Free Wi-Fi now available on the London Eye
O2 has announced the World’s first free, HD Wi-Fi network on a continually moving structure, allowing visitors of the London Eye to capture and share their experiences as they go around – irrelevant of the country they are from or the network provider they use.
“We’re delighted to help Merlin Entertainments take their customers’ experiences to new heights. Our innovative, high density O2 Wifi solution is a world-first, offering seamless connectivity for customers throughout the iconic London Eye adventure. So whether it’s sharing a selfie, posting a photo of the stunning skyline or finding information about London attractions, visitors will be able to do this seamlessly and for free as they go around.” – Robert Franks, Director of Digital at O2.
The system has been designed to beam Wi-Fi coverage between 16 fixed access points on the iconic London Eye structure, without using fixed cables or satellite technology. To access the service, you simply need to register using your mobile number, while O2 customers will be connected automatically.
With views as far as Windsor Castle, it’s no surprise the Coca-Cola London Eye is the UK’s most popular paid for visitor attraction. With O2’s free Wi-Fi as yet another perk, alongside the 4D Cinema and interactive Samsung Galaxy Tab guides, we’re excited to see what other technology updates the London Eye will take advantage of in the future.
Project Beacon to be complete by 2018
Project Beacon involves two competing mobile networks, Vodafone and O2, joining forces to improve your mobile experience. Far from a merge, the partnership is focusing on the physical infrastructure of the networks. Vodafone and O2 are putting their masts together, removing duplicates and creating some news ones to give you even better mobile coverage across the UK. Vodafone will be in charge of the network maintenance in the West of the UK and Wales, while O2 will be looking after the East, including Northern Ireland.
This doesn’t mean that Vodafone and O2 will be sharing signal, spectrum, fibre backbone network or services – but will mean that when they’re finished, there will be about 18,500 masts across one grid – allowing Vodafone and O2 customers to receive signal from each of the masts across the UK. This will equal a 40% increase on sites available to either network currently – but a 10% reduction in total. The partnership will also see indoor network coverage improve for both networks to keep your workforce better connected.
Unfortunately, Project Beacon was initially expected to be finished by the end of 2015 however it does now see both with a population coverage of 97 per cent, just one per cent short of the target. More than 400 base stations are upgraded monthly under Project Beacon which has a total investment of £2 million.
“We expect Beacon to be completed by the end of this financial year in December. There will be a few sites left over, which include remote areas because it’s hard to bring fibre to them. We are working on those, but we expect Beacon to be more than 99.9 per cent finished by the end of the year.” – Kye Prigg, Vodafone UK Head of Networks.
- Dropped call rates have fallen from 0.67 per cent to 0.47 per cent. This drops to 0.09 per cent in cities such as London, which it claims is better than Hong Kong and Tokyo.
- A completion date of 2015 was set – two years earlier than the Ofcom target. However, figures obtained by Mobile News at the time showed they fell short with 63 per cent population coverage.
BT’s free WiFi, maps & call ‘InLink’ units now active in Camden High Street
BT has teamed up with WiFi specialist LinkNYC and outdoor advertising agency Primesight to offer you ultramodern kiosks in London. These kiosks known as ‘InLinks’ offer ‘the fastest’ public broadband speeds available. Better yet, these powerful kiosks offer more than lightning speeds. You’ll be able to make calls, charge your smartphone and gain access to maps, all free of charge.
All services are funded entirely from revenues made from the advertising on the Link’s digital displays. BT also intend to allocate 5% of airtime to non-commercial good causes to benefit the local community. The first InLinks are active in Camden High Street to offer hundreds of users speeds of up to 1Gbps from just one kiosk. If all goes to plan, more than 750 kiosks will be installed over the next few years, with more than 100 placed in Camden by 2017.
All existing BT phone boxes across the city will be replaced with the new kiosk system, with BT claiming that they will take up less space on the streets than the traditional phone box. Each kiosk is set to feature embedded sensors that can track air and noise pollution, outdoor temperature and traffic conditions, with the purpose of introducing smart services to local councils.
Key feature overview
- Connect to free ultrafast Wi-Fi using your personal device. (1)
- Access maps, directions, and city services from an easy-to-use touchscreen tablet. (2)
- Stay in touch with free phone calls from BT. (3)
- Press the dedicated red 999 button in the event of an emergency. (4)
- Safely charge your device using one of two USB ports. (5)
- Enjoy more room on the pavement with Link’s sleek, resilient design. (6)
- View public service announcements and more relevant advertising on two 135.7cm HD displays. (7)
London is second only to New York in welcoming Links to its streets, which were first installed in January this year as part of LinkNYC. Join our mailing list for further updates, and receive more of the latest mobile news and tips straight to your inbox.
Is your mobile investment protected?
Accidents happen. Ensure you have a safety net ready for your device.
mobilephonechecker.co.uk polled 1,486 UK adults who have all broken, dented, or scratched an iPhone handset. They found
the average broken iPhone is destroyed or damaged just 10 weeks after purchase – and under 6 weeks for an iPhone 4 or 5.
And when they’re not being broken, it seems they’re being stolen. With a recent report from the Home Office estimating more than 700,000 handsets were stolen in the space of year.
Top 5 ways to break an iPhone
1. Dropped on a hard surface (43%)
2. Fallen into water (toilet, sink, bath, etc) (35%)
3. Stood or sat on accidentally (32%)
4. Left on roof of car (12%)
5. Broken by child (10%)
We highly recommend you take out insurance and avoid the hefty costs of mobile repairs. We offer various deals for mobiles and tablets that cover accidental damage, theft, accidental loss and breakdown, starting at just £3.99 per month.
6 key questions your business needs to be able to answer
- Where are all my users spending their time on mobile?
- What are the most popular sites and apps?
- What is the split of business versus personal usage?
- Are our data plans and pools set correctly?
- What £ savings would we get by enforcing policy on specific apps?
- Where are our users around the world, and what data are they accessing?
Every business should have control of the devices entering their organisation, whether they are company devices or part of a BYOD programme. We can give you the advantage of unique visibility into data usage, through advanced analytics. Allowing you to easily identify areas for change, so you can take the first step in improving your telecoms strategy.
The personal usage on your company devices outweighs the business use? Your employees are spending too much time on Facebook? Or maybe you’re haunted by monthly bill shock? We can help you create the business policy you want, so you can rest assured that your company devices are being used in the way that you intended. While the three C’s: Content Control, Capping and Compression are at work – you can sit back and watch the savings roll in.
We partner with Wandera to offer you real-time insights into your mobile data using the world’s first gateway created solely for mobile traffic. This data management solution sits transparently between your employee devices and the internet, to allow for mobile data optimisation.