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Mike van Bunnens, managing director at Comms365, explains how robust connectivity creates a solid foundation for digital innovation.

2021 is the year of recovery and growth for businesses across all industries. Technology must be at the heart of this transformation by accelerating the adoption of new and innovative tools and processes to create high performing systems that work together. With rapid advances in technology and the advent of cloud-based services and applications, the way we work and collaborate has drastically changed. Technology innovation has led industries to continually strive to be more efficient, productive and cost effective.

However, there remains a fundamental hurdle for those organisations looking to capitalise on new innovation – finding the best connectivity to do the job. Technology that is crucial for industries to innovate cannot function without high speed and reliable internet connections. But gaining access to connectivity can be a challenge in environments where there is typically no existing infrastructure.

This could be a frequent lack of high speed, portable and reliable internet connectivity, or having access to emergency comms should there be a delay in a fixed-line installation or accidental breakage to a line. It is therefore imperative that businesses address these issues as a matter of urgency so that firms can gain access to the connectivity they need from day one, and create a solid foundation for digital innovation.

As internet communications are no longer restricted to fixed-line only delivery, companies can now invest in a hybrid communications model of wired and wireless internet access that truly satisfies business needs – irrespective of location. Advanced bonded solutions enable organisations to gain additional resilience and contingency from combining different internet access connections together into a single ‘virtual pipe’, with precise performance management.

With combined bandwidth and enhanced reliable internet performance integrated into a portable solution, this service is highly suitable for situations where internet services are required urgently. In addition, this approach builds in future-proofing by providing consistent bandwidth for improved performance and backup resilience to a primary connection for business continuity.

Additionally, while 5G is emerging, it will take several years before 5G offers ubiquitous accessibility, so companies cannot afford to postpone much needed network investments in wireless primary and backup services indefinitely. The good news is that 4G networks are now mature – and that means they are both widely available and reliable. The arrival of 5G will address the burgeoning capacity issue for 4G, and recent market price adjustments have taken 4G out of the last resort category into a viable option for primary and resilience connectivity.

4G is proven to support VoIP and unified communication streaming; it can also be used for machine-to-machine communication. Software defined networking (SDN) enables 4G to be blended with other networks to deliver primary connections that deliver a reliable and affordable leased line alternative.

Furthermore, IoT is deliverable today using the unlicensed spectrum and other standards, including NarrowBand IoT and LoRaWAN, to enable mass IoT deployments (which will be incorporated later into the emerging 5G standard, future proofing investment).

Critically, all of these services come with SLAs; networks are reliable and accessible. Essentially, it is possible today to meet business needs for affordable and consistent primary and secondary connectivity services with the existing 4G network infrastructure.

Businesses cannot continue to utilise outdated processes and management methods, but instead must embrace digital advances and adopt smarter processes and technology to stay competitive. But they must first conquer the basics of connectivity.

So how can businesses ensure that a strong and stable connection is established quickly to make sure a lack of connectivity does not negatively impact on projects?

The answer is by working with experienced and trusted providers who can supply the connectivity solutions that all sites require, including offices, distribution centres, warehouse, wind farms and construction sites.

Industries will then be able to continually benefit from the opportunities that the latest advances in innovation present – the potential rewards to organisations that capitalise on digitisation will be instantaneous.

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