As Internet Usage Rises, so Does Reliability
Contrary to the old days, technology has gotten so solid that outages are noteworthy because they happen so infrequently.
Internet usage has risen dramatically, but so has reliability. According to this Minot Daily News story, this is due largely to the strides technology makes every year to not only increase speed, but decrease downtime during which Internet service is not functioning. Quoted in the story is Tom Simmons, senior vice president of public policy for Midcontinent Communications, who said he can't even remember the last time his company had a large Internet outage.
"'The requirements for reliability of Internet connectivity, and not only just connectivity, but full broadband connectivity is today considered a vital service when it might have been, in fact, considered a luxury and just an add-on when the service was launched back in 1995,' Simmons said. 'So when we have an outage we treat that as a severity one event. In other words, we put it in the same category as a telephone outage. We consider it a very vital service.'
"So how have Internet service providers like Midcontinent Communications managed to boost their uptime when use is only getting higher? The key is redundancy. If one piece of equipment is needed to run a certain part of the service, then two or three other pieces of equipment are there to back it up."