so often, I travel for non-business purposes. Twice this year I took along my
laptop and phone so I could be in constant contact with work and family during
the quiet times. On both trips, I found things I’d never seen before.
a tiny hotel room (and I mean tiny) that I shared with my wife in Copenhagen,
Denmark there was this tiny little sign.
read the tiny sign, with the cute tiny flying elephant, and then it dawned on
me. There was no phone in the room. Imagine that. Pay phones have disappeared from street corners and airports, but this was a first for me--no landline in a
hotel room. This hotel was assuming everyone has a mobile phone, and the
ubiquitous room phone was just cluttering their rooms and gathering dust.
with a little marketing spin – about loving to speak with their guests
face-to-face - they succeeded in reducing costs and freeing up some space in
their oh-so-tiny guest rooms. The good news is I always had good coverage for
also spent four days in London this spring with my eldest daughter who had
planned the entire trip around seeing an obscure English comedian that we both
enjoy. We visited many attractions and many pubs. We ventured into one pub
solely for the purpose of participating in the venerable “pub quiz”, which we
lost miserably, but were respectable as the only “Americans” brave enough to
enter. As we were both taking a moment to reconnect with the outside world
(i.e. on our phones), a gentleman seated next to us commented that he knew a place
where we couldn’t do that. Another pub – but a special one in East Sussex,
outside of London, called the Gin Tub.
particular pub doesn’t suggest that you stay off your mobile phone, or politely
ask you to turn it off, or even take your phones away when you enter the
establishment. Instead, they created an environment where your phone simply
doesn’t work. Using metal foil and copper mesh, the owners turned the entire
place into a giant Faraday
cage, blocking all RF signals in or out, literally forcing people to talk
to one another. Perhaps they are also preventing anyone from Googling answers during
their quiz. Brilliant! The owner raves about the renewed and vibrant atmosphere
– it is now a destination location.
what did I take away from these two things? Solid mobile coverage in the
building is expected--period. People depend on it. You might even call it a
“necessary evil”. Two different reactions to this trend are highlighted here
though – each equally valid in its own right. One business adapts and reduces
cost; the other rebels and embraces a counter-culture; however, both are finding
ways to profit from the new reality.
can provide everything businesses need to provide solid mobile coverage to their
employees, customers, and anyone who enters their facilities. If they ever
decide to allow cell phones, we can even help the Gin Tub be ready for special