JT marketing and digital expertise in the running for two major awards

JT’s Christmas digital marketing campaign and the way data and insight is used to measure how customers rate their experiences have put JT on the shortlist for two national awards alongside some of the biggest names in the technology world.

The UK Digital Experience Awards has shortlisted JT in two categories – Best ‘Digital Marketing Campaign Initiative’ and Best ‘Use of Analytics and Insight’, alongside global household brands BT and EE.

JT’s ‘Step Into Christmas Together’ campaign which used Snapchat and Augmented Reality technology to create a festive virtual town has earned JT a place as one of five finalists. The campaign brought the highstreets’s magical appeal of Christmas to customers digitally, resulting in an 86% increase in online sales for the period. JT was also recognised for the changes it has put in place to collect customer experience data, allowing it to drive further improvements and channel more benefits back to its customers. As part of JT’s data analysis, it introduced ‘JT Voice’, an online feedback forum which has seen nearly 1,800 members register in the 12 months since it was launched.

Tamara O’Brien, Group Head of Marketing, Brand and Customer Experience, said: “I am thrilled that our team stands shoulder to shoulder with those in huge international companies like BT and EE. To be shortlisted for these prestigious awards is evidence of the hard work they put in every day, ensuring that the information we gather is used to deliver the very best possible service to our customers.”

This is the 6th year of the UK Digital Experience Awards and the first year in which it will be held entirely online. Judging of the finalists is due to take place on Thursday 16 July.



Intelligent Sustainability for homes and businesses thanks to JT’s acquisition of technology automation company Zero1

JT has recently expanded its intelligent engineering and home automation service offering by acquiring Jersey-based company, Zero1. Founded in 2010, Zero1 made its name as a leading designer and supplier of environment and entertainment automation systems for homes and business in the Channel Islands.

Partnering with industry-leading manufacturers and using Jersey’s world-class full-fibre network, Zero1 designs and installs intelligent lighting and shading, security, heating and entertainment systems which fit seamlessly into homes and businesses. As more homes become workplaces and home schools, they need to be capable of running the smart applications and connected devices needed to keep our lives and economy going. Zero1’s tailor-made solutions combined with JT’s world-class fibre network and resources, will support making those places more efficient, comfortable, economic and sustainable.

Daragh McDermott, Managing Director of JT Channel Islands, said: “JT’s purpose is to connect our customers and enable their sustainable future. We have a proven track record in bringing products and services to market before our competitors, and Zero1 provides us with an opportunity to move into the excitingandgrowingworldof‘Smart’,automatedandsustainableliving. Havingoneofthefastest broadband networks in the world, JT and Zero1 can now bring our solutions past the router into homes and businesses, improving sustainability, efficiency, comfort and productivity. Services like this rely on the superior connectivity our fibre network provides and this is just another way of maximizing the potential of our islands network.

“Amongst many benefits of this joining together, will be combining the knowledge and design expertise of Zero1 with the engineering resources and capabilities of JT. For example we can now use green technology to create sustainable buildings that keep track of our energy and water consumption and then decrease it through automation and connectivity. This will reduce environmental impact, contributing to the island’s target to be ‘carbon neutral’ by 2030.”



Manx Telecom - News

National Broadband Plan partner chosen to deliver ultrafast fibre broadband across the Isle of Man

The Department for Enterprise, has awarded Manx Telecom as preferred supplier with designated fibre provider status to deliver the Island’s National Broadband Plan, as outlined in the National Telecoms Strategy, which was unanimously approved by Tynwald in October 2018.

This £10 million contract will see Manx Telecom responsible for the delivery of wholesale ultrafast fibre broadband (FTTP) in nine intervention zones across the Island, these are difficult to reach areas and as a consequence providing high speed broadband services to these locations is likely to be commercially unviable.

Minister for Enterprise, Laurence Skelly MHK, said:

‘As has been witnessed with the current global situation, it is an absolute necessity to have a strong telecoms infrastructure now more than ever, and the Isle of Man Government is determined to support the development of a telecoms infrastructure that is fully inclusive and meets the needs of both businesses and the public, now and into the future.

