The surprising benefits of wired internet for businesses
As a modern business, the way you handle internet connectivity could substantially affect your performance. Making the wrong choice could lead to inflexibility that hinders your ability to connect in the workplace, or affect speeds and reliability, with a knock-on effect on the services you deliver to customers and clients.
Making the choice between wired and wireless business internet may seem straightforward, but it’s a more important – and hotly contested – decision than you might think. Despite ‘wifi’ now being more or less synonymous with the internet itself, wired internet still holds a multitude of surprising advantages that make it a compelling choice for businesses.
Reliability and consistency
One of the most compelling advantages of wired internet is its unparalleled reliability and consistency. Most people will have experienced this to some degree at home, with wifi blackspots preventing connections around the house, but the same issues can strike in the workplace. Unlike wireless connections that can be affected by signal interference or physical obstacles, wired connections offer a stable and consistent bandwidth.
Ensuring faultless wireless coverage across a site can be costly, and temporary interference such as adverse weather or construction work can cause disruption that is impossible to circumvent. Businesses relying on seamless video conferencing, VoIP calls, cloud-based applications or other critical online services can greatly benefit from the uninterrupted connectivity that wired internet provides.
Speed and performance
The mechanics of wireless internet mean it is always at something of a disadvantage to a wired connection. A high speed line can transmit data more quickly than it can be sent through the air, and with no possibility of disruption along the way. As a result, wired internet connections tend to offer higher speeds and lower latency (commonly known as ‘lag’) compared to wireless alternatives.
For businesses dealing with data-intensive tasks like large file transfers, video streaming, or online backups, a wired connection ensures swift and efficient performance, shaving vital minutes off of large data transfers. This is particularly crucial for maintaining productivity, and preventing frustrating speed and bandwidth bottlenecks that can hinder daily operations.
The increasing propensity for small and medium-sized businesses to suffer cyberattacks means that data security is now everyone’s business. Unlike wireless signals that can be intercepted by unauthorised parties, wired connections are more difficult to tap into without physical access to the network infrastructure.
Where criminals can potentially tap into a wireless network by standing near your site and guessing or cracking the password, breaking into a wired network requires them to physically dig up and tap into the line, not considering any end-to-end encryption they might then face. This simple decision goes a long way to safeguarding sensitive business data and confidential information from potential cyber threats.
Wireless networks can suffer from interference caused by various devices, neighbouring networks, and physical barriers. We’ve already mentioned adverse weather, which is one factor, but anything that gets in the way of or otherwise obscures a wireless signal can affect its speed, reliability and reach. That could include other wireless devices operating on similar frequencies, Bluetooth devices, walkie talkies, and even microwave ovens.
Wired connections, on the other hand, are largely immune to such interference. While adverse weather can sometimes affect exterior cables, the cables are heavily shielded against such interference, and don’t suffer from the same problems with frequency congestion. This provides a more stable and consistent experience, something that is especially advantageous for businesses operating in densely populated areas, where overlapping wifi networks might be a concern.
Scalability and network management
Contrary to popular belief, wireless internet does not immediately make it easier to manage. Wired networks offer excellent control over network management and scalability, with the capacity to easily expand wired infrastructure to accommodate growing demands. Not only are ethernet cable runs cheap and easy to install, but scaling up wired internet also doesn’t risk compromising on performance, providing an equally capable connection everywhere within the workplace.
Wired networks also enable businesses to conveniently allocate bandwidth where it’s needed most, providing more granular control over how your internet is distributed around a site compared to wifi. This helps to ensure that critical applications receive the necessary resources without impacting overall network performance.
This may be the most counter-intuitive point so far. After all, wires are the older technology, while wireless is the newer one. Yet investing in wired network infrastructure is a long-term decision that can offer benefits well into the future. While the capabilities of wireless internet are subject to regular change, the nature and capacity of wired internet is heavily future-proofed.
As technology evolves and demands for higher bandwidth increase, wired networks are better equipped to adapt to and accommodate these changes. Compare this to wifi, where newer routers introduce new wireless standards, security protocols, and other features that wired connections do not rely on. This future-proofing aspect can save businesses from having to overhaul their networking setup frequently, providing a cost-effective solution in the long run.
While setting up a wired network may involve some initial costs for cabling and installation, the overall cost-effectiveness of wired internet becomes evident over time. Wired connections generally have lower operational costs, reduced maintenance requirements, and fewer instances of downtime compared to wireless networks.
While wireless internet has undoubtedly revolutionised connectivity, the benefits of wired internet for businesses are still very much relevant and compelling. The reliability, speed, security, and scalability offered by wired connections make them an ideal choice for businesses seeking stable and efficient networking solutions.
By embracing the wired advantage, businesses can position themselves for sustained growth, productivity, and success in an increasingly connected world. To learn more about our wired internet service and how it can help your business or organisation, get in touch with us today.