But Is 4th-Gen Really All It’s Cracked Up To Be? We Run Down 3 Major Pros and Cons of 4G.
Still holding your mobile phone up to the window? Then you’re not yet part of the latest generation of flexible, tech-savvy mobile workers who are taking the world of business by storm.
A selection of business owners and employees in major cities across the world are flashing the latest mobile devices and enjoying nippy 4G connectivity to carry out tasks like video conferencing – on a mobile phone – which was once unheard of. With 4G, all that becomes possible. At least, so we’re told.
Tom Ball, founder of coworking network NearDesk, is a classic ‘mobile worker’ – he’s constantly on the move, meeting clients and making connections to build his business. Tom believes workers waste too much time commuting when they could work more productively closer to home, and he created NearDesk to help make that happen.
Of course for workers to be productive, wherever they are, they need the right tools – and that’s where 4G comes in. Tom recently featured in a Vodafone promotional advert for its 4G roll-out, which demonstrates exactly how business owners and employees can make the most of working on the move – and stay productive while they’re at it.
But is 4G all it’s cracked up to be? Can it really help more professionals to stay productive on the move? We run down 3 pros and cons of 4G and how it can help – or hinder – business users:
Pros of 4G:
- 1) It’s fast. Users can expect speeds of 5-7 times more than 3G, making it more like a home or office broadband connection. No more awkward moments with clients, waiting for that file to download… and waiting…
- 2) 4G makes demanding tasks like video calling and sending large files possible, meaning you can indeed work on the go. It helps to make workers more productive when they’re out and about – and in the office too.
- 3) Most new smartphones and devices that are rolling off the production line are 4G-enabled. So that swish iPhone 5 you just bought is all ready to go.
Cons of 4G:
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- 1) Availability is patchy. In the UK, major cities like London and Birmingham are covered across various operators, but smaller cities and towns are still waiting. This means you’ll have to revert to 3G or Wi-Fi hotspots to connect in these areas – even if you’re paying for a 4G contract.
- 2) Older mobile devices and models won’t work with 4G, so you’ll need to fork out for an upgrade.
- 3) 4G is more powerful and uses much more battery, so expect to charge your mobile device a lot more. And get used to carrying a charger with you. Everywhere.
All things considered, 4G is an exciting prospect that, once established, can indeed play a large part in the mobile/flexible working revolution. And while various teething problems have yet to be overcome, it’s already making a difference – just ask Tom Ball.
Workspace operators should appreciate the difference that 4G can make, as it will equip more workers with the tools necessary to get out of the office and work anywhere. This could signal greater demand for flexible workspace including touchdown space, business lounges, coworking venues and meeting rooms. Operators in major cities may already be seeing the difference.
Does 4G help make your working day easier? Does it prompt you to step out of the office? Or are you still waiting for it? Let us know.
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