One of the most interesting business services trends of the past year has been organizations of all sizes switching to our Ethernet network solutions. These customers represent a wide range of industries from banks, schools and hospitals to the Boston Ballet, Utz Quality Foods and a coal mining company as well as the Oakland A’s, Denver Broncos and other professional sports teams.
In fact, with each new Ethernet deployment the feedback from customers is consistent:trying to run a business today on a 1.5 Mbps T1 line is untenable (similar to a consumer trying to stream movies over a dial-up connection). So the big question for the industry is not whether smaller and mid-sized businesses need Ethernet – it’s whether Ethernet is available to them and how soon they can get it.
Recently I was interviewed by Network World magazine to discuss some of these same Ethernet themes for the coming year. The resulting story, "8 Ethernet Predictions for 2014" covers each prediction in detail, but here are three that I wanted to highlight:
1) 10 Megabit per second Ethernet is the "new T1" – Ethernet is quickly replacing legacy T1 lines as the technology of choice for businesses to connect their various offices in a single network and create a high-speed connection to the Internet. Because a standard T1 only offers 1.5 Mbps, getting 10 Mbps is a big jump in performance, and is quickly becoming the standard in business.
2) It’s time to take the "metro" out of Metro Ethernet – Ethernet is now available far beyond metropolitan areas, and is connecting businesses across state lines and across the country. We are truly moving into the age of "Ethernet everywhere," so the term metro will go away over time.
3) For Ethernet, it’s all about your "footprint" – Footprint refers to the geographic reach of your network and is the key to bringing Ethernet to more businesses. The Comcast footprint covers 39 states and 20 of the nation’s top 25 markets. Indeed, footprint will be the "Holy Grail" for Ethernet providers in 2014.
In fact, our comprehensive Ethernet portfolio, vast network reach, and growing base of diverse customers were key reasons Comcast Business was recently selected as the Metro Ethernet Forum’s Service Provider of the Year for North America.