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Are You Ready for the PSTN Switch Off?

PSTN or Public Switched Telephone Network is the aggregate of the world’s circuit-switched telephone networks and as we often mention, as our landline.

But why is this important and why should you care about it?

Well, there are lots of reasons that you probably are not aware of – the reality is that there is not a lot of coverage about it, yet, but you have to start taking measures to safeguard your future.

In 2025, the PSTN Switch Off will happen via BT Openreach.

This is all landlines being cut and replaced digitally. Despite the UK not being the first country to make this move, it can be quite stressful – it will be completely changed and renewed.

So, this huge change will happen for everyone – both businesses and residential – and it is something that nobody can avoid. 

The benefits of the Switch off include:

Cost Saving

VoIP is considered to be way more cost-effective as instead of using additional hardware you are connected to the internet connection.

Reliability

As there are no physical lines that may be disrupted by some road works, for example, VoIP can be more reliable due to using your internet, which can be 10 times faster than your landline. Furthermore, you need to have a good internet connection, and Gigabit Networks can help you with it.

Quality

The quality of phone calls will increase (depending on your connectivity) – being a positive reason for businesses as it is a crucial time-saver – and for people at home as you feel closer to your loved ones.

Seamless connection

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the world evolved reasonably quickly, with businesses adapting to flexible working and many workers becoming fully remote. 

The main secret for all of these to work smoothly is fast Internet connectivity and Cloud. 

With VoIP, what will happen is the start of a revolution that will end when all devices are connected to each other, with a seamless connection that works on a smooth ecosystem, making your life easier.

Despite all these benefits, some people may indeed be negatively impacted by this change – and that is why everyone should be educated in this, with time, to understand what can be done. 

The main affected ones will be people who aren’t used to technology and people who live in rural areas that rely on landlines. 

However, BT Openreach has said that replacement products will be available for everyone, depending on their individual needs and location.

The main advice to help you prepare for the 2025 Switch Off is instead of renewing your landline number when your contract is over, update it to a VoIP replacement. 

If it is for your business this can mean that you are a step ahead of your competition, and if it is for your household, it takes off the stress you will be upon when being obliged to do it.

It is truly important to have more than just a good internet connection – as every day new updates will continue to come, and the internet will be the main asset to have, in order to function all your devices efficiently. 

GigaFast broadband allows you to navigate at up to 930Mbps at only £49 per month, being this, one of the best prices per speed you will get in the market.

Soon, we will also be able to provide you with VoIP landline replacement for only £6 extra on top of whichever broadband package you choose to acquire.

Take a look at our ultrafast GigaFast packages here to secure an ultra-reliable network for your future VoIP landline.

How your SME can harness the power of the cloud – 3 important tools

In 2022 your small business must be digitally optimised, so if you aren’t already utilising the Cloud then why haven’t you caught up?

Getting used to new tech can be daunting at first, but the advantages the Cloud can have for your businesses are endless, and so many cloud-based tools are free. All you need is a good internet connection – but we’ve got you sorted there.

What is the Cloud?

In the digital space when we talk about the Cloud, we don’t mean the ones in the sky! 

The tech industry tends to make the Cloud sound like some ominous out-of-reach being that is far beyond anyone’s understanding – certainly not something to be used by a small business such as yours.

Realistically the Cloud is much less daunting than it seems. It is essentially a term for services and software run on the internet rather than being run on your computer, however most cloud services can be accessed through your computer aswell.

It’s likely you’re already using some Cloud services without knowing it. Tools such as Dropbox and Google Drive are well-known cloud services that many people and businesses use. 

Well, what can the Cloud do for my business?

Whether you’re an e-commerce business or you have a physical shop – there’s something the cloud can do for all of us. It could be organisation, back-ups or implementing a hybrid working model – the Cloud can help you do it all.

From accessing programmes to storing data, the uses of the Cloud are endless and can be very overwhelming. 

We have decided to handpick our top 3 Cloud tools that will help your small business get started. Couple these tools with a GigaFast connection and you’ll have everything you need to digitally optimise your small business.

Cloud storage – Google Drive

Cloud storage is where data and applications are stored on separate servers and accessed via the internet. 

This means you no longer have to worry about your computer or phone having enough storage, or a certain document only being on one device, the Cloud has that handled for you!

Having a Cloud storage solution also means you don’t ever have to worry about losing data or information, everything is stored away in the cloud where you can access it 24/7. 

You also won’t have to worry about massive filing cabinets or extra office space just for information, digital storage is the future.

