In Building Cellular and its importance to transparent IT

If the internet goes down in your office, you’re going to know about it. If there’s a power cut, business would stop – and you can bet that it would be the top priority to ensure the business is back online as fast as humanly possible.

I’m not surprised that issues with mobile connectivity are so prevalent, yet people tend to just put up with sub-standard service in their facilities. Staff, visitors, customers and clients will all have at least one mobile device on them across multiple networks, therefore it is not surprising that the ability to connect in your facilities may be questionable.

In a recent survey by ExcelRedstone 31% of facility managers said mobile coverage was “poor” or worse – almost a third of respondents. That’s quite frankly terrible.

This level of dissatisfaction is why In Building Cellular (IBC) is fast gaining traction, but you’d be forgiven for not having heard of it – or at least not knowing the ins and outs of how it works. Put simply, IBC is installing your own equipment within your building to ensure that mobile devices have strong, reliable connections, whatever the network. This way they can go about their normal business without connectivity issues. You’re not creating your own mobile network, but you’re giving a helping hand to the mobile network providers that are already there.

You’ve no doubt had issues where you’ve been in a building and can’t get data, can’t make calls – or likely both. Quality may even vary within a single location, and the reasons can include:

  • The blocking effect of the building materials themselves prevent the outdoor mobile signals getting to the people inside.
  • Narrow streets, and tall buildings, create environments where the effectiveness of roof-top cell sites is impaired.
  • A very simple but all too common issue: too many people are trying to use the same networks at the same time.
  • You can have too much of a good thing. Mobile devices can struggle with the choice of too many outdoor cell sites in one location.

The next question may be: why not Wi-Fi? Wi-Fi still has its place and it’s best suited for everyday working requirements – for company laptops and mobility within the building. While great progress has been made in making Wi-Fi onboarding painless, it’s far from transparent. It’ll often require IT intervention and it requires users to manually find and connect to the network. This isn’t ideal for customers and other visitors to your building, or for your staff with their personal devices.

Wi-Fi also won’t help on the calls front, and with the best Wi-Fi in the world you’re going to run into issues when you are on that important call when entering or exiting the office. Turning a corridor or entering a lift may be the end of that conversation.

An In Building Cellular solution is both transparent and effortless, as it just makes existing devices work better. Zero intervention. It’s also better for your IT team as they don’t have to worry about personal devices from a security and admin perspective on the corporate network.

I don’t want to overplay the problem, and as I mentioned at the beginning, many of us make do. But in today’s world of seamless connectivity making do isn’t good enough, and particularly when it’s solvable with technologies such as IBC.

Customers and visitors who wish to remain in contact when in your buildings, staff who will feel concerned with lack of connectivity for their mobile devices, and people just doing their everyday work all will benefit from a sound IBC strategy, such as the service offered by ExcelRedstone.

For more information about how we can keep your business connected, please contact us on ibc@redstone.com