Companies Learning That Business-Class Routers Are A Necessity

Posted: Sep 23 2017, 3:04am CDT | by , in News

Companies Learning that Business-Class Routers are a Necessity
Companies Learning that Business-Class Routers are a Necessity

More and More Businesses Saying No to DIY Routers

When bootstrapping a startup or trying to run a lean small business, it’s easy to cut some corners and try to save a few bucks where you can. One area where a lot of businesses trim the fat is with IT – and routers in particular. But it appears that we’re finally at a turning point and companies are starting to recognize the benefits of going with business-class routers.

Reasons to Choose Business Class Routers

There’s a reason technology companies frequently release two versions of a product and it has little to do with bolstering sales or diversifying revenue streams. They release personal and enterprise-grade products because the former aren’t equipped to handle the rigorous needs of businesses.

Whether it’s a piece of software or hardware, a product that you use in your own home for your personal needs doesn’t typically translate very well in the workplace – especially when you’re talking about a scaled up business with dozens or hundreds of users.

When it comes to routers, in particular, using a product that’s designed for personal use can have catastrophic consequences in terms of both performance and security.

“Just like your computer, your router has a processor with a certain speed and amount of available memory,” IT consultant James Berger notes. “And, some routers are stronger than others. That might not matter much at home, where you have a slower connection with a half-dozen devices connected to it. At the office, though, business-class routers allow you to take advantage of stronger Internet connections and process more at once, meaning that you can do more, and do it faster, with the right equipment.”

The performance aspect is pretty straightforward, but what many companies don’t realize is that business-class routers come with significant security advantages. In most cases, you’re paying a premium for better antivirus integration and data encryption. It’s essentially another line of defense against attacks, which are becoming all-too common.

Most consumer-grade routers have a limited number of channels, which frequently results in interference when lots of users are operating on the network. Business-grade routers go above and beyond offering wireless guest features and actually create a number of separate LANs or VLANs – customized networks that serve distinct purposes.

“You can create a VLAN for management where sensitive company details need to be shared, a VLAN for the regular employees for sharing files and a VLAN for the guests to provide limited Internet access,” tech expert Steven Scheck explains. “Then, you can assign the Ethernet ports of the router to desired VLAN, broadcasting separate SSID for each VLAN.”

Clearly, the security aspect is what makes business-class routers so important. While a very small business may be able to get by just fine with the performance of a consumer-grade router, the security deficiencies will come back to hurt you.

In the past, the biggest knock against business-class routers was that they cost too much. The premium used to be so high that the boosts in performance and security couldn’t justify the added cost. But times have changed and routers have become pretty cost effective (especially when viewed with superior performance in mind). There are even a number of vendors, like BrightStar Systems, that sell used routers and hardware at discounted rates. If you don’t need the latest, greatest router, you can get a used business-class option at a fraction of the cost.

Say No to DIY

There are times to save money and times to spend money. When it comes to a piece of software or a new tech trend, it might make sense to save money and get your feet wet. But when you’re talking about something as critical as a router, there’s no room for experimentation at the expense of saving a few bucks.

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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/68" rel="author">Larry Alton</a>
Larry is an independent business consultant specializing in tech, social media trends, business, and entrepreneurship. Follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn.




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