Our favourite cloud storage tool is Google Drive. It is free to use and allows you to store files across all your devices in a simple and easy-to-use interface. These files can also be shared with team members or kept private if needed. A much easier alternative to passing papers around in meetings.

SaaS – Google Workspace

SaaS means software-as-a-service and is the future of working in the post-covid world. 

SaaS platforms will enable your business to function from your business site, from home or from anywhere in the world (as long as you have a device and a stable internet connection). 

Our favourite SaaS tool is the Google Workspace, you’re probably already aware of a few aspects of this suite of tools. It includes popular apps such as Gmail and Google Calendar. Google drive is also a part of Google Workspace – it’s amazing how much everything in the Cloud links together!

Google Workspace also includes other applications such as google docs, google sheets, google slides, google forms, google meets and more.

All of your work within these applications can sync up in your google drive and you can collaborate with other members of your team at any time. It is essentially a virtual workspace, making home and hybrid working so much easier – and best of all, it’s free!

Cloud hosting

Now, this tool may not be 100% relevant to every small business but if your website is giving you trouble, or if you find yourself with larger spikes of visitors, cloud website hosting might be the solution for you. 

This also might be a solution to think about for the future. As your small business grows, you’re going to need to eventually have a website with a larger capacity.

With shared website hosting, (what most people use) your server may be slow as it is shared with others. 

With dedicated hosting, you get an entire server to yourself, but as you can imagine, the costs aren’t very small business-friendly.

With cloud hosting, your website is hosted in the cloud – with virtual server space. This means bandwidth is spread across multiple servers essentially ruling out many issues that you may find with other web hosting alternatives. This solution is especially great if you use e-commerce.

Our favourite cloud hosting tool is Hostinger. At just £7.99 a month on a 48-month plan, their prices are extremely small business-friendly and they offer unlimited bandwidth, fast server speeds and an excess of other features.

Our top 5 digital tools that your small business needs

Starting and maintaining a small business is a tough job and with the massive digitization we’ve seen after COVID, small business owners need to figure out how to keep up.

There is an abundance of digital tools out there and sometimes it can be overwhelming trying to figure out what to dedicate your time to. That’s why we’ve decided to put together our 10 favourite digital tools that have helped grow Gigabit Networks from the ground up!

These tools combined with our GigaFast Business Fibre product will set you up for success. Ultrafast, ultra-reliable internet speeds and a streamlined and organised working process will help any small business to flourish. 

Trello

For a small business – organisation is everything. Keeping organised will help you to stay on top of tasks and optimise productivity. It’s very easy for smaller tasks written on a random piece of paper to be forgotten or lost.

With Trello, you’ll never have to worry about organising your tasks again. Trello allows you to designate certain tasks to cards and organise these cards onto boards. This way you can organise your to-do list for the week or set certain goals for the year.

Trello also allows collaboration so you can see what other team members are working on or work on tasks together with colleagues. 

Price: as a small business you will probably only ever need the free version of Trello. However, they do have a premium package with a few extra perks for $10 per month which is great for teams of up to 100.

Zoom

Video conferencing is massively important for any small business in 2022. Simple phone calls are now a thing of the past – Zoom is the new way to remotely run your small business and catch up with colleagues and employees. 

Zoom has plenty of great features that make it 10x better than a normal call. You’re able to share your screen so that you can do sales pitches remotely or collaborate with team members on a piece of work. 

Zoom also allows for meeting to be recorded meaning if a colleague can’t make it, they can still catch up.

Price: Zoom has a free package where you can host up to 100 participants for 40 minutes or a one-to-one meeting for up to 30 hours. If you think you’ll need a little more than this then the zoom pro package is £119.90 per year and allows hosting of up to 100 participants for up to 30 hours as well as a few added extras.

Canva

As a small business, it isn’t always cost-effective to outsource your design work, sometimes you just have to get it done yourself. That’s why Canva is perfect. 

Combining a simple-to-use interface with plenty of widgets, templates and even some royalty-free images, Canva allows even the most novice graphic designers to create logos, social posts, and campaigns.

Price: The free version of Canva is great, it has hundreds of thousands of templates and photos and allows for collaboration. Canva pro, however, combines all of the great features of the free version with millions of stock photos, videos, audio and graphics. As well as plenty of other great features to make graphic design so much easier – all for just £10.99 a month. 

WordPress

WordPress is a high-quality tool allowing users to create blogs or websites. It is by-far the most popular tool of it’s type and appeals to so many different online spaces.

WordPress also has free plugins and themes to make the process of website and blog creation so much easier and compatible with other online domains.

