Managed Service Bundles Help Ease SMB Challenges, but ROI is Key

Cindy Whelan – Principal Analyst, Network and Wholesale Services
Cindy Whelan – Principal Analyst, Network and Wholesale Services

Summary Bullets:

• Service providers are taking advantage of the rise in cloud services to create managed service bundles, providing small and mid-size businesses (SMBs) with a one-stop shop for solutions delivered at a single monthly rate.

• SMBs have an increasing array of options to support a move away from capital investment to an operational expense model, managed service bundles offer the potential to reduce complexity and manage costs.

SMBs, defined by Current Analysis as those with 20 to 500 employees, represent a sizable segment of communications users. Tier 1 providers such as AT&T, CenturyLink and Verizon have typically served this segment with business bundles that package business lines and Internet service under a single monthly fee for very small businesses, and PRIs and network-hosted VoIP for larger SMBs. Over the last several years, and coincident with the rise of new competitors in the form of cable operators such as Comcast Business and Time Warner Cable Business and over-the-top providers such as 8×8, major service providers have reinforced their focus on the SMB segment, reshaping partner strategies, adding tools and portals, and expanding VoIP and UC solutions to include managed bundle offers that frees SMBs from the task of managing communications services.

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802.11ah/HaLow: Do We Really Need Another Protocol?

M. Fratto
M. Fratto

• 802.11ah/HaLow offers long range, low power wireless connectivity compared to other 802.11 protocols.

• In a vacuum, more options to choose from is beneficial, but in reality, more options lead to complications.

From the “yet another IoT wireless standard” category comes 802.11ah, what the Wi-Fi Alliance is calling HaLow, which is a wireless protocol that operates in the unlicensed 900Mhz spectrum – promising longer range, better penetration through walls, and lower power than 802.11a/b/g/n/ac. That’s great and I look forward to seeing deployments that can verify those claims because range and battery power are two limitations in IoT deployments that are difficult to overcome and could be showstoppers if they require significant investment in time or money to address.

Continue reading “802.11ah/HaLow: Do We Really Need Another Protocol?”