal redress should the service fall below the agreed speeds.

A Leased Line also comes with SLAs (Service Level Agreements), which gives financial compensation in the event of service disruption, and therefore some reassurance regarding your service level. If your connection falls below a certain speed for a set time duration, then you are entitled to some form of recompense. This functions as compensation for your loss of service, and also as a motivating factor for the Provider to ensure you receive what was advertised and signed up for.

If a customer requires a stable, high quality internet connection then we always recommend a Leased Line.

It gives the reassurance of a dedicated connection built solely for the customer, with specified service speeds.

It won't suffer contention, even if a new housing estate is built in between the customer and their exchange.

And it offers an SLA covering the customer should there be any issues.

 

Contact us if you wish to know more about a Leased Line for your business.

If you are considering internet connectivity, but are not ready for a Leased Line just yet, see our other connectivity products here.

Make The Best Use Of Your Internet Connection – Use VoIP

There can be very few companies who could operate without an internet connection.

 

Accountancy platforms, CRM systems and file-sharing websites have all become essential for modern businesses, and they all have one thing in common. They all rely on an internet connection.

 

As we are so reliant on our connection in order to work, it does lead onto one obvious conclusion.

 

Why not use it for your phone calls as well?

 

VoIP has progressed from a low cost substitute for 'ordinary' phone calls. It offers a cost effective alternative with increased functionality over a traditional phone system.

There is nothing to lose, and a lot to gain, from your company switching over to using VoIP.

 

And one of the biggest gains is to use one of your resources to its fullest.

 

If you are one of the forward-thinking people who have invested in a future-proof internet connection, why not use this resource to its maximum capacity?Along with maximising the ROI on your internet provision, VoIP allows a variety of other positives.

 

Your workers don't need to be based in one central office. In fact, your workers don't need to be based in an office at all.

 

As the phone system now lives 'in the cloud', it doesn't matter where users are physically located. As long as people have an internet connection, they can connect to their business phone system. Rather than using other means or methods to get in touch (calling from their home phone, calling from personal mobiles, putting messages in bottles), employees simply log in from wherever they are, and use the company's VoIP service.

 

This in turn leads to an interesting question – do you need an office at all? This is the ultimate extension of the remote working idea. If you don't actually need an office, why pay for an unnecessary expense? There are more and more companies who are working from a 'virtual' office. Workers are based in different physical locations, but using the same phone system. They can transfer calls seamlessly between each other, dial out displaying the company number, and receive calls to the company number. Calls will route in exactly the same way. Menu Auto-attendants and Music on Hold will all function as normal.

 

Callers will have no idea that their call has not gone through to an ordinary office. Their call will be transferred to the most appropriate person. The company's official audio greeting messages and Music will play as normal. The only difference is that your 'office' exists virtually, using the internet.

 

As just about everyone needs the internet (at home or on the move), why not use it to its best advantage? Get in touch to discuss the possibility of revolutionising the way you work.

 

More on our VoIP solutions

More on how we can help with your internet connection

 

The Importance of Choosing the Right Internet Connection for your Business

The Importance of Choosing the Right Internet Connection for your Business

Many people are now using IP Telephony (or VoIP) for their calls. From the home user who makes calls to relatives abroad, to the person who works remotely and needs to take his office with him, more and more people are coming to depend on this technology for their communications.

But how many of them realise that this choice is affected by another choice, one they made beforehand without thinking about VoIP?

Choosing the correct broadband connection is essential to function in today's business environment. Careful needs to be applied to a number of questions, in order to select a service which adequately provides the bandwidth needed, the scalability required, without paying for unnecessary resources which will go unused.

There are many tiers of internet connection, and you can understand why many customers get lost in a sea of acronyms. Most will have heard of ADSL (Otherwise known as ordinary 'Broadband'). After this comes EFM ('Ethernet for the First Mile'), followed by FTTC ('Fibre To The Cabinet'). The top tier, the glacé cherry on top of the connectivity cake, is the 'Leased Line'.

The first stage in making your decision is to decide on your current and projected usage. If you are a company which routinely transfers very large amounts of data, for instance using graphic design or video editing software, then you should consider a Leased Line.

A Leased Line gives a dedicated internet connection straight to your premises. You know the green cabinets which you see dotted around? This is a BT Cabinet. If there is one on or near your street then it is probably responsible for delivering your neighbourhood broadband. Imagine having an entire green cabinet all to yourself. That is basically a Leased Line. It avoids the problem known as 'Contention'.

If we return to your neighbourhood and its green cabinet, we can see the cabinet serving the houses and streets around it with FTTC broadband. So far, all well and good. However, now consider what happens when your neighbour (the annoying one with the huge garden) builds a cottage in his grounds. The new cottage will now need to connect to the internet. As the Green Cabinet has already been built, it is a finite resource which now most spread round more users. So, due to your annoying neighbour and his new cottage, your internet speeds will slow down. Now consider what happens when a developer decides to build five new houses on your street. Or ten. This slow down is caused by 'Contention'. You can see that the internet speed you started with can quickly degrade as time goes on.

This is annoying with general use within the home, but can be a major problem when trying to run a business.

The only problem with Leased Lines as a conection is the expense attached. Your really do need to be using the internet for huge amounts of data, and your business has to rely on this conection, in order for it to make financial sense.

So, we can move on to the second rung down on our Internet ladder. Or, sticking with our cake metaphor, the icing. An FTTC or EFM connection is seen by some as a good compromise. They offer improved connection speeds, and improved guarantees for upload and download speeds when compared with standard ADSL broadband.

The sponge at the base of the connectivity cake is ADSL – what most of us think of when we think of broadband. This has the lowest speeds of any variant, and is the most prone to issues, poor issue fix times, and contention.

