Wednesday, 30 April 2014

4G | How can it benefit your business?

There are many benefits of 4G for personal use, but how often do you hear about the benefits for businesses?

4G was first launched in October 2012 by EE who now have around 28 million customers. With the increasing number of businesses adopting mobile working policies, there has been a much bigger focus on connectivity on the move. In order to increase productivity and efficiency of employees, your business needs 4G which is faster than 3G, making it a lot easier to work when away from the office. That could mean on a train journey, at the airport, when visiting a client or customer or any other time or place when WiFi isn’t readily available.

You may be thinking 3G can do this for me too. Of course, 3G can offer the capabilities of receiving emails or social networking. But in order to send large files quickly or to use new business applications such as video calling, a much faster connection is needed.

These tools, as well as increasing productivity, can cut costs for a company, reducing the need for employees to travel, as well as cutting necessary office space as more people work from home.

But there’s more to 4G than just speed. For example, EE has partnered with iZettle to provide small businesses with 4G powered mobile payment terminals. A card reader has been developed which can be plugged straight into a 4G smartphone or tablet and used to accept payments, so if you don’t have a static place of business it’s a simple, secure solution for taking payments wherever you happen to be.

EE is also working with supermarkets and high street stores to modernise their businesses with the help of 4G. Through an initiative called ‘Connected Retail’ the network is helping businesses improve their productivity and their ability to communicate with customers by outfitting managers with 4G equipped tablets, so they can do admin work from the shop floor and by developing apps which customers can use while they shop, giving the store key information about their buying habits.

Another way in which EE is thinking outside the box with its approach to 4G for business is by equipping RAC patrol vehicles with 4G equipped devices which track their speed, location, breaking distance, fuel consumption and more. Among other things, this allows the drivers to become more aware of bad habits and work on changing them, reducing petrol consumption and saving money in the process.

EE is also focussed on security. It recently launched a new Super Secure 4GEE portfolio which allows businesses to securely manage access to company data and business applications.

While EE is certainly leading the way when it comes to 4G for business it’s not the only network that offers business services. Vodafone has also got some 4G business plans. There are Red Sharer plans, for example, which allow users to share a pool of data between them, just like EE offers.

Vodafone has also launched a service called ‘Sure Signal Premium,’ which is a device that can easily be installed into a work place and then gives users consistent and reliable access to Vodafone’s 4G network. It’s easy to set up and is designed to ensure there’s a high speed internet connection everywhere in a building, even areas where a Wi-Fi signal might be flaky, so productivity can be at a maximum at all times.

Then there’s O2, which is perhaps particularly appealing to small businesses, with things like a free subscription to Evernote Premium when you register, which makes it easier to work and take notes while keeping all your data synced across devices.

Of course, you have to think about the network coverage also. You can check the network coverage for each network here: EE, O2, Vodafone.

So, if you’re a business user and haven’t already got on board with 4G there’s never been a better time and if you have a mobile work force then it’s a move that’s essential.

Contact Top Comms today to find out the best 4G deals! 
01902 753146

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