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Every provider interviewed by Ovum is experiencing growing demand in volume and bandwidth for business internet services.
Providers see this in existing customers asking for more bandwidth and in new customers starting with higher bandwidth or burstable service requests. Given its high availability, lower cost, and improving service delivery, business internet has been the go-to WAN service to fill this demand. Historically, large enterprise customers added internet bandwidth at all major sites to supplement their private networks and relieve the pressure on more expensive MPLS networks. Now customers of all sizes use business internet to meet growing bandwidth demand cost effectively.
CenturyLink also is investing in local fiber in the US to provide better access. Like many larger providers, CenturyLink has improved its service with continuing work on diversity, better management of its peer connections, and tighter SLAs. These SLAs are available across CenturyLink's major regions (e.g., the US and Europe). Some of CenturyLink's customers leverage its converged core backbone as well.
Bell Canada (Bell) likewise is making a major investment in fiber deployment and increasing its coverage nationally. Bell is working on SLA improvements that approach its private network SLAs. Bell's development of its Virtual Network Services platform will let customers mix multiple services on one common platform with a self-service portal for customer visibility, control, and bandwidth management. Bell Canada is promoting its wireless services as a standard backup option to its internet services.
Over the past few years there have been new players and new efforts to create conditioned internet with improved performance. One of the first demonstrations was sponsored by an American content delivery network and cloud service provider, which created new techniques that improved the delivery of large media files including video streaming over internet services.
Internet services will continue to grow with some price compression along the way in competitive markets. Most carriers are reporting modest volume growth and some small revenue growth. This tracks with Ovum's Enterprise Broadband forecast, which predicts volume growth at 2.48% CAGR and revenue growth at 3.64% for the next five years in North America. Enterprises of all sizes will continue to deploy more and more internet services as business internet takes a primary enterprise WAN role.
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