At GP Associates, Inc., we often get asked by leaders of communities why they should consider providing fiber optic cable installation, either aerial or underground, for the families and businesses in their community. On the surface, it can seem like an unnecessary expense when standard cable options seem to be doing the job just fine. The reality is that times have changed and are continuing to change with more bandwidth being needed now than ever before, and that shows no signs of changing. Just as years ago dial-up connections at a snail speed had to make way for broadband, it is time to press forward and address the demand for speedy and reliable internet connectivity.
The great thing about fiber optics is that you have built-in growth. While these systems can handle the one gigabit per second (1,000 Mbps) that is the current highest residential standard, this technology could easily handle several terabits and perhaps more without the need to replace the fiber optic cables. To further examine why this is a good move for communities, let’s examine what a typical household requires today to appease a variety of devices.
- Smart Watch– It takes 8 Kbps to operate a smart watch.
- Home Assistance– It takes 512 Kbps to operate a home assistance system.
- Wireless Speakers– A home stereo system’s wireless speakers average 320 Kbps.
- Video Chats– Varies based on the number of callers, but a 3-way chat would be about 6 Mbps.
- Videoconferencing– People who work from home often need to join online meetings, at the tune of 12 Mbps needed.
- Mobile Phones– Each mobile phone in a household requires roughly 1 Mbps.
- Wireless Security Cameras– Security cameras, including baby monitors, require 6 Mbps for each one. A smart doorbell is a bit lower at 2 Mbps.
- Smart Appliances– Smart refrigerators are gaining in popularity and require 8 Mbps. Wi-Fi enabled laundry appliances need 12 Mbps.
- Smart Thermostat– It takes 6 Mbps to operate a smart thermostat.
- Gaming Systems– High-tech gaming systems can require as much as 50 Mbps.
- Smart TVs– Most households have multiple televisions, with each needing 25 Mbps.
- Computers– It all depends on what is being used and what is being done, but it is not uncommon to need 50 Mbps or more for each desktop, laptop, and tablet being operated in the household.