Careful planning keeps costs under control

Guaranteeing operational quality while reducing expenditure is the ongoing objective of all telecommunications network operators. Edgar Aker of Draka Communications, now part of the Prysmian Group, explains how a combination of design software and innovative products can significantly reduce total cost of ownership.

Using overhead distribution lines to carry fibre optic cables

By Jim Rowe, AFL

Every village and small community in the UK is connected to the electricity distribution network, and in most cases this connection is carried on wooden poles stretching out across fields to the nearest electricity substation. Usually these poles carry two or three electricity conductors and would potentially make an unobtrusive and convenient way to install fibre-optic cables to carry broadband connectivity – providing power and Internet over the same poles.

Satellite Broadband

By Mike Locke

Evolution of satellite systems

Networks and businesses have been using satellites for data for as long as there has been an internet. In fact, the first ever internet connection into the UK was carried over the Atlantic by satellite – albeit at only 9kbps.

Wireless Broadband

Coming soon...

Network Capacity Planning

Internet service providers (ISPs) have historically talked about "contention ratios" when describing broadband. The contention ratio is the number of people sharing a given connection. Early ADSL services offered two levels. 20:1 for business and a cheaper 50:1 for consumers. Sharing a connection with only 20 people is clearly better than the higher number. Note that in this case the contention is at the telephone exchange – not on an individual’s line.

Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)

DSL is a family of technologies that provides data transmission over the wires of a local telephone network.

Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL)

ADSL is the technology used to provide the first-generation of broadband connections over existing copper telephone lines, and has been deployed on a mass scale around the world.

FTTx Technology Overview

Coming soon...

A Man, A Plan

Perhaps the question to remind ourselves of first is “Why create a broadband project in the first place?” The answer is that the market has struggled to deliver an adequate, universally available first-generation broadband service and will struggle even more with superfast broadband. Around 10% of homes and businesses cannot get a basic 2 Mbps service and, in terms of next-generation broadband coverage, our current best estimate is that around two-thirds of the population will be covered through commercial investment. That leaves a lot of people in the broadband slow lane.

Technology Primer

This page will help you distinguish your bits from your bytes.

For more technology definitions, see our Jargon Buster.

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