Push-to-talk: instant communication for your workforce
Any business with staff in the field knows just how critical communication can be. While Push-to-talk (PTT) has been around for a while, Bell is taking it to another level with their next generation PTT service. Traditionally limited to rugged mobile devices, next generation PTT is available across an ever-expanding range of devices — including smartphones and superphones.
Ryan Smith, Director of Operations, of Peninsula Video & Sound (PVS), has been operating on next generation PTT for a while now. Using devices such as the Samsung Galaxy SII, BlackBerry Curve 9360, and the Sonim XP5520 BOLT, he’s identified several reasons it’s become an invaluable tool for his business.
Increased data capabilities
Since switching PTT providers, PVS has really noticed a boost in data speeds. New technology means they can email, browse the web, and tether on a fast network, all while having the PTT service available at the push of a button.
The increased data speeds really come in handy when sending and receiving files, like blueprints, on their devices. “Managers and supervisors are now getting more work done because of the speed that they’re able to download documents right in the field,” says Smith.
Plus, operating on advanced smartphones and superphones allows them to edit different file types right on their phones. In the past, employees would have to wait until they were back at their computer to download and edit files. This “makes a huge difference in the field,” says Smith.
Broadcast your message
Another feature PVS finds useful is the ability to communicate to many people at once using a single device. Similar to a mass email, the one-to-many functionality allows them to broadcast messages to the whole team (up to 99 devices) while maintaining instant communication between the team. This comes in handy often for PVS, such as sending out a detour when a traffic jam blocks the route to a job site.
Switch networks with minimal downtime
Switching providers can sometimes be a daunting task, especially with a mobile workforce like PVS being in the field as much as they are. “Their support was key,” recalls Smith. “I couldn’t have a transition where we had downtime because every minute lost is money lost.” PVS’s transition to Bell was rather seamless with the entire team up and running on their 125 devices in less than a day.
With the switch, they’re also now enjoying the ability to transition new employees into their phone system a lot easier than before. “On the old network, we would have to update the whole 125 phone network with the new employees name and information,” says Smith. “We can now update the information on the portal and it will update everyone’s phonebook automatically.” This has been a big time-saver.
A rugged device built for the field
PVS’ cable installers and damage prevention technicians require rugged devices in the field. After witnessing Sonims durability in the Guinness Book of World Records and experiencing it first hand in the field, Smith’s installers have come to rely on the Sonim XP5520 BOLT.
“We work high up on really dirty, dusty construction sites,” says Smith. “Phones are constantly falling. We’ve even had phones fall into manholes – so we really rely on the Sonim for its durability”. Even in a rare case that the phone doesn’t survive, its 3-year warranty keeps Smith from constantly paying for replacement phones.
Are you using Push-to-talk?
Do you have any experience using PTT? Tell us about it below. If you’re not using PTT, what’s holding you back?