How to Choose a Fiber Provider
Find out everything you need to know about fiber Internet and how to choose a fiber optic Internet provider.
The Internet connection you choose plays a major role in your business as it impacts everything from employee productivity to customer satisfaction. While standard Internet is enough for most small companies, fiber Internet providers can help businesses of all sizes take things to the next level. To ensure it’s the right move for your company, here’s what to keep in mind.
What’s the Difference Between Standard and Fiber Internet?
A fiber optic service (also known as fiber Internet) will differ from a standard business Internet plan in structure, reliability, speed, customization and more. Here’s a closer look:
Standard Internet is typically transmitted through a coaxial cable (the same technology as cable TV). Fiber Internet is more advanced, using flexible strands of glass or plastic to transmit data as light. This means fiber latency (the total time it takes for data to travel) is lower than standard Internet. The fiber structure also allows digital information to be communicated over long distances.
Symmetrical vs Asymmetrical Speeds
In general, standard business Internet connections offer asymmetrical speeds ranging from 50 to 1,000 Megabits per second (Mbps), which is sufficient for most small businesses.
Fiber optic Internet speed is symmetrical, giving you equally fast upload and download speeds starting at 2 Gbps and can reach up to 100 Gbps with a dedicated fiber connection. This is essential for large businesses with more than 30 users due to compatible upload and download speeds. Whether streaming high-definition video of live events or accommodating a virtual workforce, upload speed is a critical component to seamless operation.
Most standard Internet plans come with set upload and download speeds. Fiber optic Internet providers allow businesses to customize bandwidth (amount of data) and purchase as needed. Whether you need symmetrical speeds for increased upstream bandwidth, or you need more of one than the other, you can adapt your bandwidth with a fiber optic connection.
Generally, standard Internet plans require you to commit to a contract for a given amount of time, which may limit your ability to modify services as your company evolves. Most fiber Internet providers allow for flexible billing, so as businesses grow, and their needs evolve—even if only temporarily—they can add additional bandwidth as needed without making major changes to their configurations.
Service Level Agreements (SLAs)
Fiber Internet providers offer robust SLAs to ensure your business receives the highest level of service and the speeds promised by your plan. Since standard Internet shares broadband, consistent speeds and reliability can’t be promised.
What Type of Fiber Internet Plans are Offered?
Most fiber Internet providers offer tailored solutions for midsize and enterprise-level businesses with multiple locations or 20-100+ employees. In addition, small businesses may also have specific needs that require them to consider a fiber connection versus standard Internet.
Generally, most businesses need fiber Internet plans with speeds up to 2 Gbps, guaranteed uptimes and around the clock technical support. For those with more complex needs that require even faster speeds, dedicated fiber Internet, also called dedicated Internet access (DIA), offers symmetrical connections up to 100 Gbps.
How Much Does Fiber Internet Cost?
The value fiber Internet delivers has long offset the cost, and it’s become more affordable as availability increases. Midsize and enterprise-level businesses with higher bandwidth, security and reliability demands will increase their return on investment in the form of both short and long-term gains. While specific fiber Internet costs will depend on your location, plan and fiber Internet provider, its customization and robust advantages make it a cost-effective investment for any large or growing business.
What Type of Equipment Does Fiber Internet Require?
The equipment needed for most fiber connections will differ from what’s used for standard Internet plans. You’ll need a fiber optic router in order to receive the fastest speeds. This equipment can’t be purchased online or at your local electronic store. Most fiber Internet providers will also give you the option of either leasing or renting a fiber Internet router.
How Is Fiber Internet Installed?
Your fiber services must be connected directly to your internal systems, which likely requires professional installation by a technician. Some providers may offer self-installation options for less complex setups.
Once you’re signed up for service, contact your service provider to determine the fiber Internet installation required. For professional installations, make sure to choose a date and time when you’re readily available as the technician will need access to the inside and outside of your business.
Does Fiber Internet Have Higher Security?
Fiber security is higher than with standard Internet because of the way it transmits digital information. With a fiber optic connection, data can move nearly as fast as the speed of light. The average hacker will have difficulty tapping into these communications and retrieving data.
What Are Key Considerations for Dedicated Internet Access?
Dedicated Internet Access is a private connection that isn’t shared with other customers, companies or neighboring residents. Ideal for enterprise businesses looking to simultaneously connect multiple locations, this fiber service has symmetrical upload and download speeds up to 100 Gbps.
Adding a dedicated connection to your fiber Internet plan allows your business to bypass Internet traffic, reduce network congestion and avoid unexpected downtime. With a dedicated line, your organization can scale speeds and bandwidth to support mission-critical applications and core business functions – a crucial solution for companies with complex needs or multiple locations. Additionally, enterprise-grade SLAs guarantee 24/7 professional support, offering you peace of mind.
For businesses in need of an Internet connection that can meet demands with fast speeds and reliable service, fiber is the best choice. Keep your employees connected, optimize productivity and receive fast speeds over long distances with a fiber Internet provider.
What can Fiber Internet do for your business?
Take productivity to the next level with symmetrical upload and download connections up to 2 Gbps on shared fiber business Internet.