cloud technology

Telecommunications Triumphs

Solid telecom backbones – coupled with cloud computing and mobile devices – facilitate a new wave of business solutions. 

New Jersey has long been a telecommunications epicenter, with world-renowned prowess in both specific product innovation and broader telecom infrastructure. Today, Garden State businesses can avail themselves of increasingly ubiquitous high-speed wireless networks and, separately, new telecom products/services which can likewise enhance their companies’ competitiveness.


The growth of “4G” wireless networks has been widely reported, and companies such as Bedminster-based AT&T continuously strive to geographically boost connectivity. Last year, AT&T brought more than 77 new 4G LTE markets to New Jersey, including Atlantic City, the Jersey Shore and numerous areas in Cumberland County. Also, its Distributed Antennae Systems (DAS) have been installed in larger locations such as stadiums and office complexes, permitting heavy use by large numbers of persons without a decrease in connectivity speeds.

In this same vein, over the last five years, a different company – Verizon – has nationally invested more than $4 billion in its wireline infrastructure, including investments in fiber optic, copper and other technologies. In the wireless sphere, it offers the largest 4G LTE network in United States.

Meanwhile, Lightpath, which offers Ethernet-based communication solutions for New York metropolitan area businesses, recently announced that its 100 percent fiber network “now connects more than 7,000 locations and spans more than 5,800 fiber route miles.”

It says its “latest additions – almost half of which include locations in New Jersey – represent ongoing efforts by Lightpath to bring fast, high-quality and reliable telecommunications services to more mid-market organizations. In the past year, more than 1,000 new locations have been brought onto the company’s network.”

More Demand

The need for robust telecommunications infrastructure is at an all-time high, driven not only by obvious increases in consumers’ and businesses’ use of mobile devices, but also by the growing use of cloud-based services, videoconferencing and voice-over-Internet-protocol (VoIP).

In a poll conducted by Comcast Business in late 2012, Comcast revealed that, “84 percent of respondents said they were experiencing increasing bandwidth needs due to factors like their use of the cloud, Wi-Fi and mobile devices. This trend is also expected to grow as companies continue to aggregate – and unlock value from – their customer data, with everything from order histories to buying preferences to online shopping patterns. In fact, more than half of respondents in another Comcast Business survey said they expected the quantity of data they collected to grow at least 50 percent over the next two years.”

Overall, “the cloud” is essentially comprised of data centers that store information for client companies, freeing them from the need to purchase, maintain and secure computer servers at their own locations.

Lou Delery, senior vice president for enterprise business marketing at AT&T, says, “The cloud is just now starting to take hold, and many enterprise and small business customers are finding that the things that they thought they had to do before – whether that was payroll, [maintaining] their systems and files, how they did some of the customer relationship management – can now be housed very effectively in the cloud. The obvious benefit to them is they can use those [saved] dollars to invest in their own business and do what they are really passionate about.”

Also on this topic, Verizon spokesman Lee Gierczynski, says, “[Verizon] just launched the Secure Cloud Interconnect Service. That allows businesses to use Verizon’s private IP service to connect to multiple cloud services; it helps remove some barriers for business customers trying to use cloud services. And many organizations today use multiple clouds to meet their business needs.”

Comcast tells New Jersey Business magazine, “As the number of choices in cloud computing applications explodes, Comcast Business recently launched Upware to address the three main challenges that businesses face when it comes to the cloud: Selecting the right service, learning how to actually manage it, and making sure that any necessary support is provided both quickly and effectively.

“Upware simplifies the management of cloud services by offering each employee a single login for all of his or her applications. Administrators manage all accounts and are able to change permissions as needed through the Upware dashboard, which provides a single, comprehensive view of all services and which users are assigned to each. Upware also offers a one-call solution for customer support for any related services.”

Comcast Business Regional Vice President Kevin Conmy, says, “We know small business owners and we know what tools they need to grow their businesses. Upware simplifies what can be a complex world of choices when evaluating cloud-based services.”


Also on the rise is VoIP, which can offer a compelling alternative to the more traditional means for providing phone services. Paul Boyer, principal, Mount Laurel-based Ancero, LLC, explains, “Today, the phone system goes away. We usually see companies come to us that had been overpaying [for phone services], or they are moving locations, their voicemail no longer works, or their [traditional phone] system is just end-of-life; it is time for a new phone system.”

He adds, “[The phone system] now can be cloud-based. There’s nothing at the customer’s location except their voice-over-IP phones; the phone system simply resides in the cloud.”

Solving Problems

Cost savings is merely one factor in a broader technology equation which attempts to improve overall business performance within highly-competitive markets. It’s imbedded in the essence of human nature to ask the questions, “How can we do this better? How does something work – and why?”

AT&T’s Delery, says, “There are a number of [telecom] products that are introduced every single day, and are fully cutting edge. But, from our perspective – and what really works well – is trying to help customers understand how various products work together, to help them solve their business problems.”

The first area Delery addresses is location-based services, which allow companies to track both physical assets and/or employees for increased efficiencies. A second area of focus is what Delery terms “work collaboration.”

He explains, “This is being able to access your information wherever you are, whenever you want to do that. And I’ll give an example of that: I travel sometimes from New Jersey to Dallas, and my office in New Jersey is – honestly – a lot nicer than the ‘visiting office’ I have in Dallas. I use a product that we call Mobile Workplace. It is a cloud-based solution that allows me to access all of my files, and to operate as though I am sitting here in my office in New Jersey, while I am in my small office in Dallas. This allows me to transact business in Dallas in exactly the same way. In doing that, I am able to share files and information, and I don’t miss a beat no matter where I am. That’s an example of how collaboration is an area that has been getting a lot of attention.”

Yet another topic Delery addresses is how business processes are being transformed via hardware and software technology, including merchant services solutions that permit smartphones to act as credit card terminals, for example. Delery exclaims, “That is just huge, from the standpoint that small business owners care about cash flow as being the most important thing.”


What might the future hold for telecommunications and associated business solutions? Again, big data analytics and the leverage it promises to unlock for businesses is clearly rising, according to published reports. And mobile devices – with increasing capabilities – will likely continue to be smaller, but, at the same time, more potent and better able to access the power of “the cloud.” By all accounts, New Jersey is poised to remain a critical player in all these realms, including the underlying infrastructure backbones that enable telecommunications in its numerous iterations.

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