Unified Communications (UC) has grown hugely in the past few years as more and more of us work on the move, with the need for greater collaboration and communication becoming paramount for many businesses.
But how exactly does that work when your business travels to a different location dotted around the world every two weeks, and needs real-time analysis of huge amounts of complex data to boot?
Red Bull Racing are one of the world’s leading Formula One teams, but the challenges of keeping the team connected at race weekends around the globe mean that they need a strong and reliable comms platform to support this.
The team has been working with AT&T for the past six years, with the US telecoms giant providing a wealth of communications services that means wherever the team ends up, they will be online and connected back to their base in Milton Keynes thanks to a suite of UC tools including instant messaging, IP-based phone services, telepresence, and video conferencing.
2017 marks a huge change for Formula One, with new regulations dramatically changing the look and feel of the cars for fans and drivers alike, but also posing major difficulties for the team.
“It's been very much a redesign of the car from the ground up to conform with the new regulations,” Al Peasland, Red Bull Racing’s head of technical partnerships, told ITProPortal at the recent UC Expo event in London.
“This means that when you go to the first test of the season, and even the first races...you're trying to gather as much information as possible about this whole new vehicle."
"You have to understand the baseline before you build on it,” he adds, "sometimes too much information can be too much...we only want to measure things that have value."
With just 12 days of testing available pre- and during the season, getting all the data from the millions of sensors equipped on an F1 car collected and analysed as quickly as possible could be the difference between winning and losing.
And in such a hugely competitive sport, making sure such important data remains secure is another major priority - with every tenth of a second counting.
To ensure this, AT&T provides Red Bull Racing employee mobile devices with an EMM (Enterprise Mobility Management) solution that enables engineers to exchange highly secure crucial race information directly with the factory using their smartphones or tablets.
AT&T provides a dedicated service team that works with Red Bull Racing at each race of the F1 season, taking in locations from Azerbaijan to Japan and Mexico, and Peasland is effusive about the working relationship between the two companies.
"There's been a constant evolution and steady growth,” he notes, “the importance of the technology is paramount with the new regulations."
"It's something we're very proud of - with all our technology partners, we like to forge long-standing relationships...it's testament to the fact that we believe in the technology."