|Business Mobile Data
If it wasn't for the internet, e-mail would never have happened.
Originally designed for military use in 1967, it has become the fastest growing technology ever seen. From its starting point for public access in 1986, it is now estimated that 1 billion people have ready access to the internet with websites growing at approximately 15million a year.
E-mail and the internet on the move
Why have e-mail on the move?
E-mail is becoming a standard part of business life, just like a phone call. Where fax machines had an impact in the 1980's, e-mail is re-writing the way we communicate in day to day life. Over 50% of the working population have a business associated e-mail address.
Many people are now "remote workers", i.e people who do not work everyday from a desk. Laptops have been used for many years now, and not just by salespeople! Engineers, trainers, management at any type of company, have been using laptops to help keep information flowing while away from an office.
- Global e-mail traffic will top 35billion messages a day by 2008, up from the current figure of 20billion in 2005
- 75% of e-mail traffic carries business related information
- More companies than ever are SOHO or self employed
- It's estimated that by 2008 50% of all b2b mobile traffic will be data
But still many people don't have internet/e-mail on the move. All will have a mobile phone but haven't the ability to get information other than a call while out. This is where mobile data helps. But it can help in other ways too.
- Every person in b2b receives more 'time critical' e-mails daily than phone calls
- On average for every one voicemail received business customers receive 3 emails!
- Use of mobile data solutions delivers tangible cost savings in other areas i.e telephone calls, faxes etc
Why should e-mail on the move be so important?
E-mail has made people lazy, and also sometimes people will ask things by e-mail they would not necessarily ask by phone! We've all had (or will get!) an e-mail that demands information, or a response, by a certain time or date.
Everyone has accepted that having a mobile phone is a necessity. Why would anyone not make sure they can get their e-mails while out, when they have made sure they can have phone calls?
What if it was that important order they have been waiting for?
What if it was a last question from a potential client but they need a fast response or you may lose the order?
What if it was a colleague's request for help?
Also, e-mail on the move can help companies reduce cost. For instance, people will make fewer calls once they can e-mail people, also their colleagues will do the same, and e-mail from the office rather than pick up the phone. This means both the mobile bills will reduce and so will the office phone bills too!! So why pay to fax anymore when you can simply email?
- Help clients see the benefits to have e-mail on the move
- Understand the way they work, and learn what it is you can help change in their business.
- Ask clients how their salespeople get orders, or engineers pick up their job list for the day.Maybe we could help them get orders processed more quickly, or save time on engineers coming to the office just to collect paperwork which could be emailed to them?
- Give good reasons to change, like reducing costs in other areas, making their staff work better, even getting orders in quicker!!
Wireless Solutions- products
Wireless data can be split into four main product groups;
- GPRS subscription on a device
- Laptop cards (also known as dongles)
- PDA devices
What is the difference between voice and data?
Even on a phone call, the sound of our voice is split into electrical sounds, called impulses. These are then put back together again at the receiving end, and we recognise the sound (hopefully as a voice!)
Data works the same way, but the quality if the voice, or how quickly we get the data, depends on the 'speed' of the connection.
Speed is usually measured by Kbps (kilobytes per second)
A mobile phone voice call is 9.6Kbps
A landline phone is 56Kbps (That's why a landline call sounds better!)
GPRS, for data, is between 56Kbps - 128Kbps
3G is at least 384Kbps
Broadband at home; At least 2Mb (2,000Kbps!)
How does GPRS work?
GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) works by splitting the information into small packets. This allows them to move faster through the network, so getting more information to and from the device, and more quickly too.
3G etc. Works on similar principles, so as the numbers above suggest, it simply moves these packets more quickly.
This is simply an add-on to a standard mobile phone, allowing for internet access/e-mail access from the phone. In some cases you can plug a phone into your laptop via a cable (or bluetooth) allowing your laptop to connect to the internet.
Laptop cards/ Dongles
Every laptop should have one!!
Most laptops now have wi-fi access, but this can only be used in locations known as hot spots. If you're not in a hotspot, you have no way of connecting to the internet.
Cards or Dongles simply slot into a laptop. They have a simcard built into them, and allow for GPRS and/or 3G access to the internet, and e-mail if you need it. They are usually simple to install and use and can be used almost anywhere in the world.
These devices have become the common word for e-mail on the move. Everyone has an idea of what a BlackBerry does, but still only 14Million are being used in the whole world, which means there are a lot of people who would still want one!!
BlackBerry has become popular because of its ease of use, reliability, security standards and versatility, and also its software means that your e-mail is "pushed" to you. On any other device, you have to log on to the internet and "pull" your e-mails.
PDA's (Personal Digital Assistant)
These are essentially'pocket laptops', with versions of software like Word etc built into them. Originally made to be electronic diaries, recently they have had simcard slots built into them to allow for internet/e-mail on the move capability. The main difference between these and a BlackBerry is that they have a touch screen, and can be used to create new documents.