Thursday, June 09, 2011

Ethernet Now Faster and Cheaper Than T1

For years, even a couple of decades, T1 lines have been the go-to professional bandwidth service for small and medium businesses. They are the most popular digital connection for good reasons. T1 lines are available, reliable, secure, dedicated, flexible and relatively inexpensive. What’s not to like?

Compare Ethernet to T1 for speed and cost. Click to get prices for your location.Agreed. There’s a lot to like about T1 services. But how would you like to get even more for your money? If so, then you need to take a close look at Ethernet, especially Ethernet over Copper.

Not everyone is familiar with the newer Carrier Ethernet services. They’ve only been available for a few years and the big rush has been just recently. Ethernet over Copper, EoC, is primarily a service you find in large metropolitan areas and not in smaller towns or out in the country. It has a distance limitation. You need to be within a few miles of the service provider’s office to qualify for service. Even so, there are millions of business locations that could be served by Ethernet instead of T1. So why aren’t they?

Good question. I suspect that it is more a matter of awareness than anything else. Companies that use T1 line services know the pricing and availability. They also know that prices have been coming down so they can get great renewal pricing, especially on 3 year contracts. What they don’t know is that they can get even more bandwidth for the same pricing with Ethernet over Copper.

It’s incredible, but true. Both T1 and Ethernet cost less than $300 a month in many areas. The difference is that T1 bandwidth is fixed at 1.5 Mbps. Ethernet will give you 2 Mbps, known as 2x2 Ethernet, or 3 Mbps, known as 3x3 Ethernet, depending on the service provider for your particular location.

Yes, you can also get T1 service at 3 Mbps to match the 3x3 Ethernet bandwidth. One T1 line will get you 1.5 Mbps only, so the way this is done is to combine or “bind” two T1 lines to get 3 Mbps. The only problem is that you now have to pay twice as much because each T1 line has a cost and there is no economy of scale.

Ethernet is not only lower cost than T1, but it offers more bandwidth that is also more scalable. You can order Ethernet over Copper starting at 1 Mbps. Common speed increments include 2 Mbps, 3 Mbps, 5 Mbps, 10 Mbps, 15 Mbps and 20 Mbps. It’s possible to get other intermediate speeds, too. Binding T1 lines tops out at around 12 Mbps because of both the technology involved and the sheer cost of all those individual lines.

Ethernet keeps on going. You can easily get 10 or 20 Mbps Ethernet service, with 40 Mbps and even 100 Mbps available in some metro areas. Those connections are made over the same type of twisted pair copper wiring that is used to deliver T1. The higher speeds even rival entry level fiber optic services that may be expensive to install.

Are you considering a bandwidth increase or simply want to know if you can get a better bandwidth deal? Get pricing and availability of both Ethernet and T1 line service and see what makes the most sense for your business.

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

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