Monday, June 22, 2009

Cost Of T1 Bandwidth vs DSL .... Why The Difference?

There are a few very basic facts about T1 bandwidth and DSL that you must consider to understand why there is a price difference between the two for your business.

First, a T1 connection usually has a very stringent SLA (Service Level Agreement), one that cable and DSL does not. This means that your business has a guarantee of a specific "uptime" performance with T1 bandwidth. With DSL .... you won't get that guarantee. If something goes wrong with DSL you just have to put up with it and wait. Maybe for days. With a T1 line if something goes wrong it gets priority action with fast resolution .... usually within 4 hours.

Now ask yourself this .... which of the above is the best situation for your business? Can you afford to have all of your voice and/or data communications go down for an undetermined time? Or do you need a resolution fast so you don't lose business? Your answers will help explain part of the impact on cost differences for those situations .... the question than becomes which one can22you live with. With either you "get what you pay for".

Also, DSL and cable are shared services. Bandwidth is shared in the neighborhoods, and is often oversold. Thus many customers are paying for a limited resource, and the low retail price is the result. Even the facility into your location is shared: cable shares the TV connection, and DSL rides on an analog voice grade line. This means speed and performance will likely be affected.

On the other hand T1 is a dedicated service. It's yours and no one elses. Speed and performance are consistent. The T1 circuit is engineered as a digital circuit. Special repeaters might be required if you're far from the central office, and you don't share your bandwidth with other subscribers. Regardless you will have a reliable backbone for your network.

Relative to pricing trends, there really are two markets for T1 services: inside or outside of certain carriers' footprints. If you're within those service areas, then you can get obscenely inexpensive internet T1s, sometimes less than $300/month. If you're outside their service areas, then you'll be paying around $4-500/month. Particularly in rural areas.

So the bottom line is don't simply shop on price alone. Determine what type of network performance you must have and pay accordingly. Paying less for something that doesn't work the way you need it to will cost you MUCH more in the long run. But if you can live with that ... go for it. However, it is much more cost effective to pay a reasonable negotiated price for something that does everything you need. It also makes better business sense.

If you need help in finding the best T1 bandwidth based solution for your business voice/data network .... I strongly recommend the free support available here:

T1 Bandwidth


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Blogger Ian said...

All of the above is an extend. What an SLA on a T1 really does is give carriers a financial incentive to keep the circuit online...downtime will ocst them money.

Then again, if they build downtime into their profit models you may end up with service that costs more than DSL AND is just as unreliable.

One thing T1s can do that DSL generally can't: travel over long distances. I'm at the edge of service for DSL at my location, but a friend another mile or so up the road has a T1. Granted, he's paying $400 for the service and I'm paying $30, but he can't get the service I'm getting, and the upload speed on his connection ia about four times mine.

10:36 PM  

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