Improving your connectivity services

 

If it’s time to upgrade your connectivity services, it’s easy to be put off by thoughts of complicated processes and inconvenient losses of connection during installation. That’s why we’ve put together a short guide to upgrading connectivity services – lead times are often much shorter than expected, and we can usually do most of the work for you.

To help you decide on the best digital services for your business, it’s important to understand your digital services – and when it’s worth making improvements. Whether you’re upgrading or renewing your broadband connection, or pondering cloud communication, you can read about each process in detail below.

Connectivity services

Upgrading to FTTP

FTTP offers a fully fibre optic connection from telephone exchange right to your premises. Offering ultrafast speeds and a reliable connection, FTTP is popular with both businesses and domestic users alike.

Why upgrade?

FTTP, or fibre to the premises, delivers even faster speeds than FTTC. FTTP is a full fibre connection, replacing all the copper wiring that links your premises to the main telephone exchange. Usually favoured by small and medium businesses, FTTP provides an ultrafast, reliable broadband connection.

The process

If you’re upgrading to FTTP, you’ll need an optical network terminal – or ONT. Depending on whether you need to have an ONT installed, or you already have an existing ONT on your premises from previous residents or suppliers, the installation process will vary.

  • No Existing ONT
    Access to your premises will be required to replace the existing master socket with an FTTP compatible ONT. If your business is the first in the area to adopt FTTP, resides in a listed building, or requires access to third-party land for installation, a survey must be taken first. This will be arranged by us via our supplier.
  • Existing ONT
    If you have an existing ONT, this speeds up the process. We can contact the previous supplier to arrange the changeover, or you’ll need to provide details of your ONT if there wasn’t a previous supplier.

Once your new FTTP is successfully connected, your existing ADSL or FTTC connection will usually be terminated. We will assist with the technical transfers – for example, applying previous IP addresses, usernames and passwords to your new FTTP line. 

Lead times

If you have a suitable ONT already installed on your premises, the swap should only take around seven working days. If you need a new ONT, the process will take around four weeks from start to finish. Remember though that your current connection will continue in the meantime. To ensure minimal disruption, expect to have about a month’s overlap.

Upgrading to Ethernet (Leased Line)

The fastest connection available, Ethernet lines are popular with businesses of all sizes, providing persistent connection at unbeatable speeds.

Why upgrade?

Ethernet leased lines provide the ultimate connection speeds, thanks to dedicated lines connecting your premises directly to the internet. Upload and download speeds are the same (the connection is symmetrical), making it an advantage for businesses who are heavily reliant on online services (including lots of uploads). It’s a fantastic option for those working with cloud communications and services. 

The process

There are a few different Ethernet upgrades on the market, especially for businesses. Whichever Ethernet upgrade you choose, the installation process is likely similar. 

Often, Ethernet installation does involve construction in and around your premises in order to successfully implement direct lines. This will involve providing work access, asbestos certificates and information about terminals on-site. Sometimes, additional construction charges may be incurred.

After the installation process is finished, you’ll need a new block of IPs. IP addresses from previous ADSL, FTTC and FTTP lines can’t be copied over. We’ll support you with this process. 

Lead times

When implementing Ethernet lines, lead times can widely vary depending on the construction needed within your premises. As a general guide, you should allow up to 65 working days for complete activation.

Upgrading to SoGEA

Usually an attractive option to smaller businesses, SoGEA offers superfast connection speeds and is available to both commercial and domestic premises.

Why upgrade?

Single order Generic Ethernet Access, also known as SoGEA, can provide faster speeds than ADSL, making it a great choice for small businesses. It replaces Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC), using the same technology but without the phone line component so your connection is managed in a single order.  SoGEA delivers a strong, stable connection and is a great alternative where FTTP is not yet available.

The process 

SoGEA is usually implemented as an upgrade from asymmetric digital subscriber line (ADSL) broadband or a migration from FTTC. Depending on what infrastructure is already in place in your premises, the process will either be managed remotely or an engineer will attend to install a new line which isthen  connected at the street cabinet and local exchange.  

Lead times 

It’ll take around 10-15 working days to complete the upgrade. If it’s a new order, you’ll only experience a break in service on the day of the install, which should only last around two hours. If it’s a migration from FTTC, you’ll likely experience minimal downtime. There is a very slight chance of a potential delay to your order due to capacity issues, as cabinets have a limited number of fibre compatible ports. If demand for fibre in your area is high, you may have to be added to a waiting list before SoGEA can be connected.

Switching to digital telephone services

Switching from a traditional phone line to digital services such as VoIP instantly improves the connectivity and communication capabilities within your business.

Why upgrade?

Upgrading to digital telephone services from traditional copper telephone lines opens up a world of useful new features. With VoIP, your broadband and telephone connections become integrated, allowing you to access your phone lines via the internet, from anywhere in the world. Whether you choose to be app-based or stick to handsets, digital phones offer a greater deal of flexibility.

The process

When upgrading to digital services, we’ll need to submit a number port to move your number into our system. We will just need you to supply a recent telephone bill so we can initiate the port.

In terms of transition, we will take care of the move for you. Switching from a traditional phone line – such as integrated services digital network (ISDN) or public switched telephone network (PSTN) – to digital voice services like session initiation protocol (SIP), cloud communications or voice over internet protocol (VoIP) simply requires a change in equipment. We’ll configure and install your new devices and provide guidance and training where necessary on how to use your new system.

Lead times

Switching from traditional phone lines to a digital service is a relatively quick process. The number port usually takes about 2 weeks and in the meantime we can place a temporary divert on your phone to ensure a seamless transition once the port completes. Then it’s just a case of configuring the system to your requirements with ring groups, designated call flows, voicemails (and more) all included.