What is 5G?

Motorola’s first UK mobile phone from 1983, cost £2,600

5G stands for 5th Generation, the next flavour of cellular mobile technology (ie Internet managed by mobile phone companies over their networks).

Why the hype?

Those of us who witnessed the birth (ha, those pre-Internet days!) and evolution of IT technology have an understandable contempt borne of marketing fatigue for ‘the next new thing’.

However, we are now at a major milestone in IT. Three clear innovations are coming at us fast, and they are screaming out for a new kind of Internet to work properly. The Internet they demand must be much faster, much more responsive, available everywhere and be cheap. What are they?

  1. Machine Learning aka AI. This is in effect a Database/Dataset lookup in real time, and needs very quick send<->response times and the analysis & movement of large amounts of data. It might be your Doctor referencing your scans with the NHS Database or that facial recognition App on your iPhone indexing every Internet image (yes, this is reality; Cambridge Analytica claims a 3 billion image database).
  2. Internet-Of-Things aka ioT. Everything we buy, use and interact with will have network connectivity; from your heart pacemaker to your car tyres, from your sunglasses to your trainers. Devices will be under the observation and control of more and more complex automated systems, designed to be efficient, responsive and presumably make profit. This is not necessary a bad thing, which is just as well because AI is here to stay. These devices will make your iPhone & FitBit look as hi-tech as the Motorola phone above.
  3. Virtual Reality. Not just for video games but a million different uses.

5G will fill this gap with two criteria.

Being rolled out first by O2 in summer 2020, 5G promises transmission speeds that are theoretically 100 times faster than 4G (current fastest).

Download a 2 hour HD movie in under 4 seconds (compare to 26hrs on 3G)

Response rates up to 10x faster than standard home Internet. This is essential for new technologies to run properly.

Can I record my business telephone calls?

The simple answer is YES, however there are a few conditions attached.

The modern phone systems we supply allow you to automatically record all your company phone calls, with a simple way to retrieve these files from the archive. They are saved as .wav files, and can be played as you would any other sound file.

In call options with 3CX Phone System

If you’re not planning on releasing the call record to any third party, and you’re only recording the call for your own use, then you don’t need to let the caller know.

So, if your business is looking to record calls to improve customer service, you don’t need to obtain permission.

If you are going to release the recording to anyone else or use it in court, then you need to obtain permission. This can be as simple as informing the person on the other end of the line that you are recording them.

This can also easily be achieved by playing a welcome message when someone phones your business. “Thank you for calling COMPANY NAME, please note we record our calls for quality and monitoring purposes.”

This is now common practice and you will be familiar with these greetings if you’ve ever called a Utility company or Bank.


The Death of Windows 7

Microsoft have announced the end of their support for the Windows 7 family of Operating Systems. After January 14, 2020, they will no longer provide security updates and insist on an upgrade to Windows 10.

My PC is just how I like it, no upgrade for me..

If you decide that an upgrade is not for you, your PC will still work with no immediate issues. However it will become vulnerable to security risks and viruses as time passes and no further security updates are made available.

The nature of the Internet and on-line threats means your comouter and web-browser may be susceptible to hacking attempts (and other assorted nastiness) as Windows 7 vulnerabilities are discovered and exploited.

If you don’t upgrade to Windows 10, at the very least make sure you have;

  • An up-to-date AntiVirus (free or paid for)
  • Backups of any and all valuable files, photos, etc.
  • Don’t do any financial transactions on that PC!

The new phenomenon of Garden Offices

Congratulations to Mr & Mrs Pryke of Richmond for finally completing their beautiful Garden Office. It has been a pleasure planning Telecoms, Internet & TV services to the new building, running all the cabling and installing Wifi and Audio Visual. We even mounted their TV!

It seems working from home is now a regular thing for many corporates and having a dedicated structure at the end of your garden is a lot nicer than working in the spare room.

We look forward to helping other Customers with their home projects.

A lonely Shed
A brand new Garden Office

BT’s policy on ISDN2 line phase out

There appears to be a lot of confusion about the phasing out of ISDN2 phone lines, in my opinion mostly caused by alarmist Sales ploys.  This mature technology is indeed being retired by British Telecom, who have set a withdrawal start date of 2020.  At this point BT will no longer take new orders for ISDN2 and Customers must instead choose a technology such as VoIP.  The ISDN2 product will be completely withdrawn by 2025 if they meet the schedule.

BT are doing this as the high operating cost vs low profit margins of supporting this reliable technology in a world where competitive VoIP has swamped the market.  Installation and support Engineers must be properly trained for the ISDN2 network making it a relatively expensive product for BT to continue.  There are many businesses for whom the reliability of ISDN2 is not only essential but life-saving (NHS, Care Homes, Emergency Services, etc).