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Why is business broadband more expensive?

Why is business broadband more expensive?

Why is business broadband more expensive? Many small business owners ask us when comparing a business broadband line to a residential one.There are a number of factors which can affect this, but here’s some of the main reasons to consider:

 

Quality not Quantity

Unlike home broadband which is designed to be as cheap as possible to the end user, a business broadband line is more about quality and reliability. After all, no business owner would want their company to lose internet access at a critical part of the day, or for it to slow down when there are more households online. So a business broadband line, first and foremost, is always about delivering good quality and higher reliability to the business customer. This does mean however, that the price of a connection is higher than for a home broadband.

 

Higher support levels

When things go wrong, as they invariably do, a business customer wants them resolving as soon as possible. Whilst it might be ok for a home broadband user to be without the internet for a day, a business user would potentially loose thousands of pounds in lost revenue, and their company could just grind to a halt. So the support level for a business broadband line is usually higher in order to ensure a business user has their problems fixed quickly.  Support levels for business users are usually same day or next day depending on the care level you pay for, whereas a home broadband would just have a basic level of support.

 

Fixed IP address

Many businesses have servers and other devices they need to access from outside of their premises. Therefore in order to access these devices reliably every time, they need a fixed public IP address.  Home users generally dont have servers at home that they need to access from outside, but businesses usually need to access their email, files, work from other locations etc. So they need to connect to the same IP address every single time.

 

Prioritised Traffic

A lot of business broadband connections offer prioritised traffic. This could mean that voice traffic, video calls, emails, etc take precedence over web browsing or playing music. By shaping the traffic on the broadband you provide a much better experience for the customer, especially if you are making telephone calls over a broadband connection using VoIP.

 

Do the Maths

As yourself – could your business afford to be offline for more than a day? How much business revenue would you lose if your broadband is down? Having a slightly more expensive broadband that gave you a higher quality, more reliable connection soon seems to be a good investment when considering what would happen if you had an unreliable one.  So for a business user its important to have a better quality connection that doesnt go wrong, but if it does there is always someone on hand to fix the fault quickly and efficiently.

 

Choosing the right supplier

Here at Nxcoms, we pride ourselves on giving our business customers the best quality and most reliable broadband possible. If things go wrong we understand the implications this may have on your business so we strive to get problems rectified in a quick and efficient manner. All our clients have a named contact who can address their issues and ensure that their broadband is working at its optimum level. If you are currently finding your broadband is not reliable or not fast enough for your needs, then why not contact us for help?

Why is your broadband slow?

Why is your broadband slow?

Why is your broadband slow? A lot of people have been asking that question recently as they have adjusted to working from home during the Covid-19 crisis. Here we hope to answer a few of the reasons why you may be experiencing slow broadband.

The reasons for a slow broadband connection can be divided into internal issues, such as wi-fi or router, and external issues such as a fault with your supplier.  So here’s a run down of the things you should check if you are experiencing a slow internet connection.

 

Internal Issues

 

Wi-Fi issues

If you use wi-fi to connect to the internet, you may find that the speed of your connection isnt the actual problem, but instead its the speed of your wi-fi.  The weaker the signal, the slower the wi-fi speed, so its important to get a stronger signal as possible. Your computer, tablet or phone will usually give you a graphical indication of the wi-fi strength so you can move your device around to get the best response. The most ideal location of your router is in a central location above head height with a clear line of sight to your device. However whilst this might be possible in an open plan office, you cant always do this in a home environment. So try placing your broadband router as high as possible, if its on the floor then try putting it on a table or shelf for example.

If you are in a different room to your wi-fi router, then you may benefit from a signal booster. There are many wi-fi signal boosters that can plug straight into a UK mains socket and they are easy to set up, usually with the push of a button.

 

Old or out of date router

If you have an old router then this may also be a cause of a less than optimum internet connection.  From time to time, broadband providers usually send updates to routers to improve their efficiency and also to keep up with any new technologies on the line.  You may find that an old router which hasn’t been updated just cant keep up with newer broadband specifications which have been released. So a newer router may help you keep current and make the most out of the speed available to you.

 

Electrical Interference

Electrical interference can seriously affect a broadband connection, either with the router or with the telephone line it connects through.  Usually where you have an electrical transformer you can get inference. So try to keep your router away from power supplies or large electrical appliances. Placing your router directly on top of a desktop PC isnt ideal as the PC will have a large internal power supply to convert the mains electrical AC power, into a low voltage DC power supply for the computer to use. So try to keep sources of electrical interference away from your broadband router and telephone line.

