Yes, it’s really happening: 4G/LTE wireless can be used as the primary internet connection for businesses.
It’s wild, right? Only a few years ago this was just a pipe dream, but nowadays businesses everywhere are happily using it.
The biggest game‑changer has been the billions—literally billions—of dollars that major carriers have invested in their networks. In addition to upgrading the radios on existing towers, carriers are constantly adding network coverage where they didn’t offer it previously.
For example, in 2013 alone, Verizon Wireless invested $9.4 billion into their wireless infrastructure. AT&T has spent roughly $8 billion on their wireless infrastructure each year since 2013. Wireless signals now crisscross over 95% of the inhabited continental United States. Major carriers have doubled down on wireless because they believe it’s the future of communications.
The technology has vastly improved, too.
These devices are much more sophisticated than in the past, with the ability to serve as a primary wireless internet router, VPN device, and firewall—not to mention they can fail from a landline to a 4G/LTE device in seconds. Some of these devices will even fail from one wireless provider to another.
(Related reading: Minimizing Network Downtime with 4G/LTE)
As an example of how far this technology has advanced, we recently deployed a Cradlepoint business class wireless router with a Verizon Wireless SIM card. Using external antennas and a Wilson booster, we had this router professionally installed for our client in just three days.
We’ll say that again: This client was taking orders, doing business as usual, in just three days.
That’s a game changer for a lot of companies, and it’s what wireless can offer to a business that needs to be up and running fast.
The bandwidth provided by 4G/LTE is decent, too. We’ve supported 30+ user offices with ease. Bandwidth tends to range anywhere from 5Mb down to 15Mb down, and uploads from 2Mb to 15Mb. Signal impacts speeds significantly, so we highly encourage a professional install. You’ll be glad you did as it’s be money well spent.
Of course, it’s still not all sunshine and roses quite yet. 4G/LTE as a primary solution can be costly to businesses since some carriers are still being greedy and requiring metered plans only. This too will pass, though, especially as competition catches up.
As 4G/LTE technology continues to progress, the next evolution looms on the horizon and makes this story even more compelling
5G has already been deployed in major metropolitan areas. Most notably, 5G promises lower latency and significantly higher throughput (1Gb+ to the device), which is exactly what businesses need to reach a greater audience.
What this means is it’s going to be even more probable that some businesses, especially those in major metro areas, will have the real possibility of cutting the proverbial terrestrial broadband cord.
In most cases, we’re able to deploy these 4G failover solutions as a primary network in the short term, then transition them to a backup when a landline solution becomes available. This provides a robust backup plan that can typically support the business even during peak times.
Installing these solutions now will also serve your business well in the future.
Experts now agree: There will come a time when the wireless solution will become the primary solution that’s backed up by wireline, and the companies that already have their 4G infrastructure in place will be head and shoulders above others who will be struggling to meet the modern demands on their business’s cloud‑based applications with their red, primary wireline solution from the Dark Ages.
As with any business, there are costs to keep infrastructure updated and functional. But if your business relies mainly on cloud‑based applications to conduct business every day, then having a fast, reliable, always‑on solution isn’t a luxury — it’s an absolute necessity.
The day has finally come when 4G is available as a primary internet connection for businesses. Are you ready to move into the modern age with your wireless solution? If so, contact us for a free consultation.