‘I am delighted to see that the process to rollout the National Broadband Plan will accelerate the delivery of fibre broadband around the Island, continuing to support the businesses and individuals as we adapt and persevere through this rapidly changing situation. This rollout will give the majority of the Island’s residents more opportunity to access fast, reliable internet.

‘It is an absolute necessity to have a strong telecoms infrastructure in our modern society and Manx Telecom has demonstrated it has the experience and capability to deliver the Government’s ambitious target. These improvements to the Island’s fibre broadband will support enhanced online services and align with the Government’s carbon neutrality policy by promoting more widespread remote working, which has been proven over the recent months to be not just required, but essential to the way we work.’

Manx Telecom CEO Gary Lamb added:

“The company has already invested heavily in fibre broadband infrastructure and, by the end of 2019, its fibre network was within reach of 10,000 premises on the Island.

‘We have always supported the expansion of this network as part of our commitment to keep the Isle of Man at the forefront of digital technology and we welcome the opportunity to work with the Isle of Man Government to roll-out fibre to all parts of the Island, including rural areas.

‘The Isle of Man Government has rightly recognised that a world-class telecommunications infrastructure is vital to meet the needs of businesses and the general public, encouraging economic growth and social inclusion. We look forward to working together on this project that will future-proof the Island’s telecoms for years to come and enable us all to take advantage of emerging digital developments.’

The plan, will be completed within five years and deliver a new fibre network passing 99% of residential and business premises with speeds of up to 1Gb/s. 25% of Island properties can already access ultrafast fibre broadband via licensed operators and this award will ensure that the network is rolled out across the Island.



GO Malta

GO Smart Wi-Fi – Guaranteed

Reliable Broadband connectivity in every corner of your home with ‘GO Smart Wi-Fi’- Guaranteed!

 

GO has today launched its latest in a line-up of innovative products – its ‘GO Smart Wi-Fi’, which guarantees top speed broadband in every corner of one’s home. What’s more, this product is offered as part of the ‘Try and Buy’ scheme, where customers can try the product without committing, with the option of returning the product, at no cost, if it does not live up to the customers’ expectations. It also comes with a dedicated App, which also allows parental controls and a host of other user friendly features. On the other hand, by means of a specialised support service, GO can also monitor the health of the Wi-Fi signal remotely and proactively address any issues that may be encountered.

 

Wi-Fi connectivity issues are the source of at least 60% of calls made to telecoms call centres. This is supported by an independent survey which shows that unless broadband speeds are experienced seamlessly across the home, then the customer experience falls short of what the connection is actually capable of. In other words, a strong Wi-Fi connection has become more of a priority than further enhancing broadband speeds.

 

‘We have invested heavily in our TrueFibre network over the years and to date, we remain the only operator that offers TrueFibre up to one’s living room. However, due to a number of factors, which also include house design, in some cases, our customers were not experiencing the full capability of our state-of-the art networks as the speeds reaching their homes, is not necessarily the speeds experienced on their respective devices,’ explained Nikhil Patil, CEO at GO. ‘We now offer a one-stop-shop solution for both broadband and Wi-Fi Service. Our new Wi-Fi pods promise the same internet experience, wherever you are in your house,’ he continued.

 

Talking about the customer experience, Antonio Ivankovic, Chief Commercial Officer at GO explained that GO has focused heavily on this in the past year. ‘We have invested a great amount of time, energy and resources to ensure that we reconnect with our customers, understand their needs and their pain points and address these as efficiently as possible. We recognised that Wi-Fi was an issue and left no stone unturned until we found and deployed a product that is designed well enough to address this reality,’ he explained. ‘We are committed to offer the best customer experience on the island, from the decision to try, all the way through to installation,’ he continued.

 

At a one-time fee of €30 and a monthly subscription of just €2.99 for two pods, this product is well placed to support the demands of remote working and home-schooling in the wake of the covid-19 outbreak and beyond.

 



Sure Joins Fight Against COVID-19

Sure has given a new lease of life to a number of servers, dedicating them to the fight against coronavirus via an online project called [email protected], run by Stanford University.