 

Other Devices

Other devices connected to your phone line may have a fault, resulting in a poor broadband connection.  For example if you have an analogue telephone or fax machine connected to the broadband line any faults with those devices could be the cause of a slow connection.  Usually a broadband line test will give you an indication of a fault of this nature, but if you are able to do so, try disconnecting anything else which is using that particular telephone line.

 

External Issues

Once you have checked all the possible internal issues, then it may be time to call your internet provider and check for external problems.  Your broadband provider can usually run a diagnostic test to check faults, and if a problem is discovered, they will send out an engineer to fix it.

 

Fault with the copper telephone line

Your broadband line usually runs on a copper telephone line, and unfortunately copper can develop faults from time to time. Whether its simply down to the age of the copper cable, or there has been damage or water ingress, a less than perfect line will produce a slow or dropping broadband connection.  Contact your internet provider to check if there is a fault on your telephone line.

 

Service provider faults

Similarly, there may be a fault not on your telephone line, but elsewhere in your supplier’s network.  A service provider fault will probably be well known to the internet supplier, as they have systems in place to alert them to such things. Again if you contact your internet provider they will usually be able to tell you if they have a service fault.

 

Distance from the street cabinet

Unfortunately this is one of those problems that is physically impossible to change – the distance of your home or office to the nearest green street cabinet.  As your broadband is supplied over a copper cable, the length of the cable determines the quality of the signal, the longer the cable the greater the electrical resistance, and therefore the slower the speed of the broadband.  So if you are located far away from the green street cabinet, its unlikely that you will ever get a fast internet connection.  To check this, you can use the BT broadband availability checker, which will tell you the expected speed you should be achieving.  The checker can be found by going to https://www.broadbandchecker.btwholesale.com/#/ADSL  you can check your actual speed by going to https://speedtest.btwholesale.com  and if the two are vastly different you should report it to your service provider.

 

Highly contended broadband connection

This particular problem is down to how your broadband provider manages their network.  Your broadband provider’s network is similar to a motorway in many respects – they have a certain amount of bandwidth (motorway lanes) which they divide up for their users (cars) to use. The bigger the bandwidth (more motorway lanes) the more users (cars) can use it.  The problem occurs when they are trying to cram too many users (cars) into a limited space.  So just like a motorway at rush hour, if there are too many users on the network than the network can handle, everything grinds to a halt.

Why should they do this in the first place?  Well its to cut costs of course, the more users they can cram onto their network, then they don’t have to charge the users as much to use it.  So you will find that the cheaper broadband providers have the most contended network, and therefore more prone to users grinding to a slow pace.  The only way to solve this is to move to a better (and probably more expensive) broadband provider. As a rule of thumb, if you are paying less than £25 per month for your broadband connection, then you are likely to be on a highly contended network.

 

Faster speeds not available in your area

Finally, it may just be a case of your area doesn’t have fast broadband available to you. Most premises in the UK are served by FTTC (fibre to the cabinet) broadband, but there are some locations which still only have ADSL broadband which is much slower.  Often rural areas or heavily industrialised areas have ADSL broadband only and so they can never achieve speeds above 20Mbs. To check what speeds are available to you in your area, then use the BT availability checker at https://www.broadbandchecker.btwholesale.com/#/ADSL and enter your phone number.

 

Need help?

 

Here at nxcoms we are always on hand to help, so if you are having issues with a slow internet connection, please give us a call on 0161 711 1100 and we’ll do our best to assist!

 

 

 

Dongles Are Dead! It’s Time to Roam Free With eSIMs

Dongles Are Dead! It’s Time to Roam Free With eSIMs

It’s annoying, isn’t it? Having to pace around the office until you find that one sweet spot where your network can actually get signal. As you’re tied to a specific mobile provider, you can’t always get the best signal for the area that you’re in. Instead, you have to get the best signal that your supplier provides, and sometimes that might be weaker than other mobile networks.

But now, just like roaming abroad, you can move dynamically between providers in the UK using our secure eSIM! No hassle, no hardware, just seamless swapping. We’re finally giving meaning to ‘dead as a dongle’.

Still no idea what we’re on about? Let us break it down.

 

So… what is an eSIM?

 In short, it’s what it says on the tin. An electronic SIM card that can be programmed to accept any mobile phone provider.

They come in two formats – a traditional card-based SIM card which will work with any provider, or an eSIM virtual card which is rooted within a mobile device.

In fact, if you’re the proud owner of any of Apple’s latest iPhones or Google Pixel 3, you’ll notice there’s already support for an eSIM.

Okay. But why is that useful?

