Automation vs the human touch – Which is better for smooth operations?

Posted on Jun 06 2017 | Comments Off on Automation vs the human touch – Which is better for smooth operations?
Paul North

Paul North, Sales Manager

It doesn’t seem to matter what you’re trying to achieve or which company or industry it involves, at some point in your interaction you’ll inevitably face an automated system of some description. Got a problem with an invoice, paying your car tax, ordering something from Amazon, submitting your gas meter readings, checking-in for your flight? All automated!

Whilst sometimes it’s just the automated phone system you need to go through before your call is directed to a customer service agent, or that the automated/online approach is optional rather than mandatory, more often than not nowadays the whole process can only be done online through websites, interfaces and automated email confirmations. But is a reliance on automation the best approach and will it eventually eradicate the human aspect, or will we always want/need that human touch too?

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It’s USOs all round in the party election manifestos

Posted on May 31 2017 | Comments Off on It’s USOs all round in the party election manifestos

It’s election time again, and regardless of your personal political preferences, we thought a brief summary of what each of the major parties has to say about all things Internet related could be useful for our readers.

While we’re not endorsing any particular party in this article and are only reporting the details of each party’s published manifestos with regards to our industry, we found all the pledges to be  somewhat underwhelming. Unsurprisingly to most, as this is them essentially ‘selling themselves’ to the public they’ve clearly scooted over any details around funding or implementation and instead focused on headline-grabbing claims and pledges. Although, they too leave us somewhat flat.

Superfast broadband rollout pledges

A positive to take from this year’s campaign trail is that it’s good to see all three major political parties promising to ensure superfast broadband delivery to the whole of the UK in one form or another.

In summary, Labour has promised 30Mbps minimum by 2022 with hints of 300Mbps within 10 years, the Lib Dems made a similar promise of 30Mbps by 2022 but added a 6Mbps upload and unlimited usage cap with further 2Gbps fibre pledge and the Conservatives are already in the process of introducing their 10Mbps USO and completing their superfast broadband rollout.

However, it’s not anything new and exciting, is it? It’s all been discussed before. The Government recently threw out suggested amendments from the House of Lords to increase the current 10Mbps USO to 30Mbps due to funding and implementation concerns so how exactly do Labour and the Lib Dems plan to overcome these issues? Your guess is as good as ours! As for the Conservative manifesto, as we would expect with the existing Government, it’s just a confirmation of their existing strategies and plans – nothing particularly new there either.

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Investment in value – keeping ahead of service delivery

Posted on May 25 2017 | Comments Off on Investment in value – keeping ahead of service delivery

This year we’ve celebrated our 21st year of business – there have been a number of milestones that we’ve achieved over this time, but perhaps one of the most significant was back in 2007 when we took the brave decision to roll out our own national network with complete UK coverage. Many of our peers couldn’t understand our decision, but as a progressive and forward thinking business we felt that the long term returns would outweigh the short-term expense and operational pain. Fortunately, we were right – we certainly wouldn’t still be here if we’d made the wrong decision.

Over the last ten years we’ve seen more and more of our market peers follow in our footsteps and build out their own national networks to a certain degree; validating the decision that we took all of those years ago. While they’ve been doing this, we’ve worked on maturing our network, focusing on building in additional capacity and upgrading hardware to stay ahead of increasing bandwidth demands. This work has meant that we’ve been able to deliver a consistently top-notch service to all of the business and residential customers introduced to us by our partners. We’ve also continued to look ahead, working on advancements that will add value to our partners for the next 5 – 10 years.

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New broadband advertising proposals – clearer or even more confusing?

Posted on May 15 2017 | Comments Off on New broadband advertising proposals – clearer or even more confusing?

CAP (Committees of Advertising Practice) has opened a public consultation seeking views on 4 new proposals to strengthen the current broadband speed advertising guidelines. We’re pleased to see CAP take this approach but we still have some concerns over their practicality and potential impact.

The consultation will last for 10 weeks, closing on 13th July 2017 and the options they propose (whilst also stating they are open to suggestions) are to base all broadband speed claims on:

  • Peak-time median download speed
  • 24-hour national median download speed
  • Range of peak-time download speeds available to the 20th to 80th percentile of users
  • Range of 24-hour national download speeds available to the 20th to 80th percentile of users

They also encourage the provider to direct consumers towards more specific broadband speed estimators to receive a more accurate idea of the speed actually achievable on their line.

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What are you looking for most in a new VoIP solution?

Posted on May 09 2017 | Comments Off on What are you looking for most in a new VoIP solution?

Hosted voice provides healthy margins, alternative revenue streams and flexible disaster recovery options to the channel which is why this market continues to grow and prosper. But, we would like to know what you and your customers require most from a hosted voice solution – is it simply down to price and margins or is the underlying infrastructure and reliability of the service of higher priority? How important are white label options, easy ordering and simple billing to your business and your customers? Or does it all come down to the variety of features available?