[email protected] is a crowd-sourced supercomputer carrying out coronavirus protein sequencing to help better understand the virus. Viruses use proteins to suppress immune systems and reproduce themselves. While there are many experimental methods for determining viral protein structures, they only reveal a single snapshot of a protein’s usual shape and do not consider that proteins have lots of moving parts. The protein structures that scientists are unable to see experimentally may be the key to discovering a cure for coronavirus.

As calculations suggest that a coronavirus vaccine could take 18 months to develop, Sure has dedicated some physical servers to the [email protected] software which runs computer simulations to better understand the composition of viral proteins. The telecoms industry has played a critical role in providing connectivity during the lockdown and Sure hopes to contribute further by offering additional resources to [email protected]

Scott Kenyon, security architect at Sure, said: “As a group, we have been working hard to support the community and keep people connected during the coronavirus outbreak. Using some spare server capacity to assist the [email protected] initiative is our way of contributing to the wider fight against coronavirus and we have been running the software for over a month.

“Each simulation that you run is like buying a lottery ticket. The more tickets we buy, the better our chances of hitting the jackpot. For this reason, we have been talking to our engineers to see how we can run as many computer simulations as possible across the group and we would like to encourage the Guernsey community to download the [email protected] software and join the fight.”

To take part in the initiative, islanders will need to download the [email protected] software onto their computer. The software, which can be found on the [email protected] website, then downloads ‘work packages’ and carries them out in the background or when the computer is idle. [email protected] provides the option to be a part of a team and encourage users to rack up simulations together. There are several Guernsey teams however to encourage as many islanders as possible to take part, Sure has created its own team which users can join by simply adding the team number 256994 when installing the software.

Ryan Bourgaize, an engineer at Sure who has spearheaded the company’s involvement, added: “We’re looking forward to seeing the island get involved with [email protected] and hope that by creating a team, the community can feel as though they are doing their part in the pandemic.

“We’re proud to support this initiative as it’s our way of assisting the push towards the light at the end of the tunnel and the end of lockdown. [email protected] is even being supported by Microsoft Azure’s chief technology officer, Mark Russinovich, who recently tweeted that they too have contributed some computers.”

To see how many simulations the Sure team have done so far, visit https://stats.foldingathome.org/team/256994 and for more information on [email protected] visit https://foldingathome.org/covid19/

#SupportingOurCommunity #GuernseyTogether

ENDS

Issued by Emily Chapman, Orchard PR, 01481 251251, [email protected]

Notes to editors:

About Sure

 

www.sure.com

 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SureGuernsey?lang=en

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SureGsy/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/sure-international

 

Headquartered in Guernsey, Sure provides telecommunications and related services across the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man and in the British Overseas Territories of Ascension, Falklands, Saint Helena and Diego Garcia.

Sure provides fixed voice, mobile, broadband and Cloud services in the Channel Islands and Isle of Man. In the British Overseas Territories, Sure operates under exclusive licences with full-feature networks delivering voice, broadband data services and, in certain markets, TV.

The corporate division of the business, Sure International, specialises in offshore connectivity, enabling those companies that operate in the islands to reliably and efficiently connect and transact with their global partners.

Sure’s approach to business is based on its values of simplicity, trust, one team and customer-driven. The last of these values has resulted in annual multi-million-pound investments to provide customers with the best and latest services to meet their needs.

Customer experience is at the heart of Sure’s approach and the company was found to have the most satisfied customers in the Channel Islands in a 2018 study carried out by the independent regulator in the islands. In the Isle of Man, Sure was rated the best overall network (Source: a Sure-commissioned independent study carried out by Systemics group, 2017).

Sure is a member of the Batelco Group, a leading telecommunications provider to 14 markets spanning the Middle East & Northern Africa, Europe and the South Atlantic and Indian Ocean.



We’re allocating 20.8 million euros to issues related with the COVID-19 pandemic

The company is introducing a discount on telecommunications services for vulnerable families

Andorra la Vella, 7 May 2020

In March and April, Andorra Telecom issued discounts to companies worth €812,559 as part of the Government’s plan to support the productive fabric of society during the coronavirus crisis. The 20 million from company reserves used by the state to cover additional costs associated with the COVID-19 pandemic need to be added to this figure.

