Maintaining office collaboration within a business requires the quick processing and exchange of documents.

An office not only requires a plan to schedule tasks within the printing department but also requires efficient office equipment throughout the workplace to process documents quickly. As with many businesses, there isn’t much time to dedicate to order output or the improvement of services offered to customers.

That’s why many businesses could benefit by switching to Fujitsu scanners – they improve the workflow of offices and reduce the time spent on tasks within an office. Before businesses upgrade scanners or decide to sell current equipment, there are a few market comparisons to review.

The Differences Between Epson and Fujitsu Scanners

Businesses depend on quality scanners, printers, and fax machines to file and exchange documents for customer orders. The diverse range of office equipment on the market makes the selection process difficult since each printer manufacturer offers different technological advantages.

Here are a few of the differences between the Fujitsu and Epson scanners:

  • Corporate History: Since 1975, Epson’s successes in the industry have come from the creation of micro-processed and precision wrist technology, while Fujitsu’s advancement in innovative information and telecommunication technology started since 1935. As time progressed, both companies transitioned into developing advanced office equipment we use today.
  • Current Technological Vision: Today, Fujitsu realizes that more retailers require human-friendly interfaces to keep up with a continuously changing consumer base, and therefore, aim to help businesses speed up tasks with productive office equipment. Epson, however, notices an expansion of information available in the cyberspace and plans to continue expanding their products to adapt to the diversity of business document scans.

As we can tell, each company develops its new scanner models to serve a completely different type of market. If businesses want to focus on improving productivity in the workspace, they may want to choose Fujitsu products to increase document output.

4 Types of Fujitsu Scanners That Improve Office Workflow

How does Fujitsu scanning equipment transform the office space and help businesses achieve better overall customer satisfaction? Here are four types of scanners that make up the Fujitsu product lineup.

1. Workgroup Scanners

Fujitsu workgroup scanners are made for single or medium-sized office departments. There are two types of workgroup scanners – flatbed and sheet-fed models, which allow office workers to scan a variety of documents and upload them to emails across the department. The average speed of these printers reaches 60 to 80 pages per minute.

2. Departmental Scanners

Larger organizations that require higher throughput of digital images or media choose departmental scanners. These scanners come in either sheet-fed or flatbed models, which scan up to 100 pages per minute for faster document scanning.

3. Production Scanners

Companies that require around 100,000 scans per day may choose the production scanners to get the best overall efficiency. Production scanners include compatibility for scans of plastic or embossed cards and feature paper image clean-up.

4. Network Scanners

Fujitsu’s network scanners make sharing documents between departments and staff more efficient. Users can load their materials in the scanners, log into the network, select a recipient, and press a scan button to share information quickly.

The Epson Comparison to Current Scanner Models

While the current Fujitsu peripheral scanners offer features such as ScanSnap (one-touch document imaging) and complimentary software, Epson scanners currently don’t offer as many model styles to compensate for different business structures. Some companies have a very expansive scanning department, while others may only need to send copies to a few retail clerks. Fujitsu offers a variety of scanners for each office infrastructure.

As each Epson scanner model increases in price, the significant differences seem to be within the quality of prints rather than the speed of scans. Even the low-end models can crank out a useful 60 pages per minute. Of course, companies may choose a high-end Epson scanner for their diversity of scan styles and improved quality, but there is less choice in how to share documents across a company. When it comes to productivity and workflow, it’s those details that matter.

Which Type of Scanner Should Companies Choose?

Do you have difficulty choosing a scanner that matches your company profile and office environment? It may be time to conduct a few observations of how workers process and share scans. A scanner’s sharing features can make all the difference when it comes to increasing productivity and improving collaboration between every department.

Smile Business Products understands that not all companies require the same scan output or sharing methods. Contact us today to get expert consultation on choosing the right type of scanner for a business, so the workflow in each department stays on top of order demand.




Printers are an essential component of busy office spaces, but when they run out of ink or experience a paper jam, print production comes to a screeching halt. Most businesses believe that there is no way to reduce the overall cost of printer supplies and maintenance. However, with a printer repair service, companies can reduce the total cost of restocking printer supplies and speed up the refill process. While waiting for repairmen to arrive, you can pass the time on sites such as 먹튀.

In this article, we’ll explore the challenges faced by print production offices today, and how to reduce office overhead with a printer maintenance plan, also known as a Managed Print Services.

What Are the Printing Challenges of Offices Today?