These clever eSIMs can automatically switch networks, according to the one which has the strongest signal. It’s unlikely that you’ll ever be in an area without a signal. If one network has a very weak signal, another network may be stronger and the eSIM will automatically switch without you needing to do anything at all.

For example, if you run 4G mobile data locations such as building site offices, CCTV sites, parking meters or traffic control systems, you no longer need to go out and change SIMs if your existing carrier goes offline. Your devices will switch automatically saving a huge amount of downtime.

Plus, if you transfer your devices to a new location, for example a new building site, you may find that a different carrier has a better signal in the new location. Using an eSIM means you don’t have to change anything in your setup – the carrier will be automatically changed to the best signal in your area.  Our eSIMs also work internationally with 450 networks over 190 countries worldwide.

In essence, you can enjoy optimal connectivity anywhere in the UK – and globally!

 

I’m on-board. What’s the next step?

 Just a short chat with a member of our team!

Poor signal shouldn’t prevent you from meeting your business aims, which is why at Nxcoms, we’ve made it as easy as possible for you to get connection wherever you are.

Whether you’re on the move or looking to streamline your internal comms we’ve got the solution for you.

 

So, what are you waiting for?

Enhance your communication today by dropping us a line on info@nxcoms.co.uk or calling 0161 711 1100.

What’s a Private APN and why should I care?

What’s a Private APN and why should I care?

Nowadays, most businesses enjoy the flexibility of remote working. And, even when your staff are on site, they’re probably using their mobiles to deal with work-related matters.

Sure, it’s boosted productivity. But it’s left a gaping hole where security is concerned. And, if you want to get serious about cybersecurity, you need to turn your attention to all devices – on and off the desk.

Enter into the picture: Private APN.

Ok, fair enough – that might not mean anything to you. But, when you realise what a Private APN can do for your business, we guarantee you’ll want to know even more about where to get one…

 

Go on, then – what’s a Private APN?

Before we dive into Private APNs, we should probably explain what APN itself stands for: Access Point Name.

In short, it’s a point of entry onto an IP network for a mobile device allowing your staff to connect to the mobile network, and wider internet beyond.

So what?

To get onto the internet, mobiles devices use the APN provided by the mobile carrier, but you are sharing this network with thousands of other mobile users. Furthermore, you cannot remotely access your device externally as the mobile provider prevents this.  In order to remotely access a device, such as a router, CCTV device, smartmeter or server, you have to request a fixed IP connection from your mobile provider; this is not only much more expensive, but leaves your device fully open to the internet without any protection from hackers whatsoever.

That’s where a Private APN comes in. This type of connection gives you your very own private network on a mobile device – securing all your data, offering easy but secure accessibility, and the ability to connect all of your devices together as if they were on your internal office network.

 

Do I need one?

If you’re dealing with any type of delicate information, or require secure remote access to your devices, then a Private APN is a game changer.

Customer data is like catnip for cyber thieves. And when you’re accessing company data from a mobile device, you’re opening the door to opportunists.

In just minutes, they can dip in and take all the digits needed to make a fortune – and when that happens, your business is liable. Your reputation is in tatters, customer trust is crushed, and the company bank account is left dry as you’re forced to pay big fines.

A Private APN, however, establishes a secure line on devices and keeps data protected 24/7.

 

Right. So, is a Private APN suitable for me?

Well, that depends.

If your team are a modest size and mobile data is working just fine for the odd task you’re using it for, then you can afford to work off standard data SIMs.

However, if you need to access mobile devices remotely, the only option up until now has been to use fixed IP data SIMs. There’s no avoiding that cyber criminals see these kind of connections as an open goal.

Private APNs replace fixed IP SIMs, prioritising security and allowing you to access your devices remotely without opening them to the wider internet.

 

Unsure of your needs?

No worries. At Nxcoms, we’re happy to walk you through the benefits of a Private APN without selling you what you don’t need. So, let us paint a clearer picture and email info@nxcoms.co.uk or call 0161 711 1100 today.

Could Your Internet Connection Be Endangering Your Business?

Could Your Internet Connection Be Endangering Your Business?

Alright, brass tacks: business internet is boring. We know it. You know it. Let’s not pretend it’s any more invigorating than watching paint dry.

But here’s another fact: failing to upgrade your network is going to seriously set your business back… if it isn’t doing so already.

If you sit there and do nothing about your internet, you’re courting disaster. Don’t wait for these problems to fall on top of you like a tonne of bricks. Read our bull-free blog to find a resolution.

 

Your current solution is probably insufficient

 

Do sluggish internet speeds ever bring your business to a crawl? You’re not alone. While 95% of the UK now has ‘superfast broadband’, the reality of what ‘fast’ looks like isn’t keeping pace.

