Information sheets > buyers guides & basics

introductory guides to fixed line and mobile phones, office telephone systems and the Internet

Business efficiency from mobile communications

by Kingston inbusiness

As mobile phones become increasingly important in our business lives, Kingston inbusiness looks at the ways in which you can make your company's mobiles more efficient and cost effective.
Keeping control over the costs of company mobile phones can be a tricky business. As businesses have ... >>

business email applications and services

by Crucible Multimedia

Electronic mail, or e-mail, is by far the most popular use of Internet-based technology and is a fast cheap and convenient way of communicating, both externally and within a company. Used properly it can help you and your business to work smarter and not harder.
What do I need to send e-... >>

Business Internet connection web hosting and services - buyer's guide

by Crucible Multimedia

The basic equipment needed to access the Internet is a computer and a modem for dial-up or router for broadband. A PC or Mac (PCs are generally better supported with cheaper software and peripherals), preferably less than 2-3 years old, will do the job – most will have a modem, otherwise ... >>

Business mobile communications

by John Tyreman, Mason Communications

Mobile communications are a useful way of keeping in touch with customers and suppliers - and even your own office. But communications on the move can be much more than the mobile phone. In this information sheet we set out the main types of mobile service available, highlighting the key featur... >>

Buyer's guide to business mobile phones and services

by Crucible Multimedia

A mobile phone service usually comes as a package, made up of the handset(s) and access to a network. There are five mainstream mobile phone networks in the UK - O2, T-Mobile, Orange, Vodafone and most recently "3". All now have a growing third generation broadband network which can support mobi... >>

'Carrier pre-selection' (CPS) consumer guide - July 2002

by Oftel

Improving your choice
The UK has a very competitive market in telecommunications.
You may already have a choice of who supplies a phone line to your home.
If you have a BT line, you can also make calls using one of the many other phone companies. You can do this by either:
... >>

Dolphin Telecom

by Colin Bryant, TelecomsAdvice

editors note: Dolphin went in to administration at the end of August 2001 and the brand was taken over by Inquam. However, the network was eventually closed down in October 2004.
Reviewed January 2011
... >>

Fixed landline business telecommunications services

by Crucible Multimedia

A "fixed line" telephone, also known as a landline, is a standard telephone used over the "wired" telephone network. 
How do I choose a service provider?
The public telephone network was operated by British Telecom until 1984, when the industry was opened up to competition. T... >>

Getting connected to the Internet

by Crucible Multimedia

There are several ways of connecting to the Internet, from a simple dial-up link using a standard telephone line to faster and "always on" connections using a leased line, ISDN, ADSL, ‘cable’, satellite, terrestrial fixed and mobile wireless. The faster the connection the greater its ... >>

Grants for Broadband

by Colin Bryant, TelecomsAdvice

Grants are available to SMEs in several areas of the UK. Applicants should contact the organisations involved. Please let us know about any funding schemes which are not listed.
‘Rabbit’ is a joint project by several Regional Development Agencies and Devolved adminis... >>

How to choose a business broadband provider

by Carlo Soresina, Bulldog Communications

Carlo Soresina, sales & marketing director, business, Bulldog Communications
Broadband internet is a necessity for a 21st century business - whether it’s to support management of customer information or the delivery mechanism for products. Fewer and fewer businesses try to get... >>

Improving Internet connectivity with ISDN, ADSL, cable, broadband and mobile broadband

by Crucible Multimedia

Once you have been using a dial-up Internet connection for a while you may find that it is useful but the connection and download speeds are frustrating and decide it is time to upgrade.
The initial connection to your Internet Service Provider (ISP) could be faster. Once you're connected... >>

indirect access telecoms service

by Redstone Telecom

Having a choice of telecoms operators is important in business, especially in the small business sector where cost savings are crucial. Where there is greater choice, managers can use that choice to save money.
Much has changed over the last few years in the telecoms industry and the big... >>

Internet business applications

by Crucible Multimedia

The Internet is an international network of computer systems that talk to each other using a defined communications protocol - Internet Protocol (IP), allowing users to access facilities such as e-mail and the World Wide Web (WWW).
E-mail, or electronic mail, is a facility th... >>

