There is no doubt that fibre is regarded as the preferred broadband solution for most businesses. But as with any technology it's not perfect. Even fibre is subject to cuts, building fires and floods, earthquakes, and most importantly the failure of the electronic equipment that drives it. And there are alternatives, fixed wireless broadband being the main one.
Key Problems With Fibre Deployment
In a lot of cases, the cost to deploy fibre is often very expensive. The dominant portions of the costs are not the fibre cable itself, or the electronics, but rather the cost of physically laying the fibre as well as obtaining approvals for the works, particularly if space in Telstra's ducts is not available.
Installation Lead Times
In addition to the upfront costs, there is the long lead time to install fibre networks. A fibre deployment can take anywhere from 6 weeks to 6 months to 'light up' once it has been ordered, which can mean costly delays.
Benefits of Fixed Wireless Broadband Compared to Fibre
Availability levels similar to fibre can be achieved (exceeding 99.99%) and redundant links can be used from either the same site, or an alternative site.
Fixed Wireless Broadband is Non-Terrestrial
The wireless network has been designed to completely bypass terrestrial networks for both last mile access and back haul links, which means the network is completely insulated from breaks in fibre-optic and copper networks which are often caused by civil works and other unexpected activities.
Rapid Deployment and Ease of Relocation
Wireless connections can be installed a lot quicker than fibre, irrespective of the distances involved. Temporary locations or businesses that relocate frequently can take advantage of wireless broadband and relocations are normally simple and inexpensive. In contrast, once fibre has been laid it is a sunk cost that cannot be relocated.
Generally, the wireless equipment used is capable of scaling to much higher capacities, so that upgrading is merely a configuration change. As a result, the upgrade costs for wireless broadband services are typically much lower than legacy networks. Therefore, a business can start with just the required capacity and add to it as its requirements grow.
Fixed wireless broadband and its superior bandwidth availability, as well as low cost installation charges, make it an excellent alternative to fibre for businesses requiring high speed internet.