‘Metro ethernet’ is one of the hottest terms in the technology world today, but what is metro ethernet? Quite simply, metro ethernet is its own unique system, connecting local area network (LAN) users to a wide area network (WAN), which provides many of the benefits of a leased line, such a reliability for example, without the cost of a full leased line. This makes metro ethernet a particularly attractive option for smaller businesses working to a strict budget. Metro ethernet sounds like a great option, right?
It is. Unfortunately, while metro ethernet service have really taken off in the United States thanks to Comcast, and even within the Asia-Pacific region thanks to Verizon, it’s still something that the UK hasn’t fully embraced. So what are the best metro ethernet alternatives that are available here in the UK?
Point to Point Ethernet
The most obvious solution is, of course, point-to-point ethernet, which is remarkably similar to metro ethernet (in fact, there are one or two UK providers who actually use the term ‘metro ethernet’). Ultimately, what a point-to-point service does is connect LANs and WANs into a single network, which enhances the speed, security, and reliability of data transfer between multiple, connected sites.
As well as being similar to metro ethernet, point-to-point is also similar to leased lines, especially when it comes to the benefits that businesses can enjoy when using this service to connect their offices, such as:
- ● Symmetrical upload and download speeds
- ● Fast voice, video, and data transfer between multiple sites
- ● Always on’ connection
- ● Choice of speeds to suit a variety of business needs
- ● Service level agreements (SLA) on managed networks
The good news is that there’s a lot less work that needs to be undertaken to install a point-to-point connection than a leased line, which means businesses can connect faster and with limited upheaval. Sites that are within 25km on each other are the quickest and easiest to connect using a dedicated fibre pathway, while those over greater distances will be prioritised on existing fibre optic networks.
Who Needs a Point-to-Point Connection?
If the cost of a leased line has been deterring you from upgrading your connection, then a point-to-point ethernet service can be an excellent choice. Point-to-point ethernet is currently the most effective and efficient alternative to a metro ethernet service in the UK, and offers similar benefits to a leased line for a lower cost. Smaller businesses, and those with lesser connectivity needs, are likely to benefit the most from a managed point-to-point, whereas larger businesses may still wish to consider a full leased line.