When it comes to outlaying expenses for business, you need to know that you are getting something that will offer you long-term financial benefits. And one of the most critical elements of the modern business is internet connectivity.
Business Fibre or LTE?
If you’ve done some research into South African internet solutions, you’ve undoubtedly discovered the terms ‘fibre’ and ‘LTE’, however, you might still be considering which option is best for your business. Here is a look at what each internet solution offers you.
What is business fibre?
Business Fibre essentially transmits data along a glass fibre optic cable that is installed into the ground and connects with various homes and businesses worldwide. Fibre works by emitting and receiving a light signal through the cables using a binary code. While fibre is the predominant internet option in most of the advanced world, South Africa is now catching up as fibre is rolled out countrywide.
Read more: Business Telecoms
What is LTE?
LTE stands for ‘Long-Term Evolution’ and exists as an entirely wireless broadband solution with mobility. It is not exactly 4G (fourth generation) connectivity, but somewhere between 3G and 4G offering users increased internet speeds via mobile devices.
What are the benefits of fibre?
- Speed: when it comes to internet connectivity, you can’t beat fibre for speed. Because fibre cables are thinner, lighter and more durable than the previous ADSL lines, data is able to travel at light speed – up to 100 times faster than ADSL.
- Bandwidth: fibre offers incredibly high bandwidth for businesses which means things like we conferencing, streaming, file sharing and cloud applications are significantly improved.
- Reliability: fibre is not impacted by increased traffic, they are not susceptible to theft, electromagnetic interference or even weathering.
- Security: the glass cables are almost impossible to hack making fibre a much more secure transference method for sensitive data.
- Cost savings: the enhanced speed and reliability make fibre a much more cost-effective solution for business in the long-run.
What are the benefits of LTE?
- Availability: LTE is readily available to the majority of South African users which means that, for businesses located where fibre isn’t yet installed, LTE is a current option.
- Speed: because of its mobility, LTE is more prone to external factors such as weather and distance, but it still has impressive connectivity speeds of up to 50Mbps.
- Mobility: if your business calls for flexibility in location, then LTE is the perfect internet solution for you.
- No installation: if you’re renting a business space and your landlord doesn’t want fibre lines installed, then LTE is the best option as it’s completely wireless.
What to look out for with LTE
- Contracts: if you’re keen on investing in LTE as a short-term business solution, then beware which supplier you partner with as some will insist on a 24-month contract. In the current technological age, 2 years is a long time considering the speed of advancement in connectivity.
- Location: with wireless, location is everything. This means that the internet speed you’re getting will depend on how far you are from the nearest broadcasting tower as well as the weather conditions.
- Unpredictability: with LTE, there’s no way to control the number of people using a tower at any given time, so speeds are unpredictable.
So, which is better for business?
Fibre is undoubtedly the fastest, most reliable internet connection for business, but in South Africa it isn’t as readily available across the country as LTE. LTE is the perfect short-term solution if you’re waiting for fibre installation. It also works really well for more mobile businesses without a fixed location, or for those businesses that don’t necessarily need high-speed internet constantly.
ECN is a leading telecommunications partner in South Africa. ECN offers a broad set of cost effective voice, data and hosted services to meet our customers ever growing technological needs. Our market leading fibre solutions provide our customers with the option of replacing their existing voice service provider to substantially reduce their monthly telecommunications bill. Contact ECN today for leading telecommunications solutions.