Amor Publishes Satellite Article for Online Magazine

Amor Publishes Satellite Article for Online Magazine

Microspace VP & GM Joe Amor wrote the following feature article for SatNews OnLine Magazine. The web publication covers satellite, broadband, cable, broadcasting and mutli-media industries.

Joe Amor
Microspace VP & GM Joe Amor

Add Telco Circuits or Expand With Satellite? A Corporate Network Decision Process
by Joe Amor

Your corporate users are clamoring to get more data to the field offices. Marketing has new PowerPoint presentations that need to get in the sales force’s hands. Human Resources has a multimedia video update on safety concerns. Information Services is constantly sending out software updates, including anti-virus protection, that need to be downloaded to everyone’s computer. And the president wants to do monthly “town meetings” talking about the activities of the corporation.

Do these requests sound familiar?

As a network planner for your corporate network, you are being told to support more applications like these to more locations with almost no increases to your present budget. And you think, “That’s impossible.'”

Not quite. With satellite broadcast added with your existing terrestrial network, all of this and more is possible! Let’s see how it works.

We met with a client who needed to get more of this type of content to their field offices. Their bandwidth calculations resulted in a multi-drop T1 circuit to 691 domestic sites. They got several price quotes from various telco operators, only to be sticker-shocked by the $1.4 million monthly fees. Microspace proposed a T1 satellite broadcast network for less than $34 thousand per month.

The client was pleasantly surprised! Instead of spending over $16 million a year they could get the functionality they needed for about $400,000 annually. How could this be? There are four basic points to consider when satellite broadcasting is better than terrestrial networks. Those four points are:

  • Why pay for two-way connections if the content is mostly broadcast?
  • Point-to-point circuits are often pointless.
  • Don’t share telco bandwidth for sending information.
  • Satellite networks are secure.

Why Pay for Two-Way Connections If the Content Is Mostly Broadcast?
Why indeed? First, look at your applications. Satellite broadcasting is ideal for exactly that, broadcasting or SENDING the same content from one point to multiple points. What content do you send out? Inventory files, point-of-sale pricing tables, daily summary reports, software updates, and multimedia videos are typical types of broadcast-friendly content.

To distribute this type of broadcast-friendly content you don’t need two-way connectivity, so why pay for it? Two-way networks have an inherently higher cost over one-way, simply because they are bi-directional. Therefore to minimize network expenses, determine what content is broadcast-friendly and send that via satellite.

Point-to-Point Is Pointless
Many terrestrial networks are built on point-to-point telco circuits. With some applications, like credit card verification, that is the right thing to do, but what about the content you are broadcasting out? Using a point-to-point topology is costly and time consuming.

Let’s use the earlier client example. Let’s say they needed to send a one-hour file to their 691 locations. With point-to-point circuits, file distribution is often done sequentially. Therefore, in this case delivering that file to 691 sites means it will take 691 hours. With a satellite broadcast network all sites get the content at the same time. The same file that took 691 hours by point-to-point circuits can be delivered in just one hour by satellite. What a time saver for the network staff!

Don’t Share Telco Bandwidth for Sending Information
There already are certain mission-critical transactional applications running on your existing circuits. These circuits are already busy and often times too congested. They simply can’t handle the new applications. Rather than have broadcast-friendly applications compete with the transactional applications, put those on satellite. Using satellite you are now creating an overlaying infrastructure to carry a great deal of content to whereever you need to get it, without overtaxing the existing circuits.

With this overlay approach, you will have an added benefit of some network backup functionality. In fact many enterprises use their satellite broadcast network in disaster recovery and contingency planning, because they are reliable and secure.

Satellite Networks Are Secure
How secure, you ask? Unfortunately, hacking into corporate networks is all too common. With a satellite broadcast network your content is as safe as you want it to be. Different corporations use different levels of security measures, but one thing is consistent: Satellite networks are clearly more secure than the public Internet. Because of this fact, most satellite broadcast content is delivered behind enterprise firewalls. Satellite broadcasting promotes secure networks.

So, as your business applications grow, consider these four questions. Is the content broadcast-friendly? Is your staff already too busy? Is the existing network already congested? Is security of your firm’s content important? If you answer yes to each of these questions, satellite broadcasting may prove to be best way to expand your network. And compared to terrestrial circuits, you will probably save your company a lot of money.

Just like the network planner that has saved his company over $30 million dollars during the past two years.

Thanks to Greg Hurt for this capcom story.

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