Committed Information Rate (CIR)


So you are thinking of Investing in a cloud-based phone system, have you done all your research? Entrusting your businesses critical communications to the cloud can be a scary thought, sharing your voice communication with all the other traffic on the internet may not be something that appeals to you. Your broadband provider may have told you-you can have 100Mbits per second over an Ultra Fast Broadband Circuit (UFB), surely that will be enough. Think again! The worlds of voice and data, although they happy co-exist, they work very differently. Computer networks are designed to allow standard packets of data to be re-sent if they do not reach their intended destination, sometimes resulting in small delays when receiving data. This is typically not an issue as it doesn’t make much difference if it takes an extra half second for an email to arrive. For voice it is very different, ever tried holding a conversation when half of what is said isn't received on-time? For this reason when internet networks transport voice they don't use the same re-try method as standard data. Voice data is simply sent and either received at the destination or not. If the network is congested or slow phone calls become jittery and unreliable.

Typical Network Congestion

The following image depicts what happens when an internet connection point becomes contested. In today's connected world there are many congestion points on a broadband network, whether that be the connection to your office, the local exchange, your service providers network, or the international internet connection point, available bandwidth is shared with all the other local users. If there is more traffic than available bandwidth can process, voice and or data packets will be delayed or lost. For standard data the solution is straightforward, if data is delayed or lost the information is resent after its discovered missing at the destination. Your video may buffer, or your email may be delayed by half a second, but it will arrive. For voice it won’t do, it will sound broken and jittery or worse the call will be dropped completely.

Orca without CIR

151007 CIR diagramme Orca2

Our Approach

At Orca, we have a solution to this issue, the Committed Information Rate (CIR). Designed specifically to solve the loss of voice traffic over the internet the CIR is a standards-based solution which tags & prioritises voice traffic over the connection to ensure it reaches it’s destination in order and on time. Look at it as a dedicated bandwidth for all voice traffic over the internet ensuring it gets from point A to point B. We are one of the only service providers in New Zealand to support this standard across the whole network from your phone, across your local network, your internet connection, the service provider network and the Cloud Phone system. We achieve this by providing all of these components for our customers. Most Cloud phone system companies do not priortise the voice data across connection points to the Cloud Phone System or worse; use generic internet connections from any other internet service provider. This inevitably results in bad phone call quality caused by congestion points across the local connection or internet. For this reason Orca provides all aspects of a voice solution including internet connections that automatically prioritise voice data to ensure all phone calls will be reliable ay all times. Here in New Zealand the lines companies that own the Ultra Fast Broadband (UFB) networks are required to support CIR across their netowrks to ensure connections are capable of minimum speeds as required by government regulation. But their is a catch; Internet Service Providers must use expensive specialist equipment to support the CIR across their own networks. For this reason most NZ service providers choose not to support the C.I.R. All Orca UFB connections fully support the use of the CIR. Click here to find out more.

Managed WANs

At Orca, we also offer the capability to link multiple office locations together without the need for VPN technology. This Private Network allows full layer 2 interaction, a single Internet gateway/firewall is provided within the Orca Cloud for all sites, where all internet traffic is managed, secured and tracked allowing office locations to share a single data plan. Inter-office data traffic no longer needs to traverse the open Internet allowing free interoffice data at significantly faster speeds.


For more information on this and how our Managed WAN can work for you and your business check out our Manged WAN page or call us for more information: