If you have a business, whether large or small, internet access is probably a necessity. There are few jobs out there that do not take advantage of the instant access to information that the internet provides. If you decide to get internet for your office, dial-up is not adequate. You want your business to be as efficient as possible, and sitting around waiting for the internet to connect is not efficient.
For telecommunications, businesses will often use T-carrier service for multi-office networking. T-carrier is a general name for any digitally multiplexed carrier system. T-carrier systems were originally designed to carry voice signals, but now are used to transmit data as well. Two types of lines used for business internet access are T1 lines and T3 lines. Both lines are reversed circuits that operate over both traditional copper cables and newer fiber optic cables. T1 and T3 lines are usually rented or leased by businesses to connect different branches to each other. These lines are more expensive than traditional DSL or cable connections, so most individuals do not use them.
T1 lines cost around $1,000 per month and have the same speed as symmetric DSL, 1.544 Mbps. T3 lines cost approximately $3,000 per month and have a speed of 44.736 Mbps.
Cable vs. T1
When choosing between cable or a T1 internet connection line for your business, it's important to consider a few things. Cable and T1 are both considered broadband with a connection of over 200K. Cable connections are sold in packages and priced according to connection speed by the cable companies. A T1 connection is a fixed connection between you and the provider, not shared like cable, and stays around 1.544 Mbps.
The advantages of cable include getting a custom package for your needs, a simple set up, and sometimes a bargain if you combine it with other services like phone and television. But, T1 has its own advantages like giving you your own connection so you don't have to worry about network outages or the headache of a slow and busy connection. Along with that, cable opens you up to hackers but T1 will cost you more and require more maintenance.
T1 vs. T3 vs. T4
Yes, there are also T4 lines available. When debating between T3 and T4, you need to consider how much bandwitdh you need and how much you're willing to spend. Both require fiber optics, whereas T1 is carried over a normal copper line, so T3 and T4 are easier to install.
A T1 line is equal to 24 phone lines. This type of line is generally used by small business for their networks and web pages from their own servers. A T3 line is equal to 28 T1 lines and usually used for large businesses that need a great amount of dedicated bandwidth for only their networks or for internet connections to their servers. T1 and T3 are used by most medium-sized businesses. At the top of the internet heap is the T4 line, which is equal to six T3 lines. This type is used by major corporations like Sprint.
Why use T-Carrier Service?
Okay, so T-carrier service is expensive. So why would you use it for business internet access instead of DSL? The main reason is that it is more reliable. It is less likely to go down than DSL or cable and when it does, due to a quality of service agreement signed by your company and the provider, you will get fast service, usually within a couple hours. That quick service for technical problems can save your business money in the long run.
The T-carrier service is also dedicated. Only your business is using the line, rather than sharing it with the neighborhood, which makes your internet faster and more secure. You can also use T-carrier service for both your internet and your phone service at the same time, which could save you money in the long run.