Andorra Telecom’s total contribution is 20.8 million euros, which added to the 10.7 from FEDA brings the combined contribution by the two companies to 31.5 million euros.

This was announced during the joint appearance of the Minister for Regional Planning, Jordi Torres, and the Minister for Environment and Sustainability, Sílvia Calvó, who chair the boards of directors of Andorra Telecom and FEDA respectively.

Torres also reported on the discounts on telecommunications services that Andorra Telecom will be applying to families who are in a situation of social and economic vulnerability, in compliance with the agreement soon to be signed with the Ministry of Social Affairs.

Social Discounts

Andorra Telecom will offer a 15% discount on the 300 Mbps fibre optic service, the landline call plan and up to two XS rate mobiles. Added to the contribution from the Ministry of Social Affairs, “it can cover up to 50 of the 60 euros that the average family consumes in telecommunications without including the TV service”, said Torres. In the event of non-payment by families who have had assistance allocated to them, the service won’t be terminated, and the costs will be assumed by the Government.

As for the temporary discounts applied during the months of March and April, a total of 5,477 companies and self-employed people have benefited, receiving a 100 percent discount in case of a total suspension of activity, and 80 percent when the stoppage has only been partial. The economic impact on the company was €282,544 in March, when the measure was applied in the middle of the month, and €530,015 in April.

Other economic measures adopted have been an up to 12-month interest free payment holiday, an option that has been taken up by 186 companies, and the cessation of measures against non-payment.



GO Malta

The Power of Connectivity

The Power of Connectivity.
GO at the very heart of the community, keeping people and businesses connected, and its role in the Covid19 pandemic

 

It’s been six weeks since Covid-19 first hit our shores. It’s been weeks of surreal and unprecedented changes forced onto the Maltese community. Amidst the flurry of activity, some businesses have completely overhauled their operations to set up for remote working, investing hundreds and thousands of euros of unplanned resources to adjust to this new reality. Other businesses have had to close their doors, and with that, many have lost their livelihoods, whilst others have taken some time out to rethink their future. Families have taken on a whole new juggling act, quickly and often shifting between working from home, parenting, home schooling and getting the next meal on the table. Others have had to move out of the family home to ensure the ones they love remain safe and healthy. We have all been impacted in one way or another but one thing we keep seeing and feeling is how important it is for us all to stay connected.

 

As people have been pushed into isolation, technology has been the one driving force that has kept the whole community connected. People are working from home, some businesses have moved online, schools have gone from physical to virtual classrooms, and video chats have swiftly replaced social meetings and gatherings. This notwithstanding, many service providers, including telecommunication companies are considered as essential, and therefore are required to continue offering services, many times with customer facing employees still very active in the community.

 

‘At GO we have been preparing for this new reality before the first case was recorded in Malta. As a company, we are privileged to have such a critical role in society, especially during such difficult times. Our services allow people to remain connected to the people they care for, to continue to enjoy countless hours of entertainment from the safety of their homes, whilst having all the necessary means to face the current challenges as comfortably, and sustainably as possible. Our services have allowed many businesses to be agile enough to set up remotely and continue with their operations with as minimal disruption as possible,’ said Nikhil Patil, CEO at GO plc.

 

‘GO was one of the very first companies that started detailed contingency planning well before the pandemic reached Malta. This allowed us to act fast in line with recommendations from health authorities and Government. We have a huge responsibility to our employees and their families, to customers and to the community in general – a responsibility we take incredibly seriously. We cannot serve our customers and ensure service continuity unless our workforce is well protected,’ continued Nikhil.

 

Employee safety and wellbeing took top priority from the get go. GO ensured that any member of its workforce that could work remotely, had the necessary means to do so. The call centre was mobilised and is now operating from all corners of the island. Within days, most of the organisation was working efficiently from home. Frontline employees were equipped with all the necessary safety gear and training required for them to carry out their duties safely and responsibly and processes were adapted accordingly. Retail outlets were decked with perspex screens and are deep cleansed and fumigated weekly. As the situation evolved, GO also offered alternative accommodation and extended subsidies for those front line employees who live with vulnerable individuals, and whom are also critical for service continuity.