Price: WordPress does have a free package, but their business package is perfect for small businesses. For just £27 a month it allows hosting, payment collection, premium themes, google analytics integration and so much more!

Active Campaign

Active Campaign is the perfect tool for engaging with your customers and allows for the automation of so many processes that are usually mundane and tedious. They also have excellent customer service options via chat and email support.

Active Campaign’s email marketing feature allows you to hand-create customised email campaigns with an immense amount of detail. As a small business, email marketing should be a key part of your strategy; it is free after all!

The CRM and sales automation feature of Active Campaign also allows you to manage all your contacts in one place, which is so important for organisation and productivity.

Price: Billed monthly an Active Campaign lite subscription will cost $15/mo. This covers 500 contacts and includes loads of helpful features such as over 100 email templates, over 500 automation recipes and unlimited email sending. 

5 Reasons Why Your Business Needs FTTP Broadband

What is FTTP broadband? FTTP stands for Fibre To The Premises which is where fibre broadband is directed straight to a home instead of a cabinet that services an area. It’s faster, more reliable and a lot more secure.

But why does a business need FTTP? And what daily benefits are available with it?

1. High Performance 

Unlike FTTC (Fibre To The Cabinet), the main benefit is that FTTP is a direct fibre connection and has the highest speed capacity than standard fibre broadband, because of this, FTTP can reach speeds up to 20x faster than your average broadband. There is nothing that compares.

2. Cost Effective 

“Slow internet causes costly delays in your company’s operations and workflow management. It’s been revealed the average employee wastes one week per year waiting for their network to respond”-  Nick Hastreiter. 

Now multiply this by 100 employees. 

3. Ultra-reliable

If you are living in a busy home with multiple devices or if you’re a business owner you will almost certainly benefit a lot more from FTTP.  Why? Not only is it a lot faster, but there are less chances of your internet cutting out half way through an important email or call to a client.  

4. Rapid Installation 

While FTTC is the most common and accessible option for many, FTTP is only available to 15% of households, but this is soon to change as the government has a target to get more homes connected. 

Your area is not serviced yet? You can show your interest here and we will do the rest.

5. Upgrade at anytime 

You are able to upgrade your business at any time, so that you can enjoy ultrafast broadband without the penalties. 

Want to find out more? Check out our product page visiting GigaFast FTTP here.

Gigabit Networks to join CityFibre’s Revolutionary Full Fibre Network in Coventry

Gigabit Networks is proud to announce it is to offer ultrafast, reliable, full fibre, gigabit-speed broadband to 131,500 premises in Coventry, including schools and the NHS, starting this month.

Services will be available over the CityFibre network, which is investing an additional £12.5million to boost its original £60million investment in rolling out full fibre across the city.

Gigabit Networks joins a growing list of consumer internet service providers (ISPs) to offer full fibre services to consumers over CityFibre’s national open access networks.

CityFibre is currently engaged in an up to £4billion gigabit city investment programme and we will be the latest consumer ISP to become a partner.

Speaking of the agreement, Leigh Hunt, city manager at CityFibre, said: “Working with Gigabit Networks, we will help support Coventry’s diverse communities by giving them access to the fastest and most reliable broadband speeds in the UK. This partnership will further broaden the choice of ISPs available on the CityFibre network

“We look forward to seeing even more homes and businesses take advantage of this state-of-the-art connectivity and what it can enable in the future.”

David Yates, co-founder of Gigabit Networks, which is based in the Midlands, added: “Our partnering with CityFibre means we are capable of truly bridging the digital divide across the Midlands. Coventry is a city with deep history, culture and industry-leading innovation. Joining the CItyFibre ultrafast network means greater prospects for people across the city.”

For more information about CityFibre’s investment in Coventry visit cityfibre.com/gigabit-cities.

To register your interest, visit gigabitnetworks.co.uk/coventry

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Gigabit Networks & Internet4Schools Partnership: Schools in the Midlands to get internet access at gigabit speeds

Gigabit Networks – the Midlands champion for ultrafast internet – and Internet4Schools are today announcing a partnership that will drive internet speeds in schools up to gigabit speeds. 

For many schools this will represent at least a 10-times increase in current speeds, enabling more apps, digital learning and better-quality remote learning if required in the future. The Midlands-wide initiative combines next-gen internet technology with industry-leading content filtering and safe-guarding services – to bring world-class, fast and safe, connectivity to schools in the Midlands.

“This partnership brings together expertise in digital products and a comprehensive understanding of the future of technology in the education sector.” said Chris Kastel, MD of Internet4Schools. “It is really exciting to announce a partnership with Gigabit Networks – together we will deliver gigabit-capable internet access which will accelerate the learning and development of pupils in an ever-evolving online world.”

