Thursday, February 17, 2011

Integrated Access Using Ethernet over Copper

T1 lines are generally set up as either broadband data pipes or digital telephone trunks. Having to buy separate T1 lines for voice and data proved to be too pricey for many smaller businesses that wanted the robustness of T1 line services but didn’t really need all the capability of a two line arrangement. The solution was Integrated T1. It’s a combination of voice and data on a single T1 line. Integrated T1 has been a problem solver for small businesses over the years, but now there’s an even more cost effective service available. It’s Integrated access using Ethernet over Copper.

Compare Integrated Access using Ethernet over Copper to see if it can reduce your telecom costs.Ethernet over Copper, or EoC, is coming on strong as a competitor for the same needs as T1 lines. Both services are provisioned on common twisted pair copper telco wiring that is likely already in place for most businesses. Both are highly reliable telecom services with dedicated, not shared, bandwidth. So, why would you pick one solution over another?

In many markets you’ll find that T1 and EoC now cost roughly the same. But look closer and you’ll see that for the same price T1 is giving you 1.5 Mbps and Ethernet over Copper is delivering 2 Mbps and sometimes 3 Mbps. You can trade up for more bandwidth on both T1 and EoC by bonding-in additional copper pair. But the cost of those extra T1 lines goes up a lot faster than Ethernet bandwidth increases.

Now, let’s look at how Integrated voice and data is achieved. Dynamic integrated T1 lines are the latest incarnation of the T1 Integrated service. Bandwidth is assigned by default to broadband access. Anytime a phone line is requested, the bandwidth needed for that phone call takes priority and is protected for the duration of the call. This is the dynamic nature of the service. The bandwidth you have available for broadband is a function of what’s left over after all the telephone calls in progress are taken care of. When someone hangs up, that bandwidth is immediately put back in the broadband bandwidth pool.

In practice, Integrated T1 is a good service if you need 12 or fewer outside phone lines. More than this and your broadband Internet service will be creeping along at less than 750 Kbps. But integrated Access using Ethernet over Copper offers more phone lines and higher broadband speeds. A common EoC service running at 10 Mbps has lots of bandwidth for both. You may be able to get as many as 46 phone lines on EoC, which is equivalent to two full ISDN PRI trunks. In fact, this service delivers its phone lines with a PRI handoff to your PBX telephone system. You may also be able to choose an analog handoff for smaller phone systems or SIP handoff to your newer IP PBX in-house telephone system.

How much of your 10 Mbps will 46 phone lines eat up? That depends on what CODEC you are using, but let’s say it is G.711, the international standard. Figuring on 80 Kbps per call with overhead, a figure used by many SIP bandwidth calculators (Cisco uses 87.2 Kbps), that adds up to around 4 Mbps. That leaves you over 6 Mbps for broadband access, similar to what many companies are using now.

No need to stop there, though. Ethernet over Copper is often available in the same locations at bandwidths of 15 Mbps and 20 Mbps. This is far higher than is practical or even affordable with T1 lines. Are you running a larger company network or a call center that needs much higher capacity? It’s likely time to consider Ethernet over Fiber, or EoF. At this point you are probably running a converged voice and data network and can benefit from SIP trunking based on SIP switching for enterprise VoIP telephone systems.

What voice and data bandwidth solutions are best for your operation? There is a wide range of service suitable for the smallest mom and pop grocery stores right on up to Fortune 500 corporations. Why not let an expert telecom service broker get a complete list of services and pricing to meet your particular needs? Request a voice and data bandwidth quote now to see what’s available for your business locations.

Click to check pricing and features or get support from a Telarus product specialist.

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