Thursday, 27 March 2014

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Low Speed High-Speed Roll-Out

I've had the same email address for 12 years, this means I get a huge amount number of spam emails newsletters.

Amongst the many I receive, one that I quite enjoy reading on occasion is the Canterbury4Business newsletter which often contains some really interesting stuff. To be honest, mostly I find it interesting because it reminds me how glad I am that I'm not a politician. Going round and round in circles on endless consultations and working on initiatives that turn out to have no real substance would drive me totally insane.

But, today one local talking point caught my attention - the current lack of high-speed internet in the city centre.

This is one topic that I do feel motivated to wade in on both since it effects my business but also, I believe has a very detrimental effect on the potential for business growth in the area as a whole. The thing is, high-speed internet (FTC) has rolled out across most of Canterbury now. Pretty much all the residential areas are covered but there seems to be a barren wasteland of connectivity in the city centre itself. I have no idea why this is, if the residential areas are covered the infrastructure is
clearly here, there must be something else blocking the roll-out.

Anyway, why is this important?

Quite simply, faster, more reliable internet access enables businesses to work in a more modern,
dynamic and efficient way and therefore the lack of availability of these technologies in our area puts local businesses at a significant disadvantage to our national and international competitors.

To give you an example, lets look at network infrastructure - the diagram below shows a fairly typical network setup for a small business:

The problem with this setup is that it's hugely reliant on the operation of the various servers. Risks can be reduced by introducing redundancy - backup servers and mirroring but it's expensive and time consuming.

With high speed broadband however it's feasible to operate a studio more like this:
By replacing all those internal servers with cloud-based services you not only save thousands in hardware costs but also increase data redundancy and simplify management massively. They only thing you need to add in to the mix is some redundancy in your internet connectivity but this is easily solved with a backup ADSL and a 3G dongle fro the worst-case scenario.

So, there you go! Why do we need high-speed internet in the city centre? Because it will save businesses thousands and allow them to concentrate on creating thriving, interesting businesses and not spend valuable time worrying about bullshit IT issues.


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