5 tips for controlling the cost of Unified Comms on your mobile device

by Liz Edwards for blog, EMM

blog-7Working outside of the fixed office has never been easier with the ubiquity of smart devices, the availability of superfast connectivity, and a diverse range of collaboration tools like VoIP, instant messaging, video and desktop sharing. However, employer beware, there are associated mobile data consumption issues with all of these tools.

Undoubtedly enterprises are benefiting from the increased efficiencies that these Unified Communications and Collaboration (UCC) tools have created for desk-bound and mobile workforces. However, CFOs and cost control managers need to carefully monitor and manage the costs associated with accessing data across the network, particularly for the mobile workforce.

#adrianweckler wrote in the Irish Independent about UCC applications, such as email, instant messaging and video, now being used by a majority of Irish people. Ireland’s regulator, Comreg, estimates that the average Irish person is now using almost twice as much monthly data as last year. And this can lead to bill shock. This can be a huge (and very expensive) problem, but not just for consumers, it also has implications for the enterprise. I take a look below at some of the data costs incurred when using these UCC apps but also how you can keep your mobile data costs down when using UCC.

How much would a one hour meeting cost?

In all of the examples below we assume that you have exceeded your mobile data allowance. Some operators are charging up to €1 per megabyte for data used over the mobile data allowance (known as overages).

How much mobile data does skype use?

Info source: superuser.com: Skype-to-Skype: 50kbps or around 3MB for one minute of calling. Calls to landlines or mobile numbers: 6-20 kbps or around 1MB for one minute of calling. You are looking at approximately 3.75 MB for a video call between two mobile devices for 1 minute.

The cost for a one hour call would be: €180 for a skype to skype call. €60 for a call to landline, and €225 for a video call.

How much data does a WhatsApp call use?

The information from TechTimes: A one minute call made on WhatsApp costs users nearly 800 KB worth of high-speed 4G LTE.

The cost of a one hour call would be: €48 for a WhatsApp call.

How much data does GoToMeeting use?

The information from GoToMeeting: A 45 minute screen share session with remote keyboard and mouse control at 4G (no LTE) took 65.6 MB.

he cost of a one hour call: €87 for a screen share session.

Tips on how to keep mobile data costs down when using UCC

Mobile carriers offer different plans, so the costs above may vary depending on your mobile data package. Take the time to calculate how much it would cost you.

General guidance for using UCC tools on your mobile device are:

  1. Always use a WiFi connection where possible (making sure you don’t fall off the WiFi!)
  2. Even if you have an all you can eat bundle, check if video and desktop sharing is included in the “fair usage policy”
  3. Limit internet access speeds (making video and desktop sharing unusable)
  4. Control access — permit or deny access certain website or apps
  5. Restrict usage of certain apps to a limit each month

Why not have a read of our White Paper on how to Manage the spend of your mobile workforce.

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