As provider of both business broadband and leased lines, our customers often ask us what’s the difference between the two. While both these services offer reliable and ultra-fast internet connectivity, they have some key differences to consider.
Below, the Chrome team have put together 20 key differences between leased lines and broadband. Before we dive in, let’s discuss them individually.
What is a leased line?
A leased line is a dedicated and secure communication line for the exclusive use of one business. Unlike regular broadband or internet services, which are shared by multiple users, a leased line provides a dedicated connection between two or more locations.
Leased lines can be used to provide a range of services, including internet connectivity, voice communication, and data transfer. They are tangible, because they can be used to connect multiple sites in same city or between different countries. They typically offer much higher bandwidth and lower latency than regular broadband services, making them ideal for critical applications, such as video conferencing or real-time data transfer.
What does broadband mean in business?
Broadband is an umbrella term that covers every ‘high-speed’ internet service. In this case high-speed just covers anything faster than dial-up.
Most broadband connections are generally delivered via an Internet Service Provider (ISP). A shared network, which many others in your geographical area will also use. Businesses often have much higher bandwidth requirements than residential users, so they need to be careful to choose a service that covers their needs.
‘Business Broadband’ tends to cater to this, allowing multiple staff members to use broadband without slowing it down. There are a range of technologies out there that can help speed up connections and optimise data usage for business.
Business broadband can be delivered through a variety of technologies such as fibre optic, which is the fastest available technology for delivering broadband. Businesses can also use ADSL, which is delivered through the UK’s copper cabling landline infrastructure. However, these are due to switch-off by 2025.
What are the differences between Leased Lines and Broadband?
- Dedicated vs Shared Connection: A leased line provides a dedicated connection between two points while broadband connections are shared among multiple users. This means that leased lines offer a guaranteed speed and quality of service, while broadband speeds can fluctuate depending on the number of users and activity on the network.
- Symmetrical vs Asymmetrical Speeds: Leased lines offer symmetrical speeds, meaning the download and upload speeds are the same. Broadband connections, on the other hand, typically offer faster download speeds than upload speeds.
- Guaranteed Bandwidth: Leased lines guarantee a specific amount of bandwidth for a business, which means that the business always rely on the same speed. With broadband, the bandwidth is shared among multiple users and can vary depending on the network usage.
- Service Level Agreements: Leased line providers offer service level agreements (SLAs), which ensure that the service will be available at all times and any issues will be resolved promptly. Broadband providers may not offer the same level of SLAs.
- Higher Cost: Leased lines are typically more expensive than broadband connections due to the dedicated nature of the service.
- Scalability: Leased lines can be easily scaled up or down to meet the changing needs of a business, while broadband connections may have limitations in terms of scalability.
- Installation Times: Leased lines require a dedicated installation process and can take longer to install than broadband connections.
- Static IP Addresses: Leased lines provide static IP addresses, which can be useful for businesses that need to run their own servers or VPNs. Broadband connections may not always provide static IP addresses.
- Network Security: Leased lines offer a more secure connection as the data is not shared with other users on the network. Broadband connections can be less secure due to the shared nature of the service.
- Quality of Service: Leased lines offer a guaranteed quality of service, which means that businesses can always rely on the same speed and performance. Broadband connections can experience fluctuations in speed and performance due to network congestion.
- Connection Reliability: Leased lines are more reliable than broadband connections, as they are less prone to outages or downtime.
- Customer Support: Leased line providers typically offer dedicated customer support for businesses, while broadband providers may not offer the same level of support.
- Upload and Download Limits: Broadband connections may have upload and download caps, which can limit the amount of data that businesses can transfer. Leased lines do not have these caps.
- Distance Limitations: Leased lines can be used over longer distances than broadband connections.
- Network Availability: Leased lines may not be available in all locations, while broadband connections are generally available in most areas.
- Service Type: Leased lines provide a dedicated, point-to-point connection, while broadband connections provide a shared connection.
- Latency: Leased lines offer lower latency than broadband connections, which can be important for businesses that require real-time data transfer.
- Service Customisation: Leased line providers can customise the service to meet the specific needs of a business, while broadband providers may have limitations in terms of customisation.
- Multiple Locations: Leased lines can be used to connect multiple locations, while broadband connections are typically used for a single location.
- Service Priority: Leased line providers can prioritise specific services or applications, ensuring that they receive the necessary bandwidth and quality of service. Broadband providers may not offer this level of service prioritisation.
Which one should I get? Broadband or Leased Line?
The choice between leased lines and broadband for your business depends on what your business needs. It’s important to consider the differences, so that you can make the right decision. You should consider:
- Bandwidth Requirements: If your business requires a guaranteed and consistent level of high-speed bandwidth for mission-critical applications, a leased line might be a better choice.
- Cost: Leased lines tend to be more expensive than broadband but provide a dedicated and reliable connection. Broadband is typically more affordable but can be not as fast.
- Location: Availability of leased lines and broadband services may vary depending on your location.
- Network Security: Leased lines provide an especially private and secure connection, which can be beneficial for businesses handling sensitive data.
- Latency and Reliability: Leased lines offer very low latency and high reliability, making them ideal for businesses that need real-time communication.
Chrome Telecom’s Connectivity Solutions
If you are looking to upgrade or change your broadband deal, Chrome has a wealth of experience if helping businesses get connected. Our award-winning team are always happy to help our customers, old and new, to reach their highest potential.
Get in touch to speak to us about securing a business broadband package that’s tailored to the needs of your business.