Are we approaching the zettabyte era?

Posted on Oct 14 2014 | Make a comment

Bandwidth consumption is growing at a pretty amazing rate as we utilise the Internet’s protocol either publicly or privately more and more throughout our daily lives. Forecasters predict emerging trends such as M2M (machine to machine), the ‘Internet of Things’ and ‘wearable devices’ will fuel that ever increasing demand for bandwidth even further.

Paul Heritage Redpath1 Are we approaching the zettabyte era?

Paul Heritage-Redpath, Product Manager

In its latest Visual Networking Index Forecast, Cisco predicts over 1.4 zettabytes of data will be flowing over global networks by 2017. It’s easy to see how this immense amount of data could be reached when you consider that, according to Nielsen’s law of Internet Bandwidth, users’ bandwidth grows by 50% per year (10% less than Moore’s Law) and Cisco predicts around 3.6 billion people are expected to be online by 2017 (up from 2.3 billion currently).

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Is broadband still suitable for business use?

Posted on Oct 07 2014 | Make a comment

A recent survey by the Citizen’s Advice Bureau found that over the past 12 months 30% of small businesses have experienced problems with their phone and broadband services leaving them unsatisfied. So we ask, is broadband still suitable for business use?

Stephen Barclay Is broadband still suitable for business use?

Stephen Barclay, Head of Sales

Gillian Guy, CEO of the Citizen’s Advice Bureau said “Poor broadband services are costing small firms business…A reliable broadband service is essential for firms to be able to operate.” The research found that almost 25% of small businesses have complained about service problems with 92% of complaints focusing on stability problems or total loss of service.

However, at the end of the day there is only so much that can be done to improve the broadband service for SMEs, after all by its nature broadband is a contended service with no service guarantees or SLAs and its performance is dependent on many factors such as internal wiring, distance from the exchange etc.

That being said, Ofcom have launched their own plans to improve the provision of broadband services for SMEs. Their own data showed more positive results, stating that 85% of SMEs believe they are well served by the UK market but there are still issues and Ofcom hopes its new plan will make high quality digital communications more accessible to SMEs.

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Is broadband’s bargain basement pricing to blame?

Posted on Oct 01 2014 | Make a comment

The ‘superfast broadband’ rollout has regularly come under fire for its focus on utilising FTTC rather than FTTP/H to deliver superfast services to 100% of the UK population by 2017, but is the lack of FTTP coverage simply due to the ongoing rock bottom price war we are seeing across the broadband market?

Steve.Lalonde e1404835994407 Is broadband’s bargain basement pricing to blame?

Steve Lalonde, Chief Technical Officer

While FTTC delivers superfast broadband speeds to its customers of up to 80Mbps, critics argue that this is not future-proof enough to accommodate our ever increasing demands and we should be aiming to implement FTTP which delivers speeds of up to 330Mbps. However, FTTP coverage is currently very limited and the initial target of delivering the service to 2.5 million premises was cut back in 2013, due to its expensive and more difficult installation.

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Digital karma strikes for U2!

Posted on Sep 17 2014 | Make a comment

Way waaay back in 2010 U2 frontman Bono annoyed many within the industry with his ranting warnings about the ‘evils of the Internet’ and he put the blame firmly in the hands of us ‘greedy ISP types.’

darren farnden Digital karma strikes for U2!

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

He was of course talking about piracy stating “A decade’s worth of music file-sharing and swiping has made clear that the people it hurts are the creators — in this case, the young, fledgling songwriters who can’t live off ticket and T-shirt sales like the least sympathetic among us — and the people this reverse Robin Hooding benefits are rich service providers, whose swollen profits perfectly mirror the lost receipts of the music business.” “Rich service providers” and “swollen profits”- we wish!

In response we, amongst other ISPs and industry bodies, argued that rather than blame the Internet for the downfall of their industry and continue to fight against it, artists should embrace the opportunities it can bring and utilise it to help distribute and promote their work. After all, the Internet is just the latest vehicle for piracy and copyright infringement – kids had been recording direct from the radio and duplicating tapes long before the days of the World Wide Web! However, despite our best efforts, our advice appeared to go unheard and the debate continued on.

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Balancing privacy and security

Posted on Sep 09 2014 | Make a comment

We recently discussed the hastily brought in DRIP (Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Act) and our dismay at the lack of consultation, debate and scrutiny this new law faced despite its impact on every UK citizen’s privacy. Now that the dust has settled and further information has emerged, let’s inspect the new law more closely and discuss its impact…

Neil Watson Balancing privacy and security

Neil Watson, Head of Service Operations

What is DRIP and why is it needed?

Following the ECJ’s ruling back in April that existing EU laws governing data retention were invalid due to their lack of safeguards to protect citizens privacy, our Government (in their infinite wisdom) rushed through a so called “emergency” law called DRIP. DRIP ensures that communications providers are still legally required to collect and store data and provide this data to our police and security services when necessary. The Government argued that, without DRIP, communications providers would have been forced to ‘delete’ such data in compliance with existing data protection laws and therefore the security services and police would have lost access to this information permanently with suggested serious repercussions in the fight against terrorism and serious crime.

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