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Fibre connections make telecommuting a reality

Fibre-optic connections at 100Mbit/s are commonplace in Japan

Swapping a business suit for pyjamas is likely to become a lot more common as internet connection speeds improve and properly productive telecommuting takes off.

One of Japan's largest telecoms firms, NTT East, has invested in fibre-optic networking to such an extent that it is now able to offer its entire staff of 50,000 the option of working from home.

Thin clients

The company will give its workers thin-client laptops without hard drives to minimise the chance of data leaks (nothing can be stored on them) and conduct the majority of its business online.

That's possible because its 100Mbit/s fibre network to employees' homes is configured to act as a walled garden with gateways that prevent outside access.

Work the focus?

NTT hasn't released the technical details of how this differs from normal domestic FTTH connections, but it has verified its effectiveness in trials running since May this year.

Now, without the opportunity to meet up in pubs to bitch about colleagues' salaries and plan obsequious ways to further their own careers, one has to wonder if staff will finally get on with working for the greater good.