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IP EXPO Manchester Polling Results

IP EXPO Manchester Polling Results

The future of the connected workplace looks bright

Last month we exhibited at IP EXPO Manchester. It provided a great opportunity to speak to many of you and get involved in industry discussions around future tech.

Whilst at the event we conducted a poll to find out how you see workplace technology impacting your lives in the next five to ten years. The top 3 findings are below.

1. 77 per cent of delegates polled would like gigabit internet connections

When it comes to the technologies which attendees expect to see in the workplace by 2025, the most popular was gigabit internet connectivity, with 77 per cent of those polled looking forward to superfast speeds. This did not come as a surprise, given that future workplace technology such as Unified Communications, for example, will require increased bandwidth.

The next three most popular pieces of office technology were:

  • Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) assistants (52 per cent)
  • Telepresence robots (50 per cent)
  • Virtual Reality (47 per cent)

While the likes of Microsoft's Cortana and Amazon's Alexa are already available to business users, with another 8 years of development these assistants will become extremely powerful and will likely also require a gigabit connection to work at their fullest. Telepresence robots are already rolling around some businesses, but with a superfast connection these devices will be able to transmit a 4K image, making them even more useful.

Virtual Reality (VR) can be accessed through a mobile phone, but for a live VR video stream or some of the more advanced applications like 3D modelling, a high-speed connection will also be necessary.

2. 50 per cent polled believe face-to-face meetings will reduce

With the rise of collaborative tools and apps like Skype, Slack and MiCollab, there is the potential for face-to-face meetings to become a thing of the past.

Why would you travel for four hours when you can effectively communicate and work remotely with the right tools? 8 per cent of those polled see the possibility and believe that within five years' face to face meetings will be obsolete and 50 per cent of those polled thought the technology would reduce the number of face-to-face meetings they had.

3. 71 per cent see an increase in work-life flexibility

The positive benefits of technology were felt when it came to workplace flexibility and remote working. No surprise that 71 per cent felt that technology will increase flexibility in their work life and 61 per cent believed that they would be able to work from any location in the next five years. With wireless connectivity increasing and remote working becoming more of a possibility with portable business devices, office workers appear to look forward to less reliance on being in the office to get work done. With increasing commute times and the cost of travel and car ownership also on the up, this is a trend many view positively.

The general atmosphere at IP EXPO Manchester was optimistic and it is great to see that office workers have a big desire for the future connected workplace. Business networking teams will need to ensure they are able to provision the networks that will support this technologically advanced future and we are looking forward to supporting businesses of all sizes as they adopt new ways of working.

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