Integrated T1 Progress Report
Thursday November 13, 2014,
11:32 pm ET
DRAPER, Utah, Nov. 13 /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.
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.
There are two basic "integrated" DS-1 configurations, analog and digital. The 24-line
bundle in which they come is termed a "trunk". The main difference between analog and
digital trunks is their flexibility. With digital trunks, voice lines not in use
can be dynamically reconfigured to carry data traffic, so they don't sit idle.
Analog trunks on the other hand can not change their function once configured
by the service provider. Data channels remain data channels and the same for
voice channels, even if there is no voice traffic.
The Integrated T1 line has two general flavors; analog and, of course, digital.
The term "trunk" is synonymous with an integrated T1 line, representing 24
bundled DS0 (regular 64KB) channels. Digital trunks form the basis technology
for dynamic integrated lines, which are capable of transporting digitized
versions of voice traffic in addition to regular data packets. This ability
of digital trunks to function in the data realm allows it the ability to
dynamically allocate traffic according to the application, allowing priority
for voice traffic and "re-claiming" that bandwidth for data transfer when the
phone call is completed. This ensures that none of the capacity of the
T1 line is ever wasted.
Evolution has lead to a better, cheaper alternative to TDM services that the Bells were
peddling for decades in a vacuum of competition. Now the industry, lead by the innovation
and great business practices of the CLECs, seems to have turned a corner - leaving the
incumbents playing catchup. Obviously, the main benefactor of all of this competition
is the small to medium size business - a segment of the market that was taken for granted
But how much longer will we continue to see improved technology, services, and prices?
It's all in the hands of the Federal Communications Commission, as they have the power
to sqwash the CLECs by proxy. No wonder AT&T and Verizon are the two biggest lobbying
powers in Washington. It makes you wonder what kind of services they would be able to
offer had they plowed that money into R&D instead of politics.