Connectivity: understand why it is the power that is driving the digital age7 minutes reading
Living without the Internet to establish social relationships or do business has become unthinkable. Thus, connectivity plays a fundamental role in communications, enabling connections and shortening distances.
In recent years, we have had to adapt to a new digital standard. We demand anywhere, anytime access to mission-critical systems and processes. And so, corporate networks are increasingly required.
In this scenario, companies process tons of information daily, producing and using data that, in turn, require increasingly robust Data Centers to run their operations. Consequently, business leaders are pressured to align cutting-edge technology, policy, and resilient procedures to drive business agility and revenue.
These changes are driving us to critical investment decisions to support business evolution. And ensuring a fast and stable connectivity solution, whatever the circumstances, is a crucial part of that process.
Moreover, nothing is better than understanding the technology before defining the most appropriate standard for your structure.
Want to know how? Read next.
What is connectivity?
As a matter of fact, connectivity is the quality, state or ability to establish a connection, to be connective or connected to a particular surface.
In the computing field, it usually refers to the availability of one device to interconnect with another (or a network). Thus, the connectivity of a computer is given by its ability to connect to other equipment and peripherals, to a computer system or a network, such as the Internet.
In this way, we arrive at the point that will deal with in this article: connectivity, specifically concerning Internet access. Now, you might be wondering: ‘What is the difference between connection and connectivity’?
There is a subtle difference between both concepts. Generally speaking, the connection can be understood as a link between two (or more) things – or even people – such as electronic devices. On the other hand, connectivity has a broader meaning: it deals with the ability to connect to (or communicate with) something else rather than the connection itself.
Just as the conceptualization of connectivity is quite broad, the types of connection of a device (such as a smartphone, a computer, a game console or a server) to the Internet are also diverse. Below we will describe some of the most well-known ones:
Old dial-up connections required users to link their phone line to a computer to access the Internet. Thus, this particular type of analogue connection did not allow users to make or receive phone calls through the home telephone service while using the Internet. Now considered outdated, the ‘dial-up’ connection was among the most common Internet connection types a few years ago.
The service covers mobile devices such as cell phones, smartphones, tablets, notebooks and even drones. And due to its mobility characteristic, its main proposal is to enable access to the Internet from anywhere without the need to connect to a hub or fixed connection point physically.
Wi-Fi hotspots are devices that provide Internet access over a wireless local area network (W-LAN) from a router that, in turn, connects to an Internet service provider. This way, they allow electronic equipment to connect to the Internet or exchange data through radio waves. Hotspots can be phone-based or standalone applications.
The term broadband is a reduction in bandwidth which, in turn, refers to the amount of data that can be transmitted over the internet network in a certain fixed period. One of the fastest options available, it uses multiple data channels to send large amounts of information. For example, broadband Internet connections such as DSL and cable are considered high bandwidth connections.
The Digital Subscriber Line uses a two-wire copper telephone line connected to the company so that the service is delivered along with the fixed phone service. Even so, it is possible to make calls while surfing the Internet. While many DSL connections can be considered broadband, it’s worth remembering that not all broadband connections are DSL.
A cable Internet connection is one of the most widely used types of broadband access today. Through a modem, users can access the Internet through cable TV lines. In turn, cable modems can provide high-speed Internet access.
Fiber optic internet is a broadband connection that can reach speeds of up to 940 Megabits per second (Mbps) with low latency. That’s because the technology uses fiber optic cable, which can send data as fast as about 70% of the speed of light.
A satellite Internet option may be available in certain areas where a broadband connection has yet to be offered. Similar to wireless access, satellite connection uses a modem.
The Integrated Services Digital Network allows users to send data, voice and video content over digital telephone lines or standard telephone wires. Thus, the user and the ISP require an ISDN adapter at both ends of the transmission.
The role of connectivity in Data Centers
In practice, Data Centers perform as the heart of network infrastructure. This is because, through it, large amounts of data travel, are collected, stored, processed and distributed.
In this way, it is one of the main responsible for operating the entire IT architecture. Thus, covers functions such as website hosting, e-mails and collaboration services, support for cloud storage applications, e-commerce transactions and online gaming communities, as well as backup and redundancy.
For this, Data Centers connect communication networks so people and platforms can access information remotely, including connecting the organization to the outside world. In this way, we can see that internet connectivity is one of its essential features.
According to the IDC consultancy, by the end of 2023, 60% of companies will implement hybrid and intelligent connectivity that brings together physical markets to digital storefronts and supply chains to facilitate seamless business transactions.
The truth is that, without connectivity, a Data Center would be a building of computers that could only ‘talk’ to each other.
And in this game, speed and latency are decisive criteria for victory. The faster information can be provided, the more valuable the Data Center can be to users outside its four walls.
Latency: an essential factor for connectivity
The term latency often comes up when talking about connectivity. But what is it anyway? What causes it? And why is it important?
In practice, latency is a measure of delay, usually measured in milliseconds (ms). On a network, it represents the time it takes for data to reach its destination and return.
This round-trip delay is a relevant measurement because a computer using a TCP/IP network (the most widely used network protocol) sends a limited amount of data to its destination. It then waits for a return confirmation before sending more. Thus, round-trip delay has a fundamental impact on network performance.
But why is it important to count time in both directions? Well, TCP sends confirmation bits back to the sender. In turn, a longer delay is naturally associated with a slower connection. However, due to the nature of TCP/IP, latency has a more complex and far-reaching impact on performance: it drives throughput.
5G: low latency
When we talk about the evolution of connectivity, the topic of the moment automatically comes up: 5G. As a rule, the fifth generation of mobile Internet is intended to provide higher data speeds, as well as more reliability, massive network capacity, greater availability and a smoother experience delivered to more users.
Despite the common perception that the most critical benefit brought by new technology is higher data speeds, 5G can be exploited to address a much more critical network connectivity challenge: reducing network latency.
It is the low latency (potentially below five milliseconds) that could enable new applications of technologies such as the Internet of things, big data and artificial intelligence, as well as entirely new ways of accomplishing tasks that we could never have dreamed of during the of 4G and LTE telecommunications.
“Admittedly, there is no real end state for connectivity. It’s an evolutionary path that improves agility, increases business flexibility, and enables organizations to adapt to change as market or business conditions change.”IDC Futurescape 2022 Predictions
Ultra-connectivity in ODATA Data Centers
Established in 2015, ODATA is now one of the largest providers specialized in Data Center services in Latin America. As a company dedicated to providing flexible IT infrastructure across the region, its facilities are all carrier neutral by design. Thus, they enable the interconnection between several telecommunications operators and Internet providers without any interruption in delivering service to the customer.
Afterwards, this is a feature of great importance to businesses, as it ensures the availability and stability of the customer’s network and total freedom to choose the best connection according to the organization’s specific needs.
As its buildings are located close to the country’s leading telecommunications networks, ODATA Data Centers offer excellent connections with operators. This is because the entire infrastructure was developed to guarantee the traffic of a large volume of data and broad connectivity, with different carriers and access to international routes.
The company has its own SDN (Software Defined Network) structure and, through logical connections, delivers speed, redundancy and financial competitiveness. In addition, the high-capacity, low-latency local area network (LAN) allows setting up an environment geared towards cloud computing or mission-critical systems.
It uses redundant underground fiber optic inputs, an ample supply of on and off fiber, and two telecommunications rooms (MMR).
Want to learn more about how a high-performance connectivity service can power your IT’s digital evolution? Click on the button below and book a meeting – virtual or in-person – with the ODATA specialists team:
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