The technology enables teachers’ activities such as advanced-lesson planning as well as concepts such as augmented and virtual reality – that rely on ultra-reliable connectivity – that can advance and accelerate children’s online learning and educational development.

Gigabit Networks, based in Leicester, works exclusively with CityFibre to deliver its connectivity. Its mission is to bridge the digital divide in the Midlands. CityFibre is investing over £5Bn across the UK to build a completely new and independent full fibre network with a significant amount of that committed to the Midlands. Because the CityFibre network is new, prices for the world-grade internet speeds are now more affordable. 

Pure fibre connectivity from Gigabit Networks – allows for symmetrical download and uploads speeds of up to 1Gbps – more than 20 times faster than the UK average.

“Partnering with Internet4Schools provides a fantastic opportunity to advance the digital transformation in the Midlands education sector.” said David Yates, Co-Founder of Gigabit Networks. “Internet4Schools has a deep understanding of the digital needs and requirements of schools and has a track record of delivering exceptional services to the region. We are delighted to partner with them.”

To find out more about the service for your school – visit the Internet4Schools website here, or contact Gigabit Networks here.

Digital Midlands: Connecting entrepreneurs, investors and talent

The month of April saw the launch of a brand new online publication – Digital Midlands.

The platform aims to bring together a community of entrepreneurs, investors and talent in the world of technology and innovation.

“We see so much potential in the Midlands for great collaboration and investment,” said Dan Ilett, Partner at 4 Oceans Ventures.

“We are focusing our portfolio on the Midlands, as we realised there isn’t really a publication or community to bring together the brilliant stories of tech creativity.”

Digital Midlands was founded due to the rich talent that can be found in the region and the potential for new business & innovation opportunities – yet the area often gets overlooked by investors.

Therefore, Digital Midlands will act as a voice to connect those stories and develop opportunities alongside the wealth of graduate talent, universities and start up businesses in the Midlands.

Gigabit Networks is proud to be a partner of Digital Midlands by sponsoring a series of webinars and events with digital thought leaders in the region.

Moving forward, the online community – an initiative led by 4 Oceans Ventures – aims to be the home for creativity, growth and resources for all things digital in the Midlands ecosystem.

Visit their website now to read the latest news in tech, innovation and investment – and sign up to their newsletter to stay in-the-know, and become a part of the Digital Midlands community.

The Future of UK Business with Gigabit: £43.15bn Projected Economic Impact

What would you do with lightning fast, 1Gbps-speed internet?

Download a full-length HD movie in 12 seconds? Or get your hands on Call of Duty: Warzone in less than 5 minutes? 

This is just the tip of the iceberg for the future of internet use in the U.K – thanks to Gigabit Networks and CityFibre. 

No More Copper with Gigabit PureFibre

Current copper broadband infrastructure that is common in the UK is old, outdated and restricts you from doing the things that matter. 

Weather can easily damage or cut out your connection, fix times are slow – and we all know the curse of peak-time streaming hours.

By switching to PureFibre, these worries are a thing of the past. 

Gigabit internet presents to the UK an amazing opportunity in economic growth and business development.

Because of outdated digital infrastructure, one in five businesses in the UK are currently struggling with an unreliable internet connection.

And did you know that every employee lose on average a week of productivity every year due to slow internet speed?

Gigabit PureFibre has the ability to accelerate and future-proof any business premises – by equipping its employees with a virtually limitless capacity. 

Enabling Economic Growth

Over the next 15 years, it is predicted that Gigabit PureFibre – provided on the multi-billion pound, Goldman Sachs-backed CityFibre network – will benefit the UK with a £43.15bn total economic impact (according to research conducted by Regeneris). This ranges from benefits in the healthcare sector, to private housing and businesses and start-ups of all sizes, up and down the country. 

The breakdown of this research is as follows:

gigabit

The future is digital – and Gigabit Networks are dedicated to providing businesses in the UK with the tools they need to remain competitive, and do their jobs as easily and carefree as possible.

There are currently over half a million premises live on the CityFibre network, with a plan to expand to over 5 million premises by 2025. You can check if your business premises has Gigabit capability here.

Go Bigger on your bandwidth, productivity, accessibility and internet speeds – with PureFibre from Gigabit Networks. Read more about our products here.

Happy Health Care with Gigabit Networks.

With advances in the internet of health care come the connectivity challenges for healthcare operators across the UK. As their internet connections get bombarded by an ever increasing array of devices and services, is it any wonder it’s slow?

It doesn’t have to be any more with Gigabit Networks.

