Dark Fiber is a popular way to connect sites in an existing Ethernet-based LAN service. Ethernet has essentially replaced DSL for low cost and versatility. It can be utilized by residences and businesses of all sizes. While DSL lines have always been shared, Dark Fiber transmissions can be shared (repeated) or dedicated through switches, packet technologies, and other protocols.
Dark Fiber lines originally stemmed out of coaxial cables, but technology has allowed Dark Fiber cables to adapt and change to accept more bandwidth than coaxial cables can supply. Now, we find even the largest companies utilizing Dark Fiber technologies to connect to their Wide Area Networks (WANs). Packet technologies are allowing WANs to be comprised entirely of inexpensive, widely installed Dark Fiber cables. Laying and burying thick, expensive new cables is now only a concern for data centers and prominent cloud servers.
Since Dark Fiber cables are not buried they can easily be upgraded to accept the latest packet technologies and even wireless transmissions. The latest cables are twisted pairs of wires that can not only accept higher transmission speeds, but can accept the latest packet technologies like Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS). This means that a business can have dedicated, secure data and voice transmissions though a shared Dark Fiber network, saving even more money. As technologies change, Dark Fiber cables can either accept them, or be replaced by cables that can accept them, at a minimal cost.
Many carriers have stopped offering T1 installations because they can offer the same bandwidth speeds through existing Dark Fiber lines, at a much lower cost. Dark Fiber service providers can pass their savings on to their customers, and growing competition will insure this. Businesses can now have dedicated Dark Fiber LANs, giving them the lowest price for bandwidth, accessibility, and adaptability for years to come.