While nearly 90% of companies don’t track their printing costs, documents can account for around 5% of total business revenue. Considering the additional business activity lost due to printer maintenance delays, the average productivity in offices may drop significantly. That’s why many businesses are looking for a printer repair service that manages print supplies and repairs.

With a MPS, a business can request the following services:

  • Printer upgrade recommendations and installation
  • Resupply toner or printer equipment
  • Service or repair printers
  • Ask for assistance with printer maintenance or settings

Delays and errors are common in busy printing departments. The demand for reliable print production is what causes many businesses to seek help from a managed printer repair service.

5 Ways a Printer Repair Service Improves Office Savings

How do offices benefit from hiring a printer repair service? Here are five benefits of hiring a printer maintenance team.

1. Get the Best Recommendations on Printers

Quality office printers pay for themselves in print production rate, energy savings, quality, and material consumption. In case a business wants to replace their printer, copier, or fax machine, printer repair services offer the best recommendations for office printers available.

Choose from some of the leading brands in office printers such as Sharp, Lexmark, and Epson. Upgrade to a printer that produces upwards of 30 pages per minute, offers multiple office equipment functionalities, and conveniently manage files directly from a cloud-integrated storage system.

2. Save on Printer Supplies

A printer repair service also provides a comprehensive printer supply service. Get automatic meter collection and toner refills when you sign up for all-inclusive maintenance programs.

Upon a routine service request, technicians may check overall office equipment to ensure their working order and automatically replenish low printer supplies. The printer maintenance service selects the most cost-effective materials each time they restock printer supplies.

3. Replace Broken Printers or Parts

Suspect that a printer component has irreversible damage? A printer repair service can check the status of printer parts, diagnose damage, and reinstall new parts. Printer technicians carry a variety of printer parts with them on each call, so less time is spent retrieving the correct part.

Besides repairing individual parts, a printer repair service can also diagnose and replace a complete copier, printer, scanner, or fax machine upon inspection. Offices may choose from a range of quality office equipment at an affordable price and receive expert recommendations for replacements.

4. Fast Printer Maintenance

When an office worker calls a printer maintenance service, factory-trained technicians arrive at the location to troubleshoot and repair any printer problems. The issues fixed may include paper jams, setting errors, mechanical repairs, or computer network malfunctions that relate to printers.

Printer repair technicians know how to work with Sharp, Lexmark, HP, and many other popular office printer models. That means offices experience less maintenance downtime and get the correct fix for any printer model, each time.

5. Help Desk for Printer-Related Inquiries

Are simple printer errors the source of significant delays in office production? Many different error codes pop up on printer displays, and most of them are easy to fix without an on-site technician. An IT Help Desk can help offices bypass simple printer errors, so workers can continue their work without waiting for the repair service to arrive.

IT department help desks can also remotely diagnose and fix computer issues within minutes, while a worker can watch and figure out the source of a problem.

Get All-in-One Printer Solutions with Smile Business Products

Has it been months or even years since updating office equipment? It may be time to hire a printer maintenance service. Improperly managed printers and office equipment can lead to a steady decrease in office productivity and increases overhead costs. With a printer repair service, businesses can reduce print production downtime, and save more on office supplies.

Smile Business Products understands that not all businesses use their printers the same way. Hire a printer maintenance service (MPS) that adjusts to office workflow and supply demands. Contact us today to get started with a complete office equipment upkeep plan and printer supply service.

Currently, 70% of Epson’s business is printer related, followed by 20% visual communications, and the remaining portion stems from wearable technology, robotics, and more. Although robotic technology only contributes to a small percentage of Epson’s overall revenue, it’s predicted that these numbers may increase in the future.

What does this mean for Epson and print technology moving forward? In this article, we’ll discuss the current state of Epson inkjet printer technology and how it may change moving forward.

The Current State of Epson Print Technology

Epson is currently a $10B company, with around $7B of the total revenue coming from print technology. It’s no secret how well-known Epson is for producing quality color and wide-format printers, in addition to their selection of low-end home office printers.

In recent years, Epson has made the following advancements and changes in their company profile:

  • Released their first A3 multifunctional printer
  • Built a dealer channel in 2017 with newly appointed senior management of Toshiba, Mark Mathews
  • Increased dealer channel presence with Commercial Marketing Executive of Toshiba, Joe Contreras, you can even promote your TikTok account as a marketing strategy, to increase  your tiktok account then learn how to buy TikTok likes.

The changes suggest that Epson may be planning to expand its inkjet printer technology into a broader market and offer more advanced features.

