The connectivity scale part one: Where does broadband end and Ethernet begin?

Posted on Apr 08 2013 by Stephen Barclay | 1 Comment
Stephen Barclay, Head of Sales

Stephen Barclay, Head of Sales

Just when you think you’ve got to grips with all the latest connectivity technologies, their features and how to confidently sell them, another one emerges!

With the launch of GEA (Generic Ethernet Access) you could be forgiven for being confused as to where broadband connectivity ends and Ethernet based connectivity begins. So, in this two part article we thought a little clarification of the key differentiators may be useful.

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Looking back over 2012

Posted on Dec 13 2012 by Elsa Chen | Comments Off on Looking back over 2012

Well 2012 was certainly a great year for the Brits. The eyes of the world were watching as we celebrated the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and played host to a magnificent celebration of sporting talent with the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic games, where we actually did pretty well. But, moving back to business, what happened in 2012 that affected the IT industry? Here is a little reminder of this year’s key events, debates and market trends.

Elsa Chen, General Manager

Elsa Chen, General Manager

Superfast broadband

This seems to have filled the industry news on a weekly basis this year. If it’s not the Government’s targets and deadlines or latest plans to provide super connected cities and obtain more EU funding, its progress updates on the various BDUK projects that are going on across the country. Whilst most of us are pleased with the development of superfast broadband in the UK there has still been a lot of debate around the details.

Firstly, the Government’s announcement of further funding to support ‘super connected cities’ caused concern that they were focussing too much on urban areas and not attempting to solve the digital divide that already exists. Whilst we applaud their efforts to roll out superfast broadband (in this case up to 100Mbps) we agree with many of the critics that more focus needs to be placed on areas currently struggling on sub 2Mbps speeds. A large number of businesses within these city locations are already taking advantage of high end connectivity through services such as Ethernet.

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Update: ASA broadband guidelines – What will it mean for resellers?

Posted on Nov 02 2012 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on Update: ASA broadband guidelines – What will it mean for resellers?

As of Thursday, all British mobile operators will be forced to comply with the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) guidelines designed to prevent misleading mobile speeds being advertised.

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

The guidelines have already been in place for some time now for fixed-line broadband providers and are now applicable to mobile operators following a 3 month notice period.

The guidelines operate in much the same way as for fixed-line providers whereby speeds should only be advertised if 10% of their customer base can achieve the speed, whilst also being “clearly explained” to customers. However, the further difficultly mobile operators face is that they must make speed calculations based on the various locations users access the services.

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Will Superfast broadband really save the UK economy?

Posted on Aug 23 2012 by Neil Watson | 2 Comments

For years now successive Governments have promoted the importance of superfast broadband in the UK and its expected impact on the growth of the UK economy. They believe this mantra so much that they have invested over £530million (rising to £830 million by 2017) to ensure we have the best broadband network in Europe by 2015 with a further £150 million invested for super-connected cities, £150 million for the mobile infrastructure project, £32million announced a few months ago for Scotland and a potential £20million in a Rural Community Broadband Fund. But will this hefty investment into broadband really save the UK economy?

Neil Watson, Head of Service Operations

Neil Watson, Head of Service Operations

Well the Government certainly thinks so and so do a number of other interested stakeholders including BT (who have also invested heavily into the availability of superfast broadband across the UK) and the Federation of Small Business (FSB). John Walker, National Chairman, FSB said: “Online trading has helped to empower small businesses to find new markets, sell new products, try new models and compete on an equal footing with larger businesses. Online trade has great potentials for small businesses but it still has its barriers. These must be removed. The biggest obstacle for many small businesses is the lack of broadband speeds and so as a result they cannot compete online.”

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World IPv6 Day – reason enough for an extra Bank Holiday?

Posted on Jun 01 2012 by Steve Lalonde | Comments Off on World IPv6 Day – reason enough for an extra Bank Holiday?
Categories : Business, IPv6, Wholesale

June 6th 2012 is World IPv6 Day – the day a number of high profile Internet related companies turn IPv6 on for good. Last year they did a test run and all went well, so this year it’s for real. Leading companies such as Facebook, Google, AT&T, Cisco and D-Link amongst others have been working towards this deadline to make sure their products, services and websites are fully compatible and able to support IPv6. Sounds like a good excuse for another celebratory Bank Holiday!

Steve Lalonde, Chief Technical Officer

Steve Lalonde, Chief Technical Officer

What about IPv4?

Just because a number of companies are switching to IPv6 permanently does not mean that IPv4 will cease to work or the Internet will crash, as a few scaremongering reports may have us believe. Everything will continue to work as it always has done. However, this is an important event for the future of Internet access. IPv4 addresses have almost completely run out now and a replacement in the form of IPv6 is required urgently. IPv6 addresses will provide significantly more potential addresses as they use 128 bit displayed in hexadecimal format and separated by colons e.g. 2ffe:1800:3525:3:200:f8ff:fe21:67cf, as opposed to IPv4 which uses 32 bit addresses. This means IPv6 has 2128 possible addresses compared to 232 that IPv4 was able to provide. However, the switchover to IPv6 will not be instant and, over the next few years, the Internet will use and support both IPv4 and IPv6.