Most ‘superfast’ connections still depend on copper telephone wires, which are limited to speeds of only 80Mbs – at best. It’s easy to see why companies settle for less-than adequate speeds. Shopping for a new provider is a pain, while upgrading to fibre-optic broadband might seem like an overhaul you can’t face or afford.

However, when you consider that fibre-optic based broadband lines can go from 100Mbs up to 1,000Mbs, it’s hardly surprising that your business is trailing behind by sitting tight with copper telephone wires.

 

The future of business internet lies in fibre

 

Fibre-optic lines offer added convenience, better call quality, and increased cost-efficiency in the long-term. The logic to switch is there, but if you’re reluctant to make the move you should know the government is going to ban copper lines altogether.

In three years’ time, new copper lines will no longer be sold, and by 2025 the aim is to phase them out for all customers.

In summary: finding a provider is impossible and your internet connection is soon to become obsolete. If you don’t act – your business is going to slow to a crawl.

The solution? Switch to fibre ASAP – the lines that carry the fastest internet speeds. The government are actually pushing to move everyone over to digital services by 2025. While that may sound like a pain, it’s actually a good thing.

You’ll need to install fibre very soon because the big guys say so – but you’ll enjoy a better connection as a result.

Keeping this in mind will make picking a provider much simpler, too. Narrow your search down to people who’re going to help you set up and get going – with added funding from the government…

 

The secret to grabbing better value gigabit

 

To encourage businesses to abandon their commitment to copper wire, the government are offering grants (temporarily) to small businesses to help them fund the switch to fibre optic.

The Gigabit Voucher Scheme doesn’t ask for anything from you in return; the government are just desperate to integrate gigabit connections across the UK as fast as they possibly can.

There’s only a bit of money left in the pot though, so you’ll need to take action quick. Or, Nxcoms can do all the work and apply for you. If you’re eligible – and you probably are – then you’ll bank a whopping £2,500 spending money for your gigabit connection.

Our guys will even throw a free router into the deal so you can get going ASAP for less.

 

Connect with Nxcoms

 

There’s no denying your SME should be looking at the higher end of the speed scale. The good news is that upgrading doesn’t need to be difficult – and it definitely doesn’t need to be out of your price range.

Grab the government grants through Nxcoms today. If you’re unclear about what the switch involves, just get in touch and we’ll explain the process without those convoluted telecoms buzzwords. We focus on fast, simple, clear communication – both in customer services and solutions.

 

Qualify for a grant of up to £2,500 towards an ultra-fast, Gigabit Internet Connection

Qualify for a grant of up to £2,500 towards an ultra-fast, Gigabit Internet Connection

The Government is committed to a full fibre Britain and they want to help your business keep up.  

 

Britain’s average internet speed ranks 31st in the world, falling behind most of Europe, Thailand and New Zealand. The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport have launched their £67m Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme in response to these findings.

This scheme allows small businesses to claim up to £2,500 towards the installation of gigabit-capable internet connections, as part of a £200 million ‘full fibre’ investment plan.

 

The benefits of claiming a voucher

 

Businesses should be thinking seriously about taking advantage of this offer and here’s why…

 

Keep up to speed

Over 95% of the UK now has coverage for superfast broadband with speeds of 24 megabits per second or higher. However, most connections still depend on copper telephone wires, which are limited in the speeds they can support.

If your business depends on fast and reliable broadband, capable of delivering gigabit speeds, a full fibre connection is required.

Taking this leap forward in connection speeds will massively benefit you and your business in the future.

 
Save thousands of pounds 

Businesses can claim up to £2,500 towards infrastructure costs of a gigabit-capable connection, proving certain criteria are met.

 

Increase productivity

Under the previous broadband voucher scheme, 50,000 businesses increased their internet connections and of these, 86% reported the internet upgrade had increased the productivity of their employees.

 

Why nxcoms? 

We care about each and every one of our customers and excel in providing a bespoke, personal service.

Our experience and expertise in telecoms means we understand how critical the internet is to your business. Our service level agreement guarantees 99.99% availability with a 4-hour fix rate should the unexpected happen.

Not only do we provide competitive pricing – offering amongst the lowest in the UK – but we also provide the nxcoms service promise, meaning we offer the ultimate internet connectivity, backed-up by our unrivaled expertise and a personal, hands-on approach.

 

If you want to ensure your business stays competitive with the quickest, most consistent and cost-effective internet connection, then give us a call on 0161 711 1100, email info@nxcoms.co.uk or text GIGABIT to 84433 to arrange a call back.

 

claim for a grant of up to £2500 towards and ultrafast broaband connection

 

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