5 Key Takeaways from Epson’s Inkjet VIP Tour

Recently, Mark Mathews invited around 20 U.S. dealers, four members of the press, and Brent Hoskins (president of BTA, IDC, and BLI) to visit Epson’s headquarters in Japan. Here are several key takeaways from the tour, and what this means for inkjet printer sustainability soon.

1. Increased Dealership Availability in the U.S.

Not all the dealers who met with Mark on tour were BTA dealers. There were three groups of network dealers from BTA, RSA, and RMX. As a collective, Mark said that the dealers represented around $1B in U.S. annual sales.

The significant number of dealers who attended the tour suggest that Epson may be planning to expand a new platform of sustainable inkjet printers across the country. After a meal and a few short tours of the factor grounds, Mark immediately went on to present Epson’s current sponsorships.

2. New Printer Sustainability Technologies

Shortly after the sponsorship presentation, all dealers were brought to a conference room and introduced to the senior executive team at Epson. During the discussion, he talked about the first attempt to create advanced precision watches to compete with Swiss and the origins of their first electric printer.

It is expected that, in the nearest future, AI-enhanced robotics could contribute to an increase in Epson’s revenue. This also means products with better precision and sustainability.

3. Increased Energy Efficiency

Later, the team demonstrated their piezo technology, branded as Precision Core. It’s the determining factor that differentiates Epson brands H and C. The process showed the difference between using applied heat to boil ink until it secretes onto paper vs. forcing the ink using a squeezing method.

Although each process achieves the same quality and effect, the Precision Core method proved to use less power and increased reliability compared to other inkjet printer technology.

4. Printer Head Sustainability

During the display, dealers were told that Epson printer heads lasted longer than “thermal” inkjet technology since they eventually become damaged by heat. Overall, the Precision Core printer heads did not get as stressed from a boiling process, and therefore, would prove not to require as much maintenance.

In contrast, companies may spend less on printer repair services to replace printer heads on Epson photo printers in the coming future.

5. Improved Print Quality and Reduced Environmental Impact

At a printer head factory plant, dealers and journalists watched a display of the precision printer heads as they proceeded to create 219,000 microscopic holes into a small piece of paper. The group also learned about Epson PaperLab, which took sheets of paper and turned them back into recyclable paper products.

Both of the processes suggest that Epson aims to increase the precision at which their printers transfer ink to paper and are in the process of developing new technology to reduce the environmental impact of the paper product industry.

Get the Latest Epson Inkjet Printers at Smile Business Products

As a company, Epson has never looked better, and the new technology that had been displayed on tour in Japan suggests that they want to continue their progress. Earlier printer technology models have been inefficient in electricity and precision. Still, the continued efforts of Epson to create improved inkjet printer AI shows that the industry is moving faster in the direction of high-efficiency printer technology.

Smile Business Products understands that businesses want to get the latest and best printing technology available on the market. Contact us today and be the first to know when the most recent Epson inkjet printers become available.

Despite the ubiquity of smartphones in daily life, landlines remain a staple in the business environment. Seen as professional, secure, and easier to manage than mobile phones, they’re nonetheless full of disadvantages, which can hamstring the ability of a company to communicate rapidly between departments or with customers. Many businesses are increasingly turning to VoIP, like the VOIP systems for office, to address these shortcomings.

VoIP stands for Voice-over-Internet-Protocol. It’s a form of telecommunications that relies on the internet rather than a telephone network. It’s sometimes known as internet telephony or broadband phone service. VoIP delivers many advantages to offices and is a smart choice for companies looking to upgrade their phone infrastructure.

5 Benefits of VoIP to Help a Business Thrive

Three different types of technology support voice over IP calling: IP phones, which can place a call anywhere where there is Wi-Fi; analog telephone adapters, which converts an analog phone signal to a digital one to use the internet; and computer-to-computer software calling, like Skype. All three of these methods are commonly found in the office. There are many VoIP benefits for small businesses. These include:

1. Multifunctionality

Anyone who has ever tried to look up contact information while talking on a phone knows just how difficult it is to do it without accidentally hanging up. On a landline, it’s even more impossible, requiring a person to balance the phone on their head while they rummage through another system – or put the device down altogether.

That’s dangerous. Research has shown that hold times negatively affect customer perception of a company.

