Fiber-optic Advantages: Business Productivity
I often get the question “do we really need GigE?” so I spend a few hours on the Internet to try and collect some of the large users of bandwidth. The key question for a community is how many of these functions are we willing to deny our citizens? There is no disagreement that these functions will take fiber optic backbones for business, although some argue that the home does not need this capacity (now, but what about in the future?). However if you ever talk to someone that has had GigE they often say, “You don’t understand the experience until you have it and when it is gone, you miss it.”
14 Advantages of Fiber-optic Internet
1. Call Centers: As the world of services and devices evolve, the need for service and account assistance increases. The transfer and use of expertise, remote and mobile authentication and authorization to access account data, and facilitation of call centers around the world are constantly increasing.
2. Remote Workers: In the service economy, many of the tasks that we require can be performed anywhere in the world. In order to properly support these remote workers (whether permanent or occasional) we have to completely recreate the office environment which requires directly connected IT systems and ancillary assistance such as video calls and remote conversations.
3. Advertising and Marketing: Advertising and Marketing are inherently multimedia-based and can necessitate the movement of lots of materials.
4. Operations Management: (aircraft, ships, trains, cars, electrical grid, industrial processes) As all things become digital, management of daily operations will require more and more information with accuracy, security, and validation.
5. Maintenance Management: Similar to the Operations Management, the Maintenance Management will continue to move to real-time and remote based – especially as the complexity and sophistication of the equipment increases.
6. Notifications and Actions: With the rapid expansion of data, the ability to analyze and track in the conventional sense is not possible. Fortunately, with the ability to process, look for thresholds and patterns, and compare to models, modern systems allow people to still process by exception. This can be something as specific as losing the AC in a data center to informing people of traffic jams.
7. Engineering Contracting: Large contractors such as Bechtel and KBR work with extremely large files of data that define what is being built–from process flow drawings, P&I diagrams, engineering drawings, mechanical drawings, vendor documentation, and 3D and virtual models. Transferring these in a reasonable time can be problematic and since the construction of a plant is a series of questions, changes, and fixes, bandwidth is often a major factor in delays. In addition, sometimes with one company’s designs, another company builds and a third operates. If the documentation is not kept centrally, it soon gets out of sync.
8. Architect: An architect has many of the same issues as the Engineering Contractor. They deal with very large documents that have to be shared with their customers, sub-contractors, and authorities.
9. GIS Analysis: Where the previous examples had large documents, GIS products a combination of large, layered maps plus a connection to a database that attaches records to the icons on the map. Good examples of this would be firefighting or mining.
10. Legal, Image, Library Research, and Pattern Recognition: As we become more digital, we become even more dependent upon documents and research. With the variable quality of the information available, this is taxing analysis capabilities and access when, for example, everyone tries to look up a disease or medical condition. Pattern recognition will enhance the value of analysis like peer review, which indicates that the records of previous analyses need to be saved and presented as a service to sophisticated searches, in order to be able to return results in the order in which they have been ranked by peer review.
11. Software Download Updates: As Marc Andresson stated, “Software is eating the world.” Software had to be accessed, licensed, monitored and updated. When there were only a few million customers this was not impossible but as we download close to a billion (1,000,000,000) copies of complex software we are seeing scalable systems that can swamp the available broadband of a country or continent. This will be a major user of broadband.
12. Business Continuity Services: City and other civic functions are going to have to greatly expand as they modernize, partly because they are expected to take on the help of those on the other side of the digital divide. As the platform for the “has-nots”, access to broadband in many libraries is pitiful.
13. Aggregation (People): In addition, there are businesses that have many people doing nearly the same thing that can also overload a system. Examples include call centers, schools, libraries, hospitals, governments. In some cases, they are overwhelmed by having each facility with its own contract for broadband – a VERY expensive way to increase bandwidth.
14. Aggregation (Functions): In an interview with one of the large Silicon Valley law firms, they responded to a bandwidth question, “We do have a mix of video, audio, VoIP, databases, e-mail, Internet surfing and client access to extranets that fill several hundred megabytes throughout the business day. We plan to push video to the desktop as well in the next six months.”
This is a key point: people do not do just one thing, they do all of those things and more. There are many uses of high bandwidth, but the key ones are (in addition to those named above) VOIP, Telepresence, Back Office, Web, and Cloud. The point is that even if broadband capacity is adequate for some of these functions, that does not work for businesses that have many people and devices. Learn more about getting fiber to your business today.