 

‘As a company, we have done everything we possibly can to keep our employees safe, protected and connected with each other, through regular check ins, online mental and physical wellbeing initiatives and others aimed at connecting them on matters beyond business,’ explained Sarah Camilleri, Head of HR. ‘One cannot underestimate the complexities that a large company like GO faces. However we have stood up to the challenge, kept employees updated with everything that we have been doing and continue to do in the fight against covid19. I really feel that GO has clearly demonstrated that connectivity can surpass most boundaries,’ she continued.

 

Fighting this pandemic is a collective effort. It is only by doing our individual parts that one can minimise the spread as much as possible and overcome the challenges that it brought about. In an organisation like GO, where personal interaction is the order of the day, practicing social distancing is a challenge in itself.

 

‘We feel the pain and understand the challenges just like everyone else. We understand how disruptive the pandemic has been to businesses because we have lived it ourselves. This allowed us to develop bespoke solutions for our many business customers in a bid to assist them face these challenging times. We also appreciate that social distancing does not mean emotional or psychological distancing. The very nature of our business helps us, and others, manage this situation by overcoming the physical barriers through communications technology,’ said Nikhil.

 

‘We have gone above and beyond to help the community stay connected. It is in times like these that our purpose and values are put to the test. Over the years, GO has been in the drivers’ seat in ensuring a truly digital Malta and the past few weeks have been a real showcase of what we do best – keeping Malta connected and leaving no one behind in the process,’ continued Nikhil.

 

In an effort to encourage people to stay home, GO opened up its premium channels to all its customers, offering thousands of hours of rich TV content from movies to series on its GO Stars channel or through its On-Demand platform. It also offered free access to its TV App to everyone, even those that are not GO customers. To date, close to 6000 non-GO customers are enjoying live TV, movies and series on demand, over this App. This offer is still open. Individuals simply apply for the credentials for the APP through GO’s website.

 

For those individuals whose lives have been completely disrupted by Covid-19, who are at the very front line fighting this fight and are at most risk of contracting the virus, GO extended 1000 free minutes and 100GB of mobile data so that they can stay connected to family and friends. These include doctors and nurses and other medical staff at the very front line, as well as those in the civil protection department, including the police force, armed forces and firefighters. This offer is ongoing until the worst of the pandemic is over. GO also ensured that those customers stranded in travel banned countries had sufficient means of keeping in touch with family with peace of mind by additional credit or discounts on their respective bills.

 

‘In these difficult circumstances, we all have a collective responsibility towards the country and to each other. We have done all that is reasonably possible to ensure that no one is left behind during this crisis, which is impacting businesses in all sectors, including ours. This means that we have to allocate our resources responsibly and efficiently, especially in view of the lack of visibility as to how long this crisis will last,’ explained Nikhil.

 

In addition to ensuring that its employees, customers and community remained safe and connected, GO also had to ensure the resiliency of its networks and infrastructure in view of increased traffic. In the past month, GO has experienced an all-time record high of traffic on all its networks, with traffic on its mobile network increasing by more than 50%, whilst that on its fixed telephony network has more than doubled.

‘We have invested over 240 million Euros in our network over the past 10 years to ensure it is resilient enough to cope for such demand. We have committed a further 100 million to the roll-out of TrueFibre technology to every household in the next four years. This is when the real investment we have made in our infrastructure will start to pay off. It would be naïve of me to say that these circumstances are not a test on our infrastructure or our products because they are.  We have indeed noticed record traffic levels over the past few weeks. However, despite the measures we had to implement in relatively short order, the fact that we had to continue to service our customers with a reduced workforce whilst maintaining service quality, and at the same time, shifting many of our services online, we have not experienced marked degradation in actual service,’ said Nikhil.

GO can confirm that it has remained vigilant in its efforts to ensure that the network continues to operate well. In fact, it has increased capacity in areas such as Mater Dei and Boffa Hospitals and other high usage areas to relieve potential congestion.

