Prices Continue to Come Down on Integrated Products
Friday May 23, 2014,
09:05 am ET
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, May. 23 /Patrick Oborn/ --
For many small to medium size businesses, higher productivity with relation to their broadband
and voice services is just around the corner. Thanks in part to the recent price reduction trend
in the industry, carriers have deemed it necessary to consolidate in order to offer more services
at a lower cost than their rivals. Overlapping networks have been consolidated into leaner, more
feature-rich versions of their previous selves, dramatically lowering the price small businesses
pay for the popular dynamic integrated T-carrier (T-1) lines that combine local voice and
high-speed Internet service into one connection.
From 1997 to 2007, the average cost of a POTS (plain old telephone service) line from the
Bells has hovered in the $50 - $80 per month price range. During this same time period,
integrated DS1 (digital signal 1) lines - which is the equivalent of 24 standard lines -
have come down in price from $1000 per month to $400. Small to medium size businesses
who have more than 5 phone lines can now actually save money by upgrading their service.
"I am very satisfied with my new XO dynamic T1" added Mike McLoude, a small business
owner in Santa Monica, California. "The flexible nature of the system allows me to
conduct business with the same efficiency as many of my bigger competitors, for less
than what they pay." Mr. McLoude is not alone - many Californians are seeing the
technology light and taking the leap of faith away from traditional TDM.
The two basic Integrated T1 line configurations, as they exist in today's
market, are analog and digital. Commonly referred to as "trunks", these 24-channel
bundles transmit TDM signals directly to the service provider's network via a
local loop. Unlike analog trunks, whose configuration can not change once the
channels have been allocated, digital "dynamic" lines can change reconfigure
themselves from data, to voice, and back again. This ability to reclaim voice
channels for data broadband access when not in use gives the user the performance
of two T1's in one.
Change does not happen quickly in an industry as so heavily regulated as Telecommunications.
Recent industry consolidation has provided huge alternatives to the incumbents, who
are now under pressure to keep up with new technologies while charging better prices
to retain and attract new customer bases.
The only thing that can get in the way of future progress is the law. You know, the one
that requires the RBOCs to lease their local loops to CLECs at a reduced rate so that
the customer can get a dedicated connection between their office and the CLECs' network.
If the FCC decided to lift this requirement, this whole deck of cards could come down
in a hurry, and when it does, you can kiss dynamic integrated T1 service for under $500