4G – Long Term Evolution

Posted by Leadent Solutions on November 28, 2013

There is a magical relationship between morning tea and bbc.co.uk! I feel tea is more tasty when it is sipped with the news, may it be social, politics or technology.

A few days back, when I was browsing through the BBC website, I read an article that highlighted the failure of Vodafone on 3G mobile coverage. Mobile firm Vodafone has been rapped by regulator Ofcom for failure to meet its coverage obligations. It clearly stated that mobile coverage is a huge bugbear for consumers and one that Ofcom is determined to prioritise. Recently it produced a report suggesting that mobile coverage on Britain’s roads was poor.

So, is 4G the answer?

4G is the next logical step in the evolutionary world that is mobile technology. It has businesses asking questions about the possibilities of 4G’s speed, and if this can really change how they work? The answer is –YES!

Internet connectivity on mobile devices is now more of a necessity than a luxury. More and more mobile device users are constantly using their gadgets to connect to the Internet and stay online for very long periods of time. Considering this scenario, the latest 4G mobile network seems to be the answer for every mobile device owner.

Currently many mobile operators are building their 4G mobile network and investing money into it. It is expected that 4G coverage is only going to get better in the future. As of now there are 4G plans available from most of the operators like EE, O2, Vodafone but they are not yet rolled out all over the UK. This is expected to happen over the next couple of years.

4G is designed to provide more complete coverage with better penetration into buildings and deeper reach into rural areas. Previously forgotten villages and low revenue areas should be reached for the first time, since the network operators can provide coverage without having to build out as many base stations.

Does 4G just mean faster downloads? – No, it has much more to offer!

The exciting bit is not just how fast, but what mobile workers and businesses can do with that bandwidth. Indeed, it provides up to five times faster communication speeds, but understanding the potential behind the 4G revolution as a result of these speeds is the real key to unlocking its benefits.

The impact of 4G could be far reaching for business. Enhanced network bandwidth and throughput capabilities will not only ensure that the service is faster, but also more reliable. Users will feel secure that their mobile devices will perform when and where they’re required to. This improved performance will transform mobile devices in terms of overall capabilities and increase their use case from a business perspective, enabling new ways of working. Users of the 4G network will get the advantage of superior, secured and uninterrupted connectivity.

One of the advantages of 4G is that it promises online security. 4G networks offer complete privacy, security and safety. Due to the inherent SIM/user authentication built into mobile networks it can be simpler to secure. The areas of the 4G protocol that deal with security have been augmented so data transmission should be even safer than it is with 3G.

However, this has not been a common target for hackers so far – the endpoint device is the easiest thing to hack and it’s unlikely that 4G can help in this area. A boon for the workers on the move!

Consider an example where a contractor can make a video call to a structural engineer on a 4G-enabled tablet in a crisis situation and do a walk-around of the building. This allows the structural engineer to make site assessments without leaving their desk, in turn enabling them to assist with more queries in a day’s work. Reports can be submitted instantly and wirelessly, and digital photo and video capture will simplify processes and reduce the paperwork.

In short, it is likely we will see a real change for business mobile worker communications. With the virtual workforce growing and technology continuing to advance, more unique workspaces will evolve. It marks the total move away from traditional network switching to using the Internet Protocol (IP) for both voice and data, enabling operators to send information over their networks quickly and cost-effectively.

All in one, it gives what you expect! – Fast download speed, increased bandwidth, secured connectivity, fast streaming of videos, much more and yes, Cloud access.

As we enter the era of the cloud, field engineers need to access documents, databases and other corporate data stored securely in a centralised data centre. They want online access to this data; presentations crammed with multimedia information. This all needs fast, dependable internet at peak business hours.

Once a customer meeting is over, a salesperson needs the online power to immediately send a promised presentation or other large file from the train and not wait until they are back in the office. Travel time need not be dead time with 4G.

To conclude, it is important that businesses really capitalise on this development, and don’t ignore the benefits and new capabilities that could make their organisation’s and, in turn, their customers’ lives easier. In a broader sense, companies will see the productivity of their staff improve. This will then enable the business to progress at a faster rate as there will be an increase in products and services being offered. Progressing ahead of their competitors will be the ultimate gain in having a 4G-enabled business, and the 4G world will be a better and more productive place as a result. This may not happen overnight but there is some evidence that early adopters in the major conurbations have already started to try to steal a march on their business rivals.