When it comes to providing fast and reliable internet connectivity there are a few ways to get that connection into your building, EOFFTC and Leased Lines being two of those options. Here we will compare EOFTTC (Ethernet over Fibre to the Cabinet) and Leased Line solutions for businesses seeking high-speed, reliable internet connectivity. With the increasing demand for cloud services, VoIP telephony, and video conferencing, choosing the right Ethernet connection is vital for the success of your small business. In this guide, we’ll delve into the differences between EOFTTC and fibre leased lines, examining factors such as install time, service level agreements, fibre optic cables versus copper wiring, and symmetrical bandwidth. We’ll also discuss the impact of these connections on upload and download speeds, large file transfers, peak times, and cost-effectiveness. By the end of this article, you’ll have a clear understanding of EOFTTC services and fibre broadband options, empowering you to make an informed decision for your business’s ethernet needs.
What is EoFTTC?
Ethernet over Fibre to the Cabinet (EoFTTC) is a high-speed internet connectivity solution that combines the advantages of both fibre-optic and copper technologies. It is designed to offer businesses improved performance and reliability compared to traditional broadband services, while also being more cost-effective than a dedicated leased line.
In an EoFTTC connection, fibre-optic cables are used to transmit data from the Internet Service Provider’s (ISP) core network to a nearby street cabinet. From the cabinet, the connection is extended to the business premises using copper wiring and VDSL (Very-high-bit-rate Digital Subscriber Line) technology. This hybrid approach delivers faster speeds and better performance than a standard broadband connection, while still maintaining a more affordable price point compared to a fully fibre-optic leased line.
What is a Lease Line?
A leased line is a dedicated, high-speed internet connectivity solution designed for businesses and organisations that require reliable and symmetrical upload and download speeds. Unlike traditional broadband services that share bandwidth among multiple users, a leased line provides a private, fixed-bandwidth connection exclusively for the customer.
Leased lines offer several advantages, such as guaranteed performance, low latency, and consistent speeds, which are critical for businesses that rely on real-time applications, video conferencing, and large data transfers. Most leased lines use fibre-optic cables, which enable them to deliver faster speeds and better reliability compared to copper-based connections.
While leased lines typically come at a higher cost compared to shared broadband services, they are well-suited for businesses with high bandwidth demands, multiple locations, or a need for dedicated and consistent connectivity.
Comparing the two options
EoFTTC relies on copper wiring and VDSL technology for part of its signal transmission. The connection extends from your site to the nearest cabinet, where the electrical signal is then converted into optical signals. These optical signals travel through fibre-optic cables until they reach your ISP’s core network. In contrast, most leased lines use fibre-optic cabling throughout the entire connection, extending from your site directly to the ISP’s core network.
However, a small percentage of low-bandwidth leased lines also utilize copper wiring instead of fibre-optic cabling. These connections transmit signals over 2, 4, 6, or 8 pairs of copper wire, delivering speeds of up to 35Mbps.
Leased Lines offer dedicated bandwidth, while EoFTTC typically provides a combination of dedicated and non-dedicated bandwidth. For example, with a 100Mbps leased line, you always get a 100Mbps connection downstream and upstream. However, with an EoFTTC circuit, you might get a guaranteed 20Mbps upstream and downstream, plus up to 60Mbps downstream on a ‘best efforts’ basis.
EoFTTC is usually quicker to install than a standard leased line, as it leverages pre-existing telecoms infrastructure, such as nearby cabinets with fibre-optic cabling and spare backhaul capacity. This means less on-site work is required to establish a connection.
However, EoFTTC connections are more susceptible to signal degradation compared to fibre-based leased lines. Factors like electromagnetic interference from nearby electrical circuits and radio signals can impact EoFTTC connections, which rely on VDSL technology. Fibre leased lines are not affected by such interference.
Leased line connection speeds are more predictable, while EoFTTC connection speeds may vary. Also, the target ‘fix’ time for EoFTTC circuits is often longer than that of fibre leased lines, meaning you may experience longer downtimes in case of a connection issue.
EoFTTC is an excellent choice for businesses needing more bandwidth within a short timeframe, but those with more time to plan may benefit more from fibre-based leased lines. Keep in mind that bandwidth demands are likely to grow, and EoFTTC has limited capacity for expansion.
As the future of broadband evolves, FTTC is expected to be replaced by FTTP, rendering EoFTTC and EFM over copper less relevant. To determine whether a fibre leased line is available at your site, use a pricing request tool or contact us. Leased lines are more widely available than many people realise.
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