In any business internet bandwidth is a resource that needs to be managed if it is to be a profitable investment. Many companies use their ADSL internet bandwidth for voice and video over IP (VoIP) in order to reduce traditional telephony charges. By using ADSL internet to carry long-distance calls a company can enjoy significant cost savings in their communications budget. Of course broadband internet is also able to supply rich media applications that deliver video, voice, text, and data all in one session.
Since VoIP uses the very same broadband internet connection as the rest of the companies internet applications (such as web browsers and email) there needs to be some way to balance the load so that limited internet resources are shared equitably and with the least possible degradation of service levels for all users. This can be quite a difficult task and may require specialist consultation.
One might differentiate applications based on the pattern of their internet usage. Certain applications, such as email and web browsers, have unpredictable bursts of internet requirements. They may lie dormant for some time and then suddenly demand bandwidth from the ADSL connection. These sorts of applications are generally not very sensitive to delays on their internet connection - your web browser can wait a few seconds to render a website. Other applications, such as VoIP and streaming video, require a constant level of bandwidth and are very sensitive to networking delays (network latency). If your broadband internet is slow then you will definitely notice marked degradation in your call quality.
Luckily there are solutions to load balancing your internet connection. A policy based on quality of service (QoS) can help to share out your internet resource and manage the bandwidth contention between users and their various applications. A company could, for example, allow certain mission critical applications to receive the lions share of bandwidth and restrict bandwidth to non-essential applications (such as web browsing or P2P file sharing).
eNetworks is experienced in providing load balanced networking solutions. We can provide hardware and software advice that will help your business maximize the benefit of your precious internet resources. By carefully allocating network resources based on your business priorities using sophisticated monitoring and analysis you will be able to shape your traffic and guarantee bandwidth to your timing-critical, real-time applications like VoIP and videoconferencing. Variables such as fairness, priorities, minimum / maximum bandwidth, number of sessions allowed, and guaranteed rates can all be adjusted so that your ADSL broadband internet provides maximum benefit to your company.
Your broadband internet connection is a resource. Like any company resource it should be controlled and monitored so that your business can leverage maximum benefit from it. It is simply intelligent business practice.