Businesses in Birmingham have swollen the order books of telecoms provider ntl:Telewest Business as they seek to modernise their communications services in a toughening economic climate, it has emerged.
The company, part of Virgin Media, says it has seen a 40 per cent increase in orders for so-called next generation services that offer higher capacity voice and data links compared to the same time last year.
These services include IP Multimedia, which includes online videoconferencing, and IPVPNs (Internet Protocol Virtual Private Networks), which allow large amounts of data to be shared quickly and securely, enabling home, flexible and mobile working.
Ntl:Telewest Business claims it has experienced unprecedented demand for these services from customers, particularly in the past six months, and believes that firms are working to optimise their communications systems now through moderate investments to upgrade their capabilities.
Many are choosing to do so now rather than risk the lack of competitiveness when retaining more costly and less flexible older voice and data services, according to the company.
“The tougher economic outlook is forcing telecoms companies to be more responsive to the needs of local firms,” said Paul Lawrence, head of business markets for ntl:Telewest Business in Birmingham.
“We’re seeing customers making their money go further by investing in a single network and eliminating the costs and associated challenges of running separate voice and data networks.
“But it is not just a cost cutting exercise. The majority of customers are getting the infrastructure in place so that they can utilise the next generation applications that require faster and higher bandwidth to run, and in the majority of cases the intention is to come through the trading impact of the credit crunch with all guns blazing.”
Ntl:Telewest Business claims to have the most advanced of the two national networks which has already been upgraded with next generation network technology to deliver new levels of sophistication and speed.