SureVoIP Broadband now available

SureVoIP’s new VoIP optimised Internet connectivity takes all your telephone call traffic straight into the SureVoIP core network (now celebrating its 1st anniversary) without having to go over the public internet. This gives you the best possible business grade phone call.

This, along with SureVoIP’s presence in the two main UK public Internet exchanges, LINX and LONAP, enables it to be in full control of your traffic and thus provide a higher level of service – providing one of the best networks for business VoIP in the UK.

We are extremely happy to offer, after 8 months testing, four tiers of VoIP optimised business broadband:

  1. SureVoIP Business Premier
  2. SureVoIP Business Standard
  3. SureVoIP Business Basic
  4. SureVoIP Fibre (FTTC)

These products have a bigger download speed vs upload speed.

We can also offer:

  1. Leased Lines / Ethernet
  2. EFM (Ethernet for the First Mile)
  3. Custom point to point solutions for larger businesses

These products offer the same download and upload speed.

 

SuperConnected Cities

SureVoIP is also a member of the SuperConnected Cities BDUK Connection Vouchers Scheme, which is available in the following cities and gives you access to a £3000 voucher:

Inverness, Aberdeen, Dundee, Perth, Stirling, Edinburgh, Glasgow

Belfast, Birmingham, Brighton and Hove, Bristol, Cambridge, Cardiff, Coventry, Derby, Derry/Londonderry, Leeds-Bradford, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Newport, Oxford, Perth, Portsmouth, Salford, York

Please contact us for more information.

Last dates for new orders and changes

Please see the following dates:

Thanks.

VoIP Optimised Broadband update

Dear all,

Just a quick update to let you know where we are with our broadband roll out. We’ve been working with Fluidata SEP to get our own platform, interconnects, resilience and quality right before releasing the final services. We’re very happy with the result. Right now we have some BT Wholesale ADSL (for VoIP only IPv6 broadband), LLU ADSL (which will be our unlimited data product) and BT Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC) live and in use with select customers and SureVoIP Partners. We also have some Ethernet Fibre products about to go live with customers.

It’s all just about there and is currently in the final stages. What’s left is Quality Of Service (QoS) testing for VoIP/SIP, integration with the SureVoIP API for SureVoIP Partners and our own use and a Broadband Checker for the main website. It’s taken a long time, but doing things right always does. Much better than us just adding a margin on to someone else’s internet connectivity products, where as this way we have lots of control and your traffic comes straight in to the SureVoIP Network.

The new customer portal is also making excellent progress which will be available for Beta usage next month, all going well. More when we have it.

Thanks as always,

Gavin.

SureVoIP is now an independent IP network operator and 2014

Dear all,

Some of you will already know that currently SureVoIP rents servers in London and owns and co-locates some in Edinburgh. This is all about to change. Those of you that follow SureVoIP on Twitter and read the SureVoIP Blog or have chatted to me personally at GraniteExpo 2013 last month will already know all about this.

As of now we are an independent ISP, but more specifically an Internet Telephony Service Provider in our own right. We made our first test VoIP call last week across are new network. Here are the details and what you can expect this to bring to our SureVoIP Partners, your customer and our direct customers. This has been fully self-funded (and fully paid for outright) via your hard work which is now almost fully deployed:

  • Juniper and Cisco based with an on site 4 hour response support SLA
  • Full Out of Band management network
  • RIPE LIR – https://stat.ripe.net/as199659
  • IPv4 and IPv6 based using our directly assigned IP address allocations
  • Based in Telehouse East – full rack and directly contracted with Telehouse
  • Small PoP in Edinburgh which will be expanded once we join IXScotland
  • Level3 Tier 1 provider for transit – directly contracted with Level3
  • NTT Tier 1 provider for transit – directly contracted with NTT
  • Members of LINX (London Internet Exchange) –  Check the members page – https://www.linx.net/about/memberlist/letter/S
  • Fluidata interconnect for full UK coverage in order to for us to provide internet connectivity which is VoIP optimised. This includes ADSL, FTTX, EFM, Leased lines, VPLS and MPLS services (we can start doing quotations for you now)
  • Interconnect/peering with current ISP partners
  • Interconnecting with BT Wholesale (via physical fibres) and existing carriers
  • All on-net access meaning VoIP calls from our internet products do not cross the public internet
  • Those of you that wish to host VoIP equipment with us and be physically connected, now can be
  • SLA’s when using our own connectivity products
  • New SIP security platform allowing fully encrypted SIP trunks (which is currently only available on hosted handset calls)
  • IPv6 VoIP ability
  • Broadband with no general internet access for security, allowing low cost VoIP optimised connectivity directly in to our platforms
  • New dual services using SRV records and/or two IP addresses, no more Primary and Secondary
  • Much more contracted control with less hops (try pinging/traceroute to 185.8.92.61-62 versus sip.surevoip.co.uk)
  • Connected to the core of the UK internet
  • Microsoft Lync compatible SIP trunks using new security platform (including Office365 Enterprise)
  • Members of IXScotland Steering Committee
  • New public access contacts platform available via our public LDAP servers – ldap.surevoip.co.uk – sync with LinkedIn, Google etc.
  • New portal coming for billing with call packages, partner access, per customer tariffs and discount, nice invoices with call stats and graphs which is all driven by the SureVoIP API
  • Partner access monitoring platform to monitor your customers IP networks and services

as well as all of above the following things are ongoing:

That’s a lot to digest and I’m sure you have tons of questions! We’ll keep you updated on the migration plans and new IP addresses too.

Lastly, don’t forget our opening hours for the Christmas period.

Thanks,

Gavin.