Scott Sampson, CEO of Fiber Fast Homes was featured in Pipeline Magazine which can be seen here.
Statistics show that demand for cable Internet service is dropping while innovative technologies such as fiber to the home are becoming more popular. Market research firm Future Market Insights estimates that the fiber to the home market will grow nearly 15 percent by 2029, and Statista shows that smart home revenues have been on the rise as sales in the United States are projected to reach almost $47 billion by 2025—approximately twice the amount of revenue of 2020.
Why is Such Growth Happening? And Why Should People Care?
We are witnessing the rise of younger home buyers who are accustomed to using applications that require greater bandwidth. As younger people move into the real estate market, an important selling point is Internet bandwidth and speed to support applications requiring greater bandwidth, such as home automation, streaming, gaming, and more. New homeowners are demanding high-speed Internet with faster download and upload speeds to support their home and lifestyle.
What Exactly is Fiber Internet and Why Is It Different from Cable?
When people think of home Internet services, they immediately turn to cable companies or the traditional telephone companies. Many of these suppliers tout “lightning fast” speeds and use that as a competitive selling advantage. This leads to users thinking these providers are their only option for reliable, high-speed Internet. With fiber Internet, however, all that is changing.
Fiber is the fastest option for delivering high-speed Internet. It is a broadband Internet connection that uses fiber optical cables made of flexible strands (or fibers) of optically pure glass as thin as a human hair to transmit light signals, which are more efficient than traditional communication networks. This modern technology allows for Internet speeds of up to 5 Gbps or more, improving download speeds by as much as 10 times over other options—and, remarkably, can send data at 70 percent of the speed of light.
Fiber Internet is faster and more reliable than traditional cable and telephone technology, such as coaxial cable, copper DSL, and satellite Internet. Coaxial or copper-based networks just cannot compete with fiber’s capabilities. Satellite Internet, while great for harder-to reach places, still does not offer the performance that fiber can.
A fiber-optic connection with the appropriate Internet plan offers homes several other benefits. For instance, symmetrical service and zero buffering allows for uninterrupted content consumption. One can stream TV services, movies, music, and gaming on multiple devices simultaneously with low latency and high speeds, greater reliability, and with reduced susceptibility to inclement weather.
Fiber Internet is certainly the best high-speed Internet available, but if one decides to cut the cable cord to take advantage of their fiber service, there have always been questions asked about still getting the entertainment they enjoy. All that is changing now with streaming. With fiber Internet, once service is activated a consumer can sign-up online for all the traditional streaming services such as Disney+, Hulu, YouTube TV, and others to get content and even traditional broadcast services. The same is true for gaming and other content options available via high-speed Internet streaming. And, this is only getting better as more traditional content moves to streaming.
The biggest downside to fiber Internet is availability. Because it is a more recent technology, fiber Internet is not available to everyone everywhere, and it may take time to roll it out to all areas. But as a faster and more reliable option, fiber provides better service, and once available, comes with few to no downsides.
What About the Changing Business Landscape and Fiber Internet?
With the increased popularity of working remotely, organizations are being challenged to create and maintain a positive work culture in a virtual environment. While elements of creating a strong and collaborative work culture have not changed, technology has taken on a more vital role during the surge in remote work, and fiber Internet is at the top of the list.
A core necessity needed to support remote workers is high-speed Internet connectivity. Remote workers count on their Internet service provider to deliver the connectivity needed to keep up with and manage the applications required as part of a successful workday in a remote environment, leading us to understand why some of the features of fiber Internet make it the only viable solution for business today when it comes to a remote workforce.
Symmetrical Nature of Fiber Is a Key Advantage for Home & Business
One of the most important aspects of fiber Internet that sets it apart from other forms of connectivity is symmetrical download and upload speeds. Ever since the Internet became a ubiquitous presence in our lives, the question of download and upload speeds has somewhat perplexed the everyday person. Shouldn’t there just be one speed? Unfortunately, it is not that simple. There are two types of connections that determine the speed and reliability of Internet service—symmetrical and asymmetrical. Each type has its own pros and cons but given the need for greater bandwidth driven by all the new applications in the home, along with the greater emphasis on working from home, symmetrical is key. That’s where fiber Internet excels.
Symmetrical connections are exactly what they sound like—a connection with equal download and upload speeds. For example, a 500/500 Mbps symmetrical connection provides 500 Mbps of download and 500 Mbps of upload speeds. On the other hand, an asymmetrical connection (which is common with cable), typically offers significantly slower upload speeds which can make it difficult to transfer larger files and work from home.
The symmetrical nature of fiber makes it the connectivity of choice for today’s homeowner, for a number of reasons:
- Faster (and larger) file uploads. Uploading files to the cloud sometimes seems to take forever, especially large video or graphical files. With symmetrical speeds, uploads of files are as fast as downloads, which reduces the time and completes tasks faster.
- Elimination of Internet roadblocks. Slow uploads and dropped video calls often occur when data gets congested due to insufficient available bandwidth during peak traffic periods. Fiber-to the-home connections prevent these issues because you use your own fiber line thereby maintaining productivity and minimizing disruptions.
- Enhanced access to cloud services. Cloud computing has gained immense popularity, not only among businesses but also among consumers, due to the flexibility, secure storage, and team collaboration it offers. Reliable access to the cloud relies on fast upload speeds, however. Symmetrical connections guarantee that one’s cloud services are always available and operating optimally.
Today’s homes are increasingly filled with a range of smart devices, each of which use up bandwidth to connect to the Internet. From smartphones, gaming systems, smart televisions to computers, tablets and even video doorbells, these devices need ample bandwidth to work well. Fiber Internet offers homes faster uploads and downloads without any significant limits on the number of devices running at the same time.
With more people working remotely and working from home, expectations are that the same performance one gets at work should be available at home. Without enough bandwidth, the simultaneous connections can cause speeds to screech to a halt, and even cause the dreaded buffering that leads to painfully slow performance. Fiber Internet is the best solution to provide the “enterprise-level” performance and reliability needed to support this paradigm shift in work.
Fiber Internet, Like the Telephone, The Next 100-Year Technology
Just as the telephone did in the first 100 years of communications, fiber Internet is expected to change the way we communicate in our everyday lives for the next 100 years. The sky is the limit with regard to fiber-to-the-home Internet because of the capabilities and flexibility of the technology. Many providers are looking at offering even faster speeds in the future, including 5 Gbps and perhaps even as high as 10 Gbps.
With those kinds of speeds, applications and content providers have greater options for more exciting products. Also, as the world of work becomes more hybrid, fiber can offer speeds at home that can perform at levels only seen before in the commercial space. Also, the infrastructure of fiber Internet can easily be upgraded and maintained to introduce even better and higher performing technology as it advances in the future, with little disruption to the infrastructure itself. This will allow providers to better meet the changing needs of the market quickly and reliably as advances are made.
Fiber Internet is the obvious choice when it comes to true high-speed Internet service and is on pace to cement its position as the technology of the future—the next 100-year technology. And, as providers explore more ways to improve the technology to better meet the needs of consumers and businesses, the vision for the future of the communications industry is limitless and promises to meet and exceed users’ expectations now and over the next century.