Author - Eric Witheridge
Traditional Telephone Switchboard (PBX) Sales Slide Further
We've known that PBX sales worldwide have been falling for some time and a recent set of figures from analyst firm *MZA have confirmed this.
*Far from any sort of recovery PBX extensions and licences have fallen by 9% year on year. There has been an 11% decline in the enterprise market. (Solutions with greater than 100 extensions/licences).
This could of course be a natural shift driven by a global decline associated with the recession however, there is also a massive increase in the amount of Internet based telephony.
So what does this mean for anyone making the decision to repair/replace a telephone switchboard?
Simply this, question your telephone provider about the longevity of their solution? Should you really be investing in expensive hardware which may become redundant? Should you really tie yourself to a multi year contract?
On premises equipment offering internet telephony is not the way to go unless you have massively quick broadband dedicated to telephony only. Also, this tends to be expensive and could lock you into the sort of handsets that are delivered with the system.
Our advice is to try a solution to make sure it fits the business. We're happy to provide a free trial of our systems to help you make this decision.
The wonderful thing is that we will not tie you into a lengthy contract and the handsets may be used with most IP or hosted telephone systems.
* Figures courtesy of Channel Telecom magazine http://commsbusiness.co.uk/
High Roaming Charges
How many people turn off their mobile devices when travelling abroad to save on the high roaming charges? I know of someone who actually ended up with a bill for £900 after using his iPhone whilst abroad and continuing to download the same data etc that he downloaded at home – his comment was “never again”. Once, on a trip to the USA, I purchased a US SIM card to use to call the UK as it was cheaper than using my UK one.
The European Commission carried out a survey of 28,000 people from across the European Union and along with other data showed that 47% of the people surveyed refused to use their mobile devices whilst travelling abroad. It was discovered that up to 37% of British residents turn off their mobile devices when outside of the UK.
As a result Neelie Knoes, European Commission Vice President stated “it shows we have to finish the job and eliminate roaming charges”. As a result these high charges end up with no winners and the mobile companies losing out on revenue and businesses losing out on business and profits. More particularly these charges are having a damaging effect on UK businesses that operate outside of the UK and whose personnel frequently travel abroad.
Since February 2013 the EU has been in discussions with the mobile network providers to force them to cut roaming charges with the EU.
There may be some light at the end of this tunnel as the EU has announced that it is hoped that roaming charges will be reduced or dropped by October of this year.
5G – The Next Generation
How would you like to be able to download a full HD movie instantly to you mobile device? According to scientists in South Korea experimenting with 5G this could become a possibility because they are saying that 5G is 1000 times faster than 4G.
Whilst most UK users are in awe of what can be delivered by 4G it is interesting to know that development is being done on the next generation. The South Korean Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology (MEST) development is being carried out on a 5G network. £900m is being invested into the project with a projected launch in 2020.
Last year Samsung carried out 5G tests and these have shown that it is possible to achieve 1Gbps mobile signal.
The intention is to be able to have Ultra-HD streaming and hologram transmission.
Inbound 4G Roaming – EE
In a statement EE’s Chief Executive, Olaf Swantee, said that when tourists travel abroad they are “increasingly looking for fast and reliable mobile experiences. Technology is not just shaping how people book and research holidays but what they look for when they are choosing a country to visit”.
So as from 17 December 2013 US visitors to the UK will be able to utilise EE’s (Everything Everywhere) superfast 4G network. The company is the first company in the UK to offer this facility. This is due to an agreement with the US network company AT&T.
The intention is to extend this to visitors from other countries during this year by launching further partnerships during the year.
EE was the first company to launch 4G in the UK and so far has managed to make this available to 60% of the population with 160 cities and towns being covered by Christmas last year. A report of 9 December 2013 published by 4GEE Mobile Living Index showed that there was more than 1.2 million subscribers.
Common Mobile Phone Charger a Possibility
How many people have a different charger for every mobile phone either at home or at work? Also when we buy a new phone how often do we have to buy a new charger?
I personally find this very frustrating and when I buy a new mobile phone I have to buy a new charger and what can I do with the old one despite the fact that it still works? My old chargers normally end up at the local recycling centre.
I am sure that many of us suffer the same frustrations. Now there may be an end to all of this thanks to the EU. The EU is proposing to make mobile phone manufacturers make interchangeable chargers.
For its current range of iPhones, iPods and iPads Apple uses its own proprietary connector called “Lightning” but most other smart phones do have interchangeable micro USB chargers.
A provisional deal has been structured by MEPs and the Lithuanian Presidency of the Council of Ministers to make universal chargers a reality. The justification for this is that it will cut the costs for consumers and prevent unnecessary wastage.
Hopefully this will be one good thing that will come from the EU.
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