O2 Business Smart Network:The digital networking solution for medium-sized businesses
- Especially for medium-sized businesses: O2 Business offers an efficient and secure SD-WAN networking product with Smart Network
- As a control center, O2 Business Smart Network bundles the performance of all communications networks - whether fixed network with DSL, optic fiber, cable or mobile communications with LTE and 5G.
- O2 Business Smart Network enables simple analysis, fast data management and prioritization of individual services
O2 Business has developed a new digital networking solution for SMEs that enables companies to easily network their company locations and securely set up existing infrastructures for the digital age. The O2 Business Smart Network product is based on SD-WAN (Software Defined Wide Area Network) technology. Here, the management of the network is handled by specialized software that, for example, combines the physical network connections used in a company network into a single cloud-based network. By bundling all communication technologies in one network, the company's IT becomes more powerful and stable while remaining flexible. In addition, new digital services, e.g., to support the company's own business model, can be integrated and used much more cost-effectively. O2 Business Smart Network bundles the existing Internet connections and, through central control, optimizes data traffic and the utilization of the individual connections. For example, SD-WAN uses real-time monitoring to detect whether certain network connections are impaired, overloaded or even down and transmit the data packets via alternative "routes" through the company network. In addition, time-critical and application-critical data can be specifically prioritized in the network so that data traffic takes its route via a faster or more stable connection than less time-critical transmissions.
O2 Business Smart Network offers numerous advantages for companies: Straightforward management of all connections, prioritization of data traffic, better protection against outages, optimum IT security, greater flexibility in network operations, and cost reductions compared with traditional network solutions. According to a recent study by market research company Capgemini, digitization is the number one priority for companies in Germany in 2021.1) SD-WAN enables companies to adapt and modernize their existing network infrastructure more flexibly, more quickly, and more easily, thus placing the digitization of the company on an optimal foundation. A study by network equipment supplier Cisco shows that SD-WAN solutions reduce downtime by an impressive 95 percent compared to conventional fixed network infrastructures - and new services such as VPNs or firewalls can be integrated almost 60 percent faster.2) The significant reduction of both IT downtime costs and related administration costs is a business success factor for companies. With O2 Business Smart Network, medium-sized companies are now able to make their company network secure, stable and future-proof at an excellent price-performance ratio.
How SMEs benefit from O2 Business Smart Network
- Improve network performance and stability: Costly downtime is reduced through intelligent control of connections, resulting in increased resilience.
- Improve application performance: Using real-time analysis, SD-WAN routes traffic over the best available route for the software application in question.
- Simple, central management: Thanks to a clear web portal, central and location-independent management of the entire company network is possible in a single platform.
- Cost reductions for IT support: Simplified and centralized SD-WAN control reduces the burden on IT managers of the company's own network, so that time-consuming and cost-intensive IT support usually leads to cost reductions for IT staff and data centers.
- Advantages for network security: Thanks to SD-WAN, security-relevant configuration changes to software or network components are implemented at all networked sites in near real time - without the need for an on-site visit by an IT specialist. The cloud-based central controller and other elements such as the central firewall are located in the European Union and therefore comply with the high European data protection regulations.
- Flexible scalability and future-proofing: Thanks to the flexibility of O2 Business Smart Network, the network technology can be adapted quickly and flexibly with regard to future changes, such as new locations, additional data connections or new digital applications. The flexibility gained through SD-WAN contributes to future-proofing, because necessary scaling or changes and modernization of business processes and models are supported by O2 Business Smart Network.
- Low barriers to entry: The integration of O2 Business Smart Network into a company's existing IT landscape is possible without major disruptions to ongoing operations. Commissioning is uncomplicated and often possible without greater IT expertise at the local sites, as the prefabricated and preconfigured components integrate automatically into the corporate network.