Introduction to security and virus protection

by Colin Bryant, TelecomsAdvice

So-called computer viruses are mini software programs which spread from computer to computer without the permission of the authorised computer administrator. They may be harmless pranks which can be easily disabled and removed, malicious attacks designed to damage or disrupt a particular system... >>

Introduction to telecoms terms and technologies

by Crucible Multimedia

The telecoms world seems to be crowded with a confusing set of acronyms and technical jargon, which may mean nothing to you and can be difficult to differentiate.
In this information sheet we give a brief overview of some of the technologies and terms you are most likely to come across u... >>

ISDN vs. standard phone line?

by Crucible Multimedia

There is a growing choice of technologies for business telecoms and Internet provision, ranging from using a standard telephone line and dial-up Internet access to installing a leased line. Why should you consider using ISDN instead of the ordinary telephone network? 
The choice between ... >>

ISDN, ADSL, cable, broadband and mobile telecoms services availability

by Crucible Multimedia

The Oftel Small Business Task Force encourages telecoms operators to include details of service availability on their websites.
The following links are designed to help you check which services available in your area.
BT ISDN and ADSL availability check - searches for av... >>

local loop unbundling (LLU)

by Oftel

The local loop is the part of the telecom network closest to a consumer's premises. It consists of a pair of copper wires that run from the customer's site to the local telephone exchange.
What is unbundling?
With 6500 local exchanges and millions of consumers, BT operates the majo... >>

Network security for small businesses

by Kingston inbusiness

The very fact that you rely on Information Technology to run your business could actually put your business at risk. The media is full of computer crime stories involving hackers, viruses, industrial espionage and fraud. So what can you do to protect your business, its infrastructure and inform... >>

networking an Internet connection with a router

by Crucible Multimedia

If you want to network your Internet connection, that is share it with several computers in an office, there are several things you should be aware of.
You can use Microsoft Internet Connection Sharing to network your dial-up ISDN connection over a LAN, but it has limitations in terms of... >>

Non-geographic numbers win new business

by Colin Bryant, TelecomsAdvice

The telephone is a tried and tested way for customers to enquire about your products or services, but there are ways to encourage people to call your business first and give you that vital competitive edge.
Whether it is a number that is easy to remember, a free phone call or simply a n... >>

Office of the Telecoms Ombudsman - otelo

by otelo

This page has been replaced by - please update your bookmarks. ... >>

Office telephone systems - buyer's guide

by John Tyreman, Mason Communications

The Oftel Small Business Task Force has developed this quick buyer's guide to help you get the best deal when buying or upgrading your telephone system.
Identify what your business telecoms needs are
To help potential suppliers to give you a firm quote, first assess:
how... >>

Oftel now Ofcom complaints for telecommunications and Internet, communications by the Ombudsman (Otelo) or (CISAS) Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) services

by Colin Bryant, TelecomsAdvice

Ofcom requires all telecommunications operators to belong to an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) scheme. It will advise on the process and monitor complaints but then refers complaints from individual consumers and small businesses (not more than 10 employees) to two external independent bod... >>

Overview of Mobile Data Technology

by Orange

WAP, or Wireless Application Protocol, has been developed to bring Internet content to mobile phones and other wireless devices. This means that users can easily access Web-based interactive information services and applications from their mobile phones or PDAs (Personal Digital Assis... >>

personal mobile phones best buys and cheap deals

by Colin Bryant, TelecomsAdvice

Go direct to mobile phone supplier links! Buying mobile phones - warnings! - applicable to any supplier:... >>

SME small businesses advice and grant assistance

by Crucible Multimedia

In this information sheet we highlight some of the key resources on the Web that aim to help small businesses to do business online.
Government initiatives to help small businesses 
Technology means business, managed by the Institute of Management, also offers advice to busin... >>

Telecom brokers

by Mike Wills, Backbone (UK) Ltd

Telecom brokers are relative newcomers to the telecoms market. In essence, like any other type of broker, they identify the best deal for a customer's requirements. The customer signs up with the broker and receives any bills direct from them. Brokers buy millions of minutes of talk-time from v... >>

VoIP, Voice over Internet Protocol and Internet telephone calls

by Crucible Multimedia

The increased availability and use of broadband Internet connections has created increased interest in VoIP and Internet telephony - after all, if you have an always-on connection to the Internet for a fixed cost then telephone calls over it would be free wouldn't they? Well yes - but.... there ... >>

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