Friday, May 30, 2014

Is The Economy Affected By Slow Internet?

With the many people in the world that have access to high speed internet, it may be hard to believe there are still those without slow connections. But there is another aspect to slow internet that hasn't crossed the minds of many - how it affects the economy.

More and more people these days want faster internet, but so do businesses. But those living in rural areas have had a tough time getting the same level of connection as their big city counterparts.

The Importance of Technology

Technology is moving at a faster rate than ever before. And there is no business today that doesn't rely at least partially on a fast and reliable connection to get done what they need to. Without a high quality connection, there is no access to the products and services that allow businesses to grow. As well, a business without a reliable internet connection may not be able to use their current resources to their full potential.

Experts say that the economy's future will particularly depend on the progression of internet technology. And right now, it seems that the capability to have a connection is a greater reality, with companies expanding their infrastructure to make internet available to more customers. But what do internet speeds look like? Have they gotten any faster?

The Status Quo

Before, it seemed as though customers were paying high prices for internet speeds that were moderate at best. This was fine for internet companies, but what about the customer? And why was this the status quo, despite the fact that the technology to improve costs and how internet is delivered was already there?

Today, incredibly high speed internet is available, but at a significant cost to the consumer. One company's internet service can cost a customer as much as $300 per month. Where this is the case, a business wanting fast internet could be paying much more than they need to be. This could cause them to attempt to defray their costs and stay within budget by going for a slower internet option. But again, this means not using their resources to their full potential, which could negatively affect their long-term revenues and ultimately, the economy's health.

Is Fast Internet At A Profit Possible?

Many wonder whether or not fast internet connections can be offered while still allowing internet companies to earn a profit. And at least one company is proving that this is a possibility, with gigabit fiber-optic internet on their menu at just $70 per month, and basic service at no cost. But this particular company isn't planning to enter themselves as an internet provider, preferring instead to simply prove that an ultra-fast connection at an affordable price is possible.

A Changing Workforce

No longer are workers showing up or expected to be in the office all day long. Today, telecommuting is the new way to earn money. Many employers are encouraging their employees to work from home. This is resulting in much less stress for many workers, who can now spend more time in a home office setting with their kids. Not only that, but working from home has reduced wasted time in meetings, as well as saved employers full-time staffing costs. These, along with the many other benefits of telecommuting have definitely benefited the economy. But without fast internet, creativity, innovation and the entrepreneurial spirit are stifled.

Continue The Momentum

There are several communities who have many initiatives in place. But unfortunately, the internet speeds to keep the momentum going are simply non-existent. Without this, it isn't only businesses that suffer, but communities as well. Those communities wishing to expand and establish themselves as a place where businesses can thrive will have a difficult time convincing those they are trying to attract to their area.

Recent net neutrality rulings may see a slippery slope where the differences between the speeds of ISPs becoming a political issue, which many say will only complicate things down the road for consumers, who could eventually see higher prices.

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Guest author Renee Manson writes on a variety of technology-related topics. She recommends High Speed Internet Providers as a resource for helping consumers compare their options in broadband.

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