Can your residents and patients communicate with family and friends easily, or keep themselves entertained while waiting for care?

Can your staff send, download, and access important data and medical records safely and at a speed to do their jobs effectively?

MRI’s, X-rays, smart beds, oxygen monitoring devices and proximity sensors all require a fast, reliable internet connection; without one can your patients be provided with the most essential treatments and monitoring without complication? 

Internet speeds are now paving the way for both the efficiency and flexibility of health care tasks and treatments. A PureFibre connection will become an essential for every hospital, care home, and clinic across the country.

With the ongoing pandemic causing non-essential appointments and therapies to move online, health care has to get up to speed with Gigabit capable internet to provide the best care.

Why Gigabit Networks?

Gigabit internet services are ultrafast, ultra-reliable connections capable of delivering symmetrical access tot he internet at speeds of 1Gbps or more.

Our GigaPure Ethernet Direct delivers up to 10Gbps and is monitored 24/7, we even guarantee 100% uptime.

Using advanced innovative technology, our fibre ethernet connection is more cost-effective and reliable then ever before. This allows us to offer health care locations, close to our network, extremely affordable dedicated bandwidth of 1Gbps or more.

Happier and Healthier Care with Gigabit Networks

What this means is that:

  • Patients and care home residents can stream entertainment to devices without any excessive strain on your network. This helps your carers and IT team keep people happy.
  • Family can rest easy knowing their loved ones are receiving the best possible care, “FaceTiming” with ease and without delay or communication issues. 
  • Appointments can be scheduled with ease whilst digital data, high-resolution scans and records are transferred safely, securely, and speedily – providing your admin staff the resources they need without any hassle.
  • Practitioners and Doctors can provide the best mental and physical health care from a distance with software like Microsoft Teams and Zoom without having to worry about internet speeds.

Gigabit Networks can help you to provide happy and healthy care to everybody in hospitals, care homes, and clinics. 

Get in contact with us today for more information on dedicated packages for healthcare.

Are you getting ripped off on ethernet internet fees?

Ethernet fibre internet circuits are now way cheaper than they used to be.  

Even just a few years ago, you could easily have paid in excess of £1000 a month for a 1Gbps fibre connection.

But the game has changed.  

Advances in fibre ethernet technology and availability throughout the UK mean that fibre is not only more abundant and reliable – but a lot less expensive than it has been

This means companies can get more bandwidth, productivity and digital oomph – for a lot less money. And 2021 is a great year to be looking for budget efficiencies. 

CityFibre’s brand new fibre network is totally independent of BT. It has the latest technology to drive it and comes with a 100% uptime guarantee. 

We came across one charity in the Midlands that was paying £800 a month for a 100Mb ‘business’ line.

There is something not quite right about that… 

Market Speeds Vs Prices 

It is worth seeking out the best quality connectivity – especially where critical business functions must not fail. Only a dedicated service will provide guaranteed speeds and great reliability. 

But don’t be fooled into thinking that market has not moved much.  

It has. 

In fact, in some cases, we have seen companies buy three new gigabit circuits with guaranteed speeds and better reliability agreements for the price of one old-school circuit from the traditional vendors. 

Also consider ‘advertised speed’ vs ‘actual speeds’, which are often much lower. You can’t accept that as more business relies on fast connections.  

If you’re not getting the full service as advertised, your business is getting ripped off. Now is the time to make a change. 

Gigabit Networks Delivers A Better Solution 

Internet connectivity tech is now going to evolve at a much faster rate in the UK.   

If your organisation took out a deal at £800 per month for each gigabit on its fibre ethernet circuits two or three years ago, you’d have been ecstatic with that price.  

Thankfully, that is all changing with the CityFibre network

The network uses advanced tech to make ethernet circuits cheaper and more reliable. Gigabit Networks helps you unlock the full potential of the latest advancements by delivering a fast internet service that is tailored specifically to your business, providing dedicated bandwidth (up to 10gbps) that is set by you. 

Crucially, those speeds are guaranteed in both directions (uploads and downloads) and the price includes 24/7 monitoring and management as well as a 5 hour guaranteed fix time at a price point of around 50% of similar offerings. 

In an age where our reliance on reliable and fast internet connections is greater than ever, paying less could so easily buy you more productivity and help to transform the future of your company forever. 

Find out more about our services here.

ABOUT

Our mission is to bridge the digital divide for Midlands Residents and Businesses by delivering the fastest, most reliable internet connectivity available in the UK

CONTACT US

3rd Floor, St. George’s House, 6 St George’s Way, Leicester, LE1 1QZ