Modern connectivity has changed the way in which businesses operate and use new services to give consumers better communication avenues. Connectivity has also improved during the pandemic, due to remote working and a massive shift to online business. This has helped enterprises to speed up innovation through automation, blockchain and advanced analytics.
The demand for data has created a new and improved connectivity network for businesses. But what does this mean for the future with regards to connectivity and how can African businesses get ready for this?
New forms of connectivity
When the internet was first introduced, it was expensive, intermittent and it was unrealistic for the majority of the population. But, companies like SEACOM, have created new and improved connectivity solutions that are reliable and affordable for businesses. This has created an overall decrease in costs for connectivity and has improved many Africans’ access to the internet.
- 5G – In today’s technologically-advanced business environment, speed is important. Networks need to be improved as the demand for more data and bandwidth rises. The fifth generation of wireless technology, also known as 5G, will be introduced soon. It will enable over 1000 times more data transmission capacity and it also has 10 times lower latency than current 4G networks.
- Fibre – Fibre will remain the backbone of connectivity for the foreseeable future. 5G and fibre work together to ensure complete reliability and higher speed of networks through the 5G transmitters. For businesses, a solid fibre network is essential for next generation connectivity. It will take time for new forms of connectivity to become widely available and more reliable. Businesses cannot afford to be inactive while this occurs, thus reliable fibre network investment is critical.
- Cloud – Businesses now need to be able to manage their operations from any device and at any time, due to the pandemic. Cloud solutions will ensure that businesses can enable employees to work from home with access to important information. This will also ensure that customers can interact with the company online as well.
Cloud solutions enable businesses to create a flexible and scalable future growth strategy. It also secures important data on a remote server. Businesses can expand without the need for expensive hardware or having to maintain this data on-site.
While many private businesses have yet to switch to the cloud, as they might have little knowledge and understanding of the technology, there is a rapid uptake of this type of solution. Businesses who decide to employ cloud solutions will benefit from greater flexibility, security and efficiency for connectivity.
Next generation networks
African data traffic is expected to increase 12 times from now until 2025. The need for flexible networks is important for companies to meet these increasing demands. A software-defined wide area network, also known as SD-WAN, is the ideal modern solution. It allows businesses to better manage their networks from a central location. SD-WAN also eliminates costly routing and reduces hardware expenses, while allowing businesses to access many cloud services at the same time.
Businesses who are able to fully integrate digital technology will remain highly competitive and at the top of their industry. It is important for each business to create a clear strategy when it comes to connectivity. This is to ensure that they can project growth into the future. A strategy will prepare companies for implementation of next generation connectivity technologies.
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