Forward-looking CIOs have been trialing 5G to ensure they have the best tools in their arsenal to adjust to recent fluctuating conditions. Whether it’s being at the forefront of leading customer innovations or shifting the entire company to working remotely, IT has been asked to step in and do a lot in recent months. Technology has enabled businesses to persevere and thrive through recent dramatic business shifts and never has it been more beneficial to the organization.
Increasingly, IT has been tasked to stand ready in any event with a responsive, “anywhere” network that adjusts to 3 types of scenarios:
- Customer trends, such as using technology to help deliver personalized, customer services
- Unforeseen events, causing shifting operating models to deliver services differently than in prior circumstances
- Technology shifts, such as using video to validate services performed to better meet customers’ expectations
Throughout recent changes, businesses need situational awareness of what’s happening on location, even if they can’t be physically present or able to interact with customers face-to-face. Using agile networks, organizations can quickly shift when and where the interactions take place to extend their reach to meet their customers in a new way.
Now that Cradlepoint has been delivering 5G products for 3 months in North America, and a year in Australia, this is a great opportunity to share how customers are using 5G to accelerate projects and connect their organizations.
Australian Retailer Trials 5G to Provide Enhanced Customer Planning and Services
“Create a bathroom that’s better than you imagined” opens the advertising on the Reece website, where helpful advice abounds, and photographs showcase beautiful settings to inspire customers to consider remodeling projects. Reece is Australia's largest plumbing and bathroom supplies business, available in over 600 locations across Australia. They offer kitchen and bath supplies, plumbing, irrigation, pool supplies and heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) products and services. Not only do they feature hundreds of leading brands, but they also offer professional services to assist customers in turning their inspirations into real projects.
The company recently trialed Cradepoint’s 5G indoor and outdoor adaptors in its retail stores, showrooms and distribution centres for primary branch connectivity, mobility and IoT use cases. “Reece has been experimenting with 5G for the past 12 months. We’ve seen first-hand the opportunities and benefits this technology offers. Pairing Cradlepoint adapters with 5G has given us even more ways to provide bespoke service to meet our customers’ ever-evolving needs,” said Tim Ronan, Voice and Data Networks Lead, Reece Group.
Reese is one of the latest examples of businesses trialing 5G with Cradlepoint in Australia along with cellular provider Telstra which began a little more than a year ago, including Taylor Construction and WISE Employment .
Texas, USA City Celebrates Fourth of July Holiday Wherever its Citizens Can Watch
The City of Irving, Texas wanted to provide its patriotic citizens a choice of where and how to celebrate their Fourth of July holiday in an innovative way in July 2021. “Thanks to cutting-edge technology, thousands of people were able to enjoy the Irving Brings Back the Spark fireworks show from the comfort of their electronic devices.” But to extend the event to its citizenry, they needed to broadcast the fireworks in high-definition video using 5G.
The press release from the City of Irving explains it well: “Through a collaborative effort with its wireless communication vendors, Irving’s Information Technology department installed a newly deployed, state-of-the-art hardware device at Levy Event Plaza that provided a line of site and allowed for a strong 5G Ultra-Wideband signal to broadcast the live celebration. Irving Community Television Network’s (ICTN) YouTube channel livestreamed the full event to approximately 3,000 viewers, as well as provided a livestream to the Toyota Music Factory Texas Lottery Plaza screens located blocks from the main event. The innovative solution involved weeks of planning among several City of Irving departments including Parks and Recreation, Information Technology, Communications, and the city’s wireless communication partners Verizon Public Sector, Cradlepoint and Sure Call.”
To ensure that the event proceeded without a hitch, the wireless communications team conducted weeks of planning and live tests in advance to ensure that the mmWave 5G Ultra-Wideband signal would be in place for the livestream event.
“To broadcast a momentous event such as our Fourth of July celebration, we needed to ensure an excellent experience for our viewers. With Cradlepoint’s 5G Wideband adapter and Verizon’s Ultra-Wideband network, we reached a level of cellular performance capacity we’d never seen before.”, said John Chaney, IT Communications Manager for the City of Irving, Texas. “The festivities and viewing experience were exceptional, and our city was able to celebrate together.”
Lean IT Operations Builds in Efficiencies Using 5G Cellular to Better Utilize High-Definition Video
Henley Enterprises, one of the largest Valvoline Instant Oil Change franchise groups with 225 locations in 10 states in the US has been operating about 3 dozen service centers using Cradlepoint cellular for primary connectivity for years. Broadband options near those stores are limited, congested or too costly. According to Robert Reeder, CIO for Henley, they are trialing 5G in pilot cases “where they need cellular connectivity but struggle with the current speeds of cellular.” Known for offering a variety of maintenance services from 15-minute oil changes to fluid and filter replacement and tire rotations, Henley uses high-definition video extensively in their operations to track service technicians for safety and technical training, as well as having a complete record of the service completed on the cars for customer service verification. Additionally, they also operate video surveillance security and perimeter monitoring of the sites and back lots to protect the assets and personnel in the stores. Reeder would like to have the high-definition video more easily accessible to management and other personnel who need to view or retrieve it. With the increased speeds and the low latency of 5G, Henley is targeting specific stores with the highest connectivity challenges to use the 5G networks to enhance the store network performance.
Henley partners with the T-Mobile network where they have negotiated data pooling between all the stores to connect cell phones, iPads and primary cellular or failover networking. In some locations they get “better connectivity with cellular” and they use broadband WAN as the failover or exclusively cellular with dual SIMs for redundancy. Reeder has been impressed how his 3-person IT staff is able to easily deploy, monitor and troubleshoot the networks and establish routing and traffic shaping policies through Cradlepoint's NetCloud Manager. They are even able to run and manage the connectivity to the network video recording (NVR) through NetCloud and the cellular connections. Additionally, requirements that would have needed custom configurations, complexity or additional costs with other networking vendors were a part of the NetCloud service. Reeder, who is experienced working with security, was impressed with Cradlepoint’s built-in application-aware firewall, IDS/IPS, VPN, and content filtering security available and the ease of management through NetCloud. When asked to describe his experience with Cradlepoint, he says, it’s “transformational”.
Cradlepoint is continuing to innovate on providing the best 5G connectivity to help more organizations take advantage of using agile networks, to extend the reach of the organization in a new way. Cradlepoint provides 5G choice to customize a platform to meet the unique networking needs in terms of spectrum, carrier, country, organization or use case through its NetCloud Service. Also, with its new E3000 Series Enterprise routers with embedded 5G, Cradlepoint delivers new levels of WAN speed, agility, and resilience to enable immediate roll-out of 5G applications across the globe. With all these considerations and touchpoints, Cradlepoint is committed to help you Find Your 5G.