Launches new business and public sector-focused products to drive economic impact of 4G, including Connected Vehicle, Connected Health and first in new Connected Camera range
EE has announced a new range of products for businesses aimed at connecting workers, their customers, and machines as the Internet of Things (IoT) has an increasing impact on business.
The UK-based mobile operator now has more than half a million business and public sector organisation accounts, 75% of which are on 4G. EE has now deployed new mobile technologies, including Connected Vehicle, 4G Rapid Site, and Connected Health, which it said show the significant impact of enhanced connectivity on vital UK services, as well as highlighting some of the most pressing issues facing the UK today.
The operator claimed that 4G is helping to ease the pressure that many organisations are facing to deliver better public services, more efficiently. In the NHS, mobile technologies can improve communications between patients and primary and secondary care providers, potentially reducing missed and unnecessary GP and outpatient appointments by 65% and saving £585million towards reducing the current £2billion deficit.
For house builders, getting connected to 4G in up to three days rather than waiting more than a month for broadband, enables homes to be built more quickly, more cost effectively, and with a lower carbon footprint.
Meanwhile for emergency services like Staffordshire Police, deploying 4G mobile devices could save 250,000 hours of front line staff time per year, the equivalent of more than 100 officers on the beat.
EE CEO, Olaf Swantee, commented: “We’ve shown what 4G can do for consumers, and now businesses and the public sector are using the quality and reliability of the network that we’ve built to boost the UK economy and tackle some of the biggest issues facing Britain today. The impact of 4G adoption on vital UK services is incredibly powerful. Helping the NHS and emergency services provide better service to the community, more cost effectively, is exactly the type of real world benefit that our world leading mobile network enables. That’s why we’re launching our new capabilities for these sectors and helping them prepare for the IoT future where everything is connected.”
New research from EE in conjunction with the Centre for Economic & Business Review (CEBR) and YouGov estimates that the boost to UK Plc in 2015 due to efficiency and productivity gains made from 4G adoption is £8.9 billion, and set to rise each year.
Other notable trends from the EE research show that nearly half of businesses say that 4G is critical to their competitiveness in today’s business environment, and two thirds of users say that 4G has boosted their productivity by 10% or more.
EE already provides connectivity for NHS trusts and GPs across the country. The launch of new mobile Interactive Messaging services and trials of the Patient GP and Clinical Observation Applications will help facilitate better communication between the NHS and patients and help provide better care to patients in hospital.
Dr. Magnus Harrison, executive medical director Burton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Emergency Medicine Consultant, commented: “Patients deserve to have the very best experience at every stage of their journey, and technology is a vital enabler for this. We must use mobile and digital technologies to break down barriers in healthcare, allowing us to better engage with our patients, to give them the most appropriate care, and to do that more efficiently and cost effectively. Mobile-first products and services such as those from EE have the potential to deliver more connected care and the cost savings that the NHS so critically needs.”
Connected Vehicle from EE integrates an industrial 4G router and powerful high gain antenna into cars and vans, turning them into wireless hotspots that can connect any device, from laptops and tablets in utility vehicles to EKG machines in ambulances.
This is being used by Staffordshire Police; Matthew Ellis, police and crime commissioner, Staffordshire, stated: “My aspiration is for Staffordshire to be the most technologically advanced police service by 2016. Fast, reliable connectivity in the field means officers can spend more time in the community, allowing them to access critical systems remotely and cut the time they spend on administrative tasks. The ongoing rollout of mobile technology to officers is helping to free up an extra 250,000 hours of police time to be out on the beat, the equivalent of over an extra 100 officers on duty.
Ellis added: “Deploying 4G connected devices has already boosted efficiency, in some cases allowing officers to cut administrative time on jobs that could take days down to minutes. By providing high speed connectivity in vehicles as well, we’ll be able to turn their police vehicles into hotspots, giving officers, support teams, and in the future partners, vital access to information on the move.”
EE’s 4G Rapid Site is a fully managed service providing 4G broadband, in less than three days, to ensure that construction firms do not have to wait to have a fixed broadband line installed and provisioned, which takes a month or more, on average.
Howard Topliss, CEO of Green Square, home builders for social housing, noted: “More houses, more quickly, more cost effectively. That’s the challenge we and the industry face, and that’s the challenge that mobile is helping us to overcome. If we can get working on a site without waiting for a fixed broadband connection then we can save money and build more houses, it’s that simple. And being connected reduces contractor rates, reduces travel costs, improves carbon footprint, and gives an overall improved productivity.”
Also, following the success of the 4GEE Action Cam, EE is launching the 4GEE Capture Cam, a 4G streaming camera for both consumers and businesses. Lightweight and wearable, Capture Cam allows businesses to stream high definition video wherever they are to their customers, partners and colleagues, and consumers to share with friends and family. The 4GEE Capture Cam will be made available on plans for consumers in the coming weeks.
EE is additionally launching 4G Public WiFi In A Box, providing plug-and-play, regulatory compliant 4G Wi-Fi that businesses can safely provide to their customers.
In September 2015 EE launched the EE Connect platform, the UK’s first 4G-capable, dedicated IoT platform for businesses, enabling customers to connect, manage and report on millions of connections, in the UK and around the world. Royal Mail Group was announced last week as the first major customer of the new platform.
Finally, EE will also be shortly launching EE Pet Pal, a new connected device that will allow customers to makes sure they do not lose track of their four-legged friends. Further details on EE Pet Pal will be revealed soon.