The difference between the £15 per month dial-up account and the £400-odd of a bridged ISDN connection is vast, but so are the benefits, because the nearly instant call negotiation and setup connects the user at the 64k enjoyed by a leased line connectection.
And the clue to other differences is in the word "routed" - the ISDN connection can connect an entire LAN through a router so that all the users on that LAN have transparent Internet access.
But the phone bills still arrive. Charging by the second will certainly help, but take it from one who has the bills to prove it, the Internet at ISDN convenience is addictive. Not just for trivia trawls, but for real business benefits, and top of that list remains email and file transfers.
With a leased line comes a fatalistic approach to the of "all you can eat for a grand a month". You are then part of the Internet. You can play with web servers of your own.
Few individuals can afford to have the Internet on a leased line to their home, and since a lot of surfing and browsing takes place at home, this is frustrating. But if you have a leased line at work, then itís relatively simple to add an ISDN connection to your home. ISDN costs are set to tumble (if Germans pays £50 connection, then surely we will sooner or later).
And surfing on local calls that takes place at weekends or evenings
is at a very reasonable call rate.
Key staff can take advantage of the idea of the Internet at 64k in their homes for their own amusement and the benefit of their kids. Plus, of course, once you have the staff on what amounts to an extension of the office network at home, then you might just find those tricky tasks getting finished from the home office.
Maybe that email backlog gets sorted during a quiet time on a Sunday evening. Those late night email exchanges with your US business partners can be dealt with same day.
Iím not suggesting that this a sneaky way to enslave the workforce, but a way to bring the future a little closer, because every survey suggests that your business will be connected to the Internet by a fixed line connection within the next few years. You could gain a considerable advantage by making an early start...
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