The outbreak of Covid19 also meant revisiting some of GO’s processes in order to cater for emerging requirements as the situation evolved. As it shifted many of its business processes online, GO also strengthened its online and digital teams to complement its call centre services.

‘Customers can connect with our agents, purchase new products, upgrade or top up their services, pay bills and make use of a host of other services from the comfort and safety of their homes. We have invested heavily in our online and digital platforms over the past few months and we strongly encourage people to use them, especially during these times when we collectively need to respect social distancing rules,’ he explained. ‘We understand and appreciate that not everyone may be equally digitally savvy but our agents are there to help with whatever our customers need’.

Covid19 has taken everyone by storm and will undoubtedly leave a mark on everyone’s life.

 

‘I am always proud of GO and what we do, but it is in moments like these that I am reminded of how incredibly privileged we are to have such an important role in Maltese society – of how our work keeps people connected, of how we do everything in our power so that no one is left behind. Do we do everything perfectly? Definitely not. Are we fully prepared for what lies ahead? Possibly. But one thing I can confidently agree to, is our commitment to do better and to do right by our customers,’ concluded Nikhil.



Sure Network Resilience

Sure sees a 45% increase in home broadband usage since lockdown

Sure continues to play a critical role in providing connectivity for the community, with a 45% increase in home broadband traffic seen since the States of Guernsey announced the lockdown on 24 March.

With many islanders required to work or study from home and practice social distancing, Sure has reported a dramatic increase in home broadband traffic from an average usage of 51GB a week to 74GB a week per household. The community is also staying in touch over the phone regularly, with calls on mobile phones doubling during the lockdown period.

Sure has seen 1,100 customers apply for the free upgrade from the basic to standard home broadband service which has doubled customer speed from an average of 16Mbps to 34 Mbps until 30 June.

Despite a huge increase in demand and a dramatic change in home broadband consumption, Sure’s network has met the increased demand and continues to have spare capacity. Prior to the lockdown, peak hours for home broadband were between 5pm and 11pm as people returned from school and work and went online at home. Sure’s network usage data has revealed that the hours of high traffic volume have spread out across the day from 10am until 11pm. According to the data, the demand for home broadband has also increased in the evening during lockdown as islanders stay in touch with their loved ones using the internet instead of face-to-face contact and watch popular TV streaming services.



Andorra Telecom strengthens connectivity to guarantee that companies can operate remotely

The sales agency will open for essential business only with a restricted morning schedule and with strict limitations on the number of customers

Andorra la Vella, 15 March 2020

Improvements to the Internet network, international connections and the strengthening of mobile telephone services guarantee an increase in traffic due to teleworking and the intensive domestic consumption resulting from the application of measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Investments made in recent years have scaled up the size of the network to cope with future needs. “We are currently equipped to handle consumption at twice the rate of the maximums recorded during peak hours. This guarantees that families can simultaneously work from their homes while connected to their companies, use messaging applications and social networks, watch fibre optic TV or use audiovisual content platforms such as Movistar Multi-Devices, Netflix or YouTube”, said Jordi Nadal, the company’s Managing Director.

The structure of the Internet network has been expanded to 70 GB, while the external output is guaranteed with connections of up to 30 GB with both France and Spain.

Mobile telephone services have also been enhanced with the increase in the speed of the 4G mobile network to 1Gbps in Andorra la Vella, Escaldes-Engordany and Pas de la Casa, a capacity that ensures intensive use during periods of maximum tourist influx.

Security Protocols

Following the recommendations of the health authorities, Andorra Telecom has redefined its internal protocols, favouring teleworking for its employees, physically separating work teams and conducting all work meetings and contacts with suppliers and third-party companies via video conferencing. The arrangement provides for a total of 70 people, including field technicians, to be permanently on duty. All of these actions are intended to guarantee the continuity of a service as fundamental as telecommunications.

The special arrangement resulting from the COVID-19 containment measures also affects the customer service channels, where it has been taken very much into account that communications are an essential public service. The sales agency will restrict its schedule to 8:30 am to 3:30 pm, and will limit activity to providing support on essential connectivity related issues that cannot be dealt with through non-presential channels.