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In this guest post, Procurement Leaders invites VykeBusiness’ Mark Egginton to offer some insight into how telecom buyers can get a grip on smartphone spend.
We live in a society that can’t wait to adopt the latest technology, no more so than with smartphones. Month after month new models become available, each one outsmarting its predecessor – a problem for buyers of telecoms services.
However, is there a way for businesses to be smart about managing the cost of smartphones, without missing out on the opportunity?
Many organisations restrict mobile phone use to home country calls only due to the high costs of international calls and roaming. These calls are high because of, let’s face it, a lack of competition between the small number of mobile network providers, who use the ‘high cost of infrastructure’ to excuse eye watering international call costs.
If mobile phones are becoming smarter, why can’t we be smarter in the way we use these devices? Why do we restrict staff to landlines and computers to call internationally? The benefits of allowing employees to use their mobiles to make all calls will bring substantial gains to business.
What I am talking about here is nothing new. Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) has been around for twenty years but has been seen as lacking reliability to become a business standard. Peer to peer VoIP does offer a low cost or free approach to making calls, but it is restricted by the need to diarise calls to ensure both parties are at their computers to use a particular service. It lacks immediacy and spontaneity which seems a backward step. A bit like aviation losing Concorde, we are going back to the days of booking international calls.
Consumer VoIP providers have made huge inroads to the international calling space of phone operators but business is yet to be convinced. I feel this is due to current mobile VoIP solutions being designed for leisure rather than business and the perception that the call quality is not as good a traditional mobile operator. Plus from a financial management perspective, pre-payment is required which plays havoc with cash flow and financial planning.
Technology, such as we provide, is designed to make the most of these opportunities. With better global connectivity and more Wi-Fi hotspots business can, for the first time, authorise the use of an international calling app with confidence.
Unlike aviation with Concorde, for me the technology to make international calls from a mobile device is taking a step forward. Business can now embrace a reliable and quality way to make low cost and free international mobile calls to any phone.
Mark Egginton is sales director for VykeBusiness.