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The net neutrality black list

Posted on Oct 20 2011 by Neil Watson | Comments Off on The net neutrality black list

In the UK and across most of Europe we have no legislation to protect net neutrality, the principle of treating all traffic equally on the Internet. The reason for the lack of legislation is because most parties within the industry believe it is unnecessary and can be managed through self regulation and voluntary codes. However, two civil groups, La Quadrature du Net (France) and Bits for Freedom (Netherlands) disagree and have introduced a new website via which citizens can report any net neutrality violations.

Neil Watson, Head of Service Operations

Neil Watson, Head of Service Operations

The main concern with regards to net neutrality revolves around ISPs using their traffic management strategies to give priority to certain content providers who pay a premium, or alternatively blocking or restricting the performance of content from rival organisations or content providers that have not paid the ISP. For example, a mobile provider could restrict content from Skype or if an ISP had an agreement with the BBC they could prioritise their traffic over rival content providers. Such agreements could stifle creativity and lead to a tiered Internet.

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ASA broadband guidelines – What will it mean for resellers?

Posted on Oct 03 2011 by Darren Farnden | 3 Comments

The ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) and CAP (Committee of Advertising Practice) have released their guidelines for the advertising of broadband speeds and ‘unlimited’ broadband packages, which will come into effect from 1st April 2012. We discuss the details of the guidelines, the likely impact on end users and for the industry, and what they will entail for resellers.

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

Broadband speeds
Let’s look at broadband speeds first. Currently, the usual practice is for ISPs to advertise the speed of the broadband service based on an ‘up to’ maximum speed achievable by that technology (e.g. ‘up to 24Mbps’ for ADSL2+ or ‘up to 40Mbps’ for FTTC). These headline speeds are supported by disclaimers (in small print), which explain that the actual speed achievable is dependent on the quality and length of the line. At the point of order the end user is then given further information based on their telephone number, which details the access technologies available to them (e.g. ADSL, ADSL2+ or FTTC) and the likely maximum speed they will be able to achieve.

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Social Media Marketing: All hype or here to stay?

Posted on Sep 22 2011 by Darren Farnden | 2 Comments

If you’re like most people, you’re already on Facebook; at least have a Twitter account, even if you’ve not tweeted; and maybe even maintain a professional profile on LinkedIn. Are you using them though to help you grow your business? We must receive more than five emails a day from experts claiming to be able to boost our sales through a proactive social media marketing strategy.

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

There can be no denying that social media is making a big impact. Facebook now has over 750million registered users worldwide and Twitter has 200million. Meanwhile, LinkedIn is said to now have over 100million members and after its recent launch, Google already claims to have 20million on Google+. If we include video in social media, YouTube exceeds 2billion views a day, has 24hours of video uploaded every minute and is available in 24 languages and across 22 countries.  Impressive stats!

Even the Government has realised the power of social media networks over recent weeks, with David Cameron investigating ways to stop criminality and violence being organised via these sites in response to the recent riots. Easier said than done I’m sure and that’s another topic.

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HELP! – 999 emergencies and VoIP

Posted on Jun 22 2011 by Darren Farnden | 3 Comments

Are you aware that Ofcom recently extended its General Condition 4 to cover VoIP services which means that, like traditional telecoms (PSTN and ISDN providers) and mobile operators, VoIP providers now need to provide the emergency services with location information for the users of their VoIP services?

Jon Farmer, Voice Technical Lead

Jon Farmer, Voice Technical Lead

The problem is that it’s not as simple as you might think. The flexible nature of VoIP is one of its biggest selling points. But it also means that the location of the end user can easily and quickly change, which means location information held by the provider can quickly become out of date and useless to the emergency services. This has been an area of debate among VoIP industry players for many years.

The reforms to Ofcom’s General Condition 4 have forced VoIP providers to act and Entanet has been amongst the first to do so, working to develop a new, secure and brand-neutral website (www.999-location.co.uk), via which end users can easily update their location information for each VoIP number they use. In addition, we have even created a short animated video to demonstrate the importance of keeping this information up to date to end users.

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Poll: ISPA Awards 2011 Villain of the year – who would you vote for?

Posted on Jun 07 2011 by Claire Dutton-Merrills | Comments Off on Poll: ISPA Awards 2011 Villain of the year – who would you vote for?

Recently, the UK Internet Service Providers Association (ISPA) officially announced the finalists for its 2011 Internet Hero and Internet Villain awards. Both categories recognise those who have either done the most or least to help the Internet Industry. This year, ISPA’s finalists are:

Internet Hero Finalists

  • Rory Stewart MP – For his trailblazing efforts to bring broadband to his rural constituency of Penrith and the Borders
  • Twitter – For its role in helping people communicate during the Arab spring
  • Judge Colin Birss QC – For his considered and damning judgement on the ACS Law that it was “chaotic and lamentable”
  • The Australian Internet Industry Association – For taking the lead and launching a voluntary industry code on infected machines in Australia
  • Prof. Ian Hargreaves – For authoring a review that makes recommendations on how IP can be made fitter for the digital age
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