Cellular internet utilises the power of 4G mobile technology, using multiple mobile networks to create a private connection to the internet where wired technologies are simply not available. It is the private nature of the connection which differentiates it from a domestic 4G data connection, so it can replicate the capabilities of a wired connection to deliver a static IP, vLANs and even enable SIP traffic to flow seamlessly alongside data.
To put it simply, if you have applications running over your wired broadband or a leased line, they can now run over cellular internet. This mobile network-powered connectivity has much to offer.
Cellular internet access, sometimes referred to as cellular ethernet, is often used as back-up connectivity to a main connection. Historically, building resilience into any internet connectivity solution or wide area network (WAN) relied on businesses investing in secondary wired failover connections, such as broadband.
The danger of this course of action is that these backup secondary connections often share the same single points of failure; ducts, cabinets, exchanges etc. are all shared by the various wired connections. A fault with the primary connection is therefore likely to affect other wired connections too.
By its very nature, cellular internet access does not rely on physical cables and will not be affected by exchange or infrastructure issues. Therefore, we deploy routers with an integrated 4G SIM card(s) as a back-up solution.
Pre-leased line connectivity
When businesses order a leased line, there can be a delay in provision while cables are being laid. To bridge the termination of one contract to another or a migration from one connectivity technology to another, cellular internet access can provide a short-term connectivity solution. When the leased lines are live, the cellular internet access solution can be used for back-up.
A quick check of an online broadband checker will reveal if you work in a not-spot, but no doubt you will already be fully aware of its challenges! Not-spots are off-grid areas where the connectivity infrastructure does not supply high enough speeds. Sometimes these challenges can be overcome by running multiple broadband lines to the same premises, but a cellular solution maybe more suitable. As long as there is decent coverage from the mobile networks, it could be faster than plugging into your local exchange.
The ideal cellular solution would be one that does not rely on any one network, as if this network goes down, businesses will lose their internet connection. If the solution automatically finds and uses the strongest signal available, then downtime will be minimal.
Quick and mobile deployment
A SIM and a router can be deployed in just days. It can also be used for a short time, so if you run a ‘pop-up’ business, cellular connectivity can be used in one location before moving to another one.
Are all cellular solutions equal?
All the above could sound like a basic 4G SIM, but a business grade cellular solution must differ. First and foremost, it should be secure to keep your business data private. It should be able to support virtual networks too so you can separate your internet traffic to suit your needs, e.g. using part of your bandwidth for voice-only traffic. It should also offer a static IP address as many business systems rely on this for authentication.
I hope this sheds some light on the benefits of cellular internet access. Do not hesitate to contact me if you would like to find out more.