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Easynet Connect warn small business over World Cup distruption
Friday 04 June 2010 15:06:11 by John Hunt

Easynet Connect, a small business ISP, are advising small businesses to be aware of disruption that could be caused by the World Cup to their Internet connections. Small businesses are likely to be hardest hit as they generally have lower speed connections which may get saturated if a couple of people in the office decide to watch the World Cup online via BBC iPlayer or ITV Player. If you have a broadband connection designed for the home, this is usually more heavily contended and you may find that other people in your local area or customers of the same broadband provider watching online could cause broadband slowdowns.

"Traditionally, small businesses face a dilemma when deciding whether to allow employees to follow major sporting events during office hours. Whether it is through their PCs, phones or even pocket radios it is likely that fans will find a means of following the football regardless. This year however, small businesses need to consider the technical issue of bandwidth provision with large numbers of fans, especially those who are part of 'generation Y' who instinctively look to the internet to follow live events, using their work internet connections to follow the tournament."

"We'd urge businesses to act now to avoid any reduction in connectivity or productivity. Smaller companies should audit their ongoing and future bandwidth requirements and ensure that their connection can support their most critical applications as well as managing spikes in demand. For example, one person viewing full HD streaming via the BBC's iPlayer requires 1.5Mbps, so to have five people using this kind of service without impacting upon other services would require a minimum connection of at least 8Mbps without considering the bandwidth required by apps such as VoIP or email."

Chris Stening, (Managing Director) Easynet Connect

Easynet Connect are advising that businesses should take some steps before the World Cup begins to ensure that they will be able to cope. This includes planning ahead and talking to your ISP to see how much bandwidth your business requires, generally and at peak times. With this information it should be possible to see if you need to upgrade your broadband package or transfer to a different ISP who can better meet your requirements. There could be other technologies which may work better for you over DSL such as using a leased line or MPLS to provide a service that will offer a Service Level Agreement (SLA) and can use technology to prioritise certain types of traffic such as Voice over IP.

Other options suggested include buying radios or TVs for the office so employees can watch the game without it causing problems for your Internet connection. Flexitime could also help out by giving employees the ability to watch games and make up the work time later in the day or week, although this might not be possible for all kinds of jobs!


Posted by herdwick over 6 years ago
other options include telling your employees to do their job rather than watching the TV
Posted by John_Gray over 6 years ago
"World Cup distruption"

Your headline has already suffered from distruption!
Posted by krazykizza over 6 years ago
That statement is untrue. It's 3.5mbps for "full HD" on the iPlayer, but bursts in buffering stages ... so the connection could see a lot higher spikes at certain moments in time. A lot higher than 8mbps.
Posted by otester over 6 years ago
1080p usually streams at ~9-12Mbps.
720p usually <5Mbps.

Not that many of us can even get 720p.

Stuck with 2Mb here, 3Mb on good days :/
...even with DMT Tool, damn BT and their fault tolerance!
Posted by mcowley01 over 6 years ago
In my day going to work meant going to work. Dock their pay!!
Posted by chrysalis over 6 years ago
on VM 20mbit, I tend to see iplayer buffer to about 12mbit/sec and then do nothing for about 5-10 seconds or so and then another 12mbit burst, on ukonline where my line cant even do 12mbit, it bursts to about 2mbit and the nothing for a second and then 2mbit the next on and off, so different buffering algorithm, but both work.
Posted by neilsurfin over 6 years ago
Surely work computers are for working with, The beauty of Iplayer is it will be available to watch after work with friends and lager or is that allowed in offices nowadays too!
Posted by mishminx over 6 years ago
A proactive approach produces a better chance of laying ground rules and managing the situation. If you pretend the event isn't happening or shouldn't impact office time then you'll be in for something of a surprise. As people will still watch, skive off, listen to radio and so on.

It is largely Easynet sales patter but even so, small businesses might not have the technical experience to block online activity.
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