O2 Business Smart Network at a glance
O2 Business Smart Network can be configured according to a company's specific requirements profile: Even in the basic Smart Access version, the solution with its standard functionalities brings significant benefits for the majority of SMEs. With this variant, companies can combine up to two fixed network connections and mobile LTE access. The company keeps an eye on the status of its network at all times via the self-care monitoring portal and is also actively notified in the event of faults. Smart Access is available from 55 euros (net) per month.3) The Smart WAN option extends the functionality of Smart Access. It enables applications to be prioritized. For example, if it is important to a company that MS teams or video conferencing or enterprise resource planning systems always work, then this can be specified separately. In addition, the company's sites are networked via an encrypted data connection. This option can be added for an additional 10 euros (net) per month.3)
Consequences of a network failure - A practical example
IT problems and deficiencies in the digital working environment can cost companies millions of euros in lost working time.4) A study conducted in 2020 shows that employees in Germany lose an average of around 25 minutes each time they experience IT-related problems. The study also makes it clear that IT decision-makers - including in Germany - assume that employees are confronted with around two IT problems per week and thus lose around 50 hours of time per year. However, since only a good half of IT problems are reported, the real figures are probably almost twice as high - it's about 100 hours, or the equivalent of over two weeks per year, per employee. Using the example of a fictitious medium-sized offset printing company, we trace an IT network failure and its consequences. Large volumes of data are transferred in the print shop, which places a heavy load on the network at times. Due to Corona, most of the administrative and graphics staff work in their home offices and overload the already busy company network with video conferences and VPN use. After starting their work at 0800 hours with the daily video conference, the employees realize after a good 10 minutes that not only can they no longer conduct video conferences, but they also cannot access the printing and graphics software, the merchandise management and CRM systems, and e-mail also does not work. Your IT service provider will be notified by telephone by one of the affected employees after 15 minutes. The IT service provider will now start to reorganize his planned processes for the day and deal directly with the print shop's IT problem. After just two hours, he has solved the problem and thus reacted very quickly and flexibly. Now, however, the network error is not happening for the first time, but over a period of the last six months with a regularity of approximately every two weeks. Due to the described malfunction, 25 employees were unable to work until the fault was rectified at 1030h - which corresponds to a work loss of 150 minutes per employee. If we only add up the internal personnel costs of the downtime, this one loss adds up to a total of 2,500 euros for an hourly wage of 40 euros per employee. Over a period of six months (approx. every 2 weeks), this amounts to a loss of 30,000 euros. However, this calculation only includes the costs of employees who are directly affected by the IT network disruption. It does not take into account the employees in the print shop itself who work on the machines and the colleagues in logistics who also cannot take action before the company's CRM system is up and running again. With this scenario in mind, the owner of the print shop wakes up from his dream one morning and remembers with great relief the decision he made a few weeks ago to secure his future. At that time, a good two weeks ago, he set the course to ensure that such scenarios would not occur. After numerous consultations and researches, he virtually purchased a backup network for his company IT network, with which he can sleep peacefully and, in case of doubt, manage and monitor his entire company network on his own from his laptop at home - O2 Business Smart Network. The implementation of the O2 Business system was possible without any major disruption to ongoing operations. He also added an LTE mobile connection to the two existing fixed network DSL services. O2 Smart Network now allows him to easily manage his corporate IT network himself, and provides the necessary flexibility for future expansion should new digital applications need to be integrated. And with the ability to prioritize traffic and encrypt data, his and his customers' data is secure during transmission.
YouTube video (in German): SD-WAN networking solution from Telefónica Germany
|1)||Capgemini, IT Trends Study, December 2020 (https://www.capgemini.com/de-de/news/it-trends-study-2021-it-budgets-rise-despite-pandemic)|
|2)||IDC: Business Value of Cisco's SD-WAN Solutions, March 2019 (https://transform.cisco.com/seller/idcreport_en?xs=99167)|
|3)||All prices plus VAT for a contract term of 36 months|
|4)||Nexthink "The Experience 2020 Report"|