The surprising importance of the feature phone in key industries.

Feature phones continue to play a vital role in many industries, providing the mobility that is necessary to certain job functions. Integrating devices in a unified communications system would smooth interaction but it’s a mistake to think that this requires costly smartphones. Instead, feature phones can be fully integrated with fixed devices, reducing costs and providing enhanced capabilities that benefit all. MNOs and MVNOs can accelerate B2B service penetration by offering true, UC solutions that do not depend on device migration and which meet key cost management concerns.

Have you ever noticed that airport staff or those in the transportation industry making calls to their colleagues? While some may use desktop phones, a significant proportion are equipped with mobile devices, so that they can move around within the facility. However, these are not usually shiny smart devices but instead are more likely to be good old-fashioned feature phones.

Feature phones provide mobility, allowing staff to move from location to location while fulfilling their roles. If the main purpose is simply to make and receive calls – in other words, to communicate effectively with colleagues, then a smart phone is superfluous, an unnecessary expense.

With smart phones becoming the norm, it’s easy to think that they somehow change the basic nature of communications but it would be misleading. People in specific roles need to stay in touch with their colleagues as well as others outside the organisation but a smart phone doesn’t bring anything new to this requirement.

However, while feature phones can satisfy mobility requirements, they are not typically integrated into the organisations call management solution. People need to communicate, wherever they are and for their devices to be fully integrated into a communications solution. Shinier or more expensive device are not necessary.

In this case, what really matters is the problem of unifying devices in the deployed fleet, so that mobile and fixed phones can be part of the same communication solution, with calls being routed seamlessly to, between and from employees, irrespective of device, with true integration between the devices. The answer is a unified communications solution that works across any interface and does not require an app-based, data-driven approach that is simply unsuitable for the real working environments that are common to many industries.

Equipping everyone with a simple but capable device for their role means that communications between groups, teams and departments can be expedited. Mobile PBX capabilities can deliver this, ensuring a seamless communications experience regardless of device and without the need for a data-driven application that would, in turn, require investment in smart devices.

For example, Gintel’s Easy Business Communications Suite can provide the integration capabilities that are required, so that people with mobile devices can access the same functionality as those with desk phones while minimising costs. It provides the PBX functions needed from the cloud, with true integration with mobile and fixed networks – without the need for apps that only work on smart phones and while avoiding the unnecessary expense of providing costly devices where they don’t add any value.

Such a solution would essentially make each connected device transparent, allowing equal access to the available services while providing the means to offer the right tool to each member of the organisation. This creates an opportunity for MNOs and MVNOs to offer hosted communications services that work across SIM-enabled and fixed devices, targeting organisations that have voice communications needs but which also need to unify their device fleets, creating a better experience.

We’ve written a lot about the need to segment offers. This applies to technology as well as the needs of employees and organisations in different sectors. Voice communications is essential in the transport, air, health and other industries – mobility is a requirement for many within these but smart phones, while nice, do not solve the problem of unifying communications on their own. Instead, they add costs to price sensitive industries – the feature phone remains a powerful tool that is more than capable of providing the performance that is required.

Gintel’s Easy Virtual PBX delivers the unified communications experience that meets all requirements. Because it can work with any device – not just smart phones – it provides a comprehensive solution that means more industries can be served with tailored solutions, helping MNOs and MVNOs broaden their markets and increasing their appeal. Why not find out how you can deliver a complete, comprehensive solution to meet the needs of different industries? Get in touch today!

B2B Services, Mobile PBX, MVNO, MNO

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