Will 2016 Be Remembered as the Year of IPv6?

In 1983, when the Internet was still in its infancy and still referred to as ARPANET, IPv4 was deployed for the purpose of routing traffic. The original standard was designed to assign unique IP addresses for 4.3 billion possible devices to ensure that data flowed securely to the appropriate destination. That seemed like an inexhaustible supply of addresses at the time, but, in subsequent years, the number of devices connecting to the Internet has exploded.

The issue of running out of IP addresses came to a head in 2015 when the folks at Regional Internet Registry (RIR) for North America determined that their pool of available IP addresses was becoming exhausted. This was largely due to the popularity of connected “things.” According to a recent report from Gartner, 6.4 billion connected devices will be in use this year—a 30 percent increase from 2015.

From smartphones to smart refrigerators, the Internet of Things is disrupting the nature of connectivity and will continue to do so. Indeed, Gartner predicts that, by 2020, the number of connected devices will reach 20.8 billion.

The 2015 conclusions from the RIR may come to be known as the eulogy for IPv4, meaning that 2016 may come to be remembered as the year of IPv6. (more…)

What’s Sapping Your Bandwidth?

Forward-thinking business leaders are introducing all sorts of technology solutions to increase worker productivity these days. Just think about your offices: How many employees are using desktops? Mobile devices? How much of your vital data is stored on your network? When it comes to staying in communication, do you pick up the phone or do you send an email, text or Skype request? There is no question that your company’s success depends upon the tech that employees use every day to get their jobs done.

So what happens when your Internet speed starts to slow down? Or the quality of your video conferencing no longer facilitates group discussion? What if you have a time-sensitive document to send to a client and your network stalls?

Just as your employees depend on these tools to grow your company, all that technology relies on bandwidth. So if you’re experiencing problems with your network performance, it’s time for you to ask the question: What’s sapping my bandwidth? (more…)

All a Farmer Needs: Sun, Soil, Water … and Lightning-Fast Connectivity

Since the dawn of civilization, the recipe for farming success was fairly simple: sun, soil and water. But, today, things are a little more complicated. Partly due to a more competitive globalized economy, prices for crops and livestock have plunged, leading to a 15-year low in net income for farmers, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Yet with a global population of 7.5 billion, demand for food has never been higher.

Given the demand, the opportunity to boost revenue can practically be tasted. Bringing it home to roost hinges upon modern technology, specifically, adding lightning-fast connectivity to the mix.

But what, exactly, does high-speed Internet access have to do with farming? (more…)