Let us know what you value most by participating in our latest poll located to the right of this post.

 

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Digital Economy Bill 2017 Update

Posted on May 03 2017 | Comments Off on Digital Economy Bill 2017 Update

Last week the Digital Economy Bill 2016-7 was passed by both Houses of Parliament and now receives Royal Assent which means it will be law imminently. The new legislation brings with it a number of important new implications for the industry (with some last minute changes to be aware of) so we’ve provided a summary of the key points below:

30Mbps USO scrapped in favour of 10Mbps

The 10Mbps USO for broadband has been on the cards for quite some time and its approval comes as no surprise to us. However, quite recently a proposal was passed by the House of Lords to increase this to 30Mbps by the existing 2020 deadline which seemed completely implausible to us. This has since been scrapped and the original 10Mbps confirmed; however a further clause to increase the USO has now been included. The Government will now be able to raise the USO’s minimum speed, once 75% of households have been upgraded to ‘superfast broadband’ services.

A full consultation is now expected to be held to iron out the details of the USO implementation, funding and requirements on industry.

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Position your business for success with DX

Posted on Apr 27 2017 | Comments Off on Position your business for success with DX

In our modern society data is king. According to global tech firm IBM, we’re creating 2.5 quintillion bytes of data every single day, from every single interaction that we have with technology. To put it into context, this means that every time a web page is viewed, a smart fridge is opened, a sensor detects rain or a multitude of other ‘everyday’ activities is performed, data is created. This exponential growth in the industry of data means that it’s worth a small fortune, which is great news for the channel – all of that data needs to be stored and get from A to B after all.

Now consider this value in the context of digital transformation (DX), where businesses are moving to virtual platforms, embracing the Internet of Things and employing the best of technology in order to ‘stay in the game’. As it’s now commonly accepted that digitalisation is ‘table stakes’ for business success, opportunities will exist here for some time. Research agency IDC recently predicted that the global annual spend on DX projects will increase from $1.2 trillion this year (that’s a smidge over £930 billion at today’s exchange rate) to $2 trillion by 2020. That’s a lot of technology being adopted that’ll require connectivity to make the best of it.

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5 signs you need a PWAN

Posted on Apr 11 2017 | Comments Off on 5 signs you need a PWAN
Lee Hill

Lee Hill, Pre-Sales Technical Manager

Choosing the right connectivity solution for your customer is crucial. Here are 5 signs that a private wide area network (PWAN) is what’s required.

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Corporate Social Responsibility: Is it worthwhile for businesses?

Posted on Apr 05 2017 | Comments Off on Corporate Social Responsibility: Is it worthwhile for businesses?

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), also known as ‘Social Impact’, isn’t just throwing a few quid to a charity each Christmas or sponsoring the Sales Manager’s half marathon, it’s much more than that and if implemented correctly, can have a truly positive effect on your business from improving staff motivation and productivity, through to reducing costs, improving public perception, reducing risk and increasing sales. Perhaps that’s why 64% of CEOs increased investment in Corporate Social Responsibility in 2016.

Our updated eBook explains how implementing a CSR strategy could make a positive difference to your business and the key considerations you need in place to ensure it works effectively.

Click to download your free copy

Whilst we’re on the subject of CSR and charitable activities – 25 members of the Entanet team are undertaking the Tough Mudder Challenge this May to raise more than £6,000 for Sands (Stillborn And Neo-natal Death Charity). If you’d like to support #teamenta please donate via our JustGiving page and use #teamenta in the comments section. Thanks for your support, we – and Sands – appreciate every penny!

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You think the IPA is bad – it could be worse, you could be in the USA!

Posted on Apr 03 2017 | Comments Off on You think the IPA is bad – it could be worse, you could be in the USA!

For two western countries that are relatively similar in many ways, it appears the UK and the USA could not have more opposing views when it comes to the protection of data and privacy. Whilst the UK Government continues to fend off ongoing legal challenges and criticism of its controversial IPA (Investigatory Powers Act) or Snoopers’ Charter as it’s widely nicknamed, the USA is about to make it perfectly legal for ISPs to sell off their customers’ personal information and web activity history to the highest bidders for commercial use.

As you know from our previous articles on the subject, the IPA requires UK ISPs to retain vast amounts of customer data including your online activity and enables the security agencies and police to access this data as and when they require, regardless of whether or not you are suspected of a crime. The latest challenge to this Act has come from the European Court of Justice who argued the new law contravenes existing European laws on privacy and data retention. See our article “How can the Investigatory Powers Act ever co-exist with the EU?” for more information.

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