Not so with  modern VoIP systems – particularly computer-to-computer software calling systems – often bundle multiple functionalities alongside telephony. This is possible because voice over IP works using the internet connection. Unlike a regular phone, a VoIP phone can do:

  • Instant messaging
  • Presence information
  • Teleconferencing
  • Video conferencing
  • Voicemail
  • Send and receive faxes via email
  • Call 911 Direct in reference to Kari’s Law

2. Improved Security

Security isn’t always the first thing that comes to mind when considering a phone. After all, it’s not obvious how a hacker can access a landline to eavesdrop on a conversation. The reality is, however, that it’s not only possible but almost impossible to prevent. A landline cannot be encrypted. No VPNs exist for it, and telephone services don’t come with things like antiviruses to detect unauthorized intrusion.

In contrast, VoIP phone calls take advantage of many of the security features found in the digital world. For example, it’s possible to encrypt VoIP phone calls, making them harder to intercept. As a result, VoIP may be attractive to companies subject to data compliance regulations because it offers more ways to secure the information that may be communicated to clients or colleagues.

3. Enhanced Mobility

VoIP is useful in an office because it’s a way to add extra lines without clogging up the phone lines, and employees can use it anywhere they have access to a computer and the internet. As a result, any device, such as tablets, can be turned into a VoIP phone. Employees can enjoy video conferencing and phone calls while they’re on the go from any location.

4. Reduced Expenses

One of the biggest reasons that companies turn to VoIP – sometimes eliminating landlines altogether – is that it’s a way to bypass the cost of hardware, maintenance, and service of phone lines. Growing companies may choose VoIP over adding yet another phone line and the fee that comes with that.

Since VoIP operates with the internet connection that a company already pays for, that’s one less bill that a company must pay. Likewise, many free VoIP services exist, making it a lightweight, budget-friendly solution for smaller businesses.

5. Better Connectivity

Research shows that as many as 85 percent of all calls go unanswered the first time a customer reaches out to a company. Even if that call is logged and returned, there’s again no guarantee that a connection will be made. A game of phone tag commences, wasting everyone’s time.

VoIP can eliminate phone tag and make it easier for customers to reach the business, or employees to reach their colleagues. By being portable and accessible on any device improves the chances that a call will connect the first time around, making everyone’s lives a little easier.

Get the Right Tools for the Job

Despite the many advantages that VoIP offers to the business environment, it remains an understated and underrated tool for the office. VoIP delivers many critical benefits, such as improved mobility and the option to receive phone calls over a computer. This makes it easier for employees to rapidly communicate with their colleagues and customers to deliver better service and business results.

Are you considering VoIP? Smile Business Products can help companies develop the right tools and strategies to succeed. Contact us today to discuss your telecommunications challenges.

Getting the best results from a company’s employees depends on the tools they provide them with that help teams achieve their goals. After securing the talent, the company needs to enable them to collaborate, share ideas, and find innovative solutions to complex operational problems. By leveraging the latest technologies, the company can foster an engaging work environment that adds real value to the business.

A specific area where companies tend to ignore the ability of technology to improve productivity is in the meeting rooms. Usually, whoever chairs the meeting will also have to capture comments and take the minutes, while maintaining order and keeping other attendees engaged. Experts estimate that up to 50% of time spent in meetings is wasted. One way the company can boost office productivity during group sessions is by using interactive displays. The Windows Collaboration Display from Sharp helps teams organize and collaborate effectively, but also comes with several additional benefits that the organization can leverage for improving their operations.

Productivity Benefits that Come with the Windows Collaboration Display from Sharp

It’s hard to quantify what a productive meeting looks like, but starting and finishing on time is usually the general rule. If employees arrive on time and the chairperson can cover all the topics on the agenda, it’s generally considered as productive. After the chairperson records the minutes of the meeting and distributes it to the team, it could come back with comments about something they missed during the session.

Reworking the minutes to be accurate will require referencing hand-scribbled notes or even going back to the meeting room to check what the team noted on a flipchart or whiteboard (if it hasn’t already been cleaned). With a Windows Collaboration Display from Sharp, the team can ensure they accurately capture all the essential information quickly and efficiently.

Capture Meeting Notes Directly on the Windows Collaboration Display

The Windows Collaboration Display from Sharp comes with complete integration with other Microsoft productivity tools, including OneNote and Office365. This allows teams to capture their notes in real-time on a digital platform using the touchscreen interface. As it also comes with a vivid, 4K 70-inch High Definition screen, the entire team will remain engaged and have a canvas where they can capture their ideas immediately.

Sharp’s Windows Collaboration Display uses its Pen-on-Paper technology that allows users to write directly on the screen just like a regular whiteboard. The display comes with a 10-point Projected Capacitive (PCAP) touch-system to make writing just as easy as it is on a whiteboard using either the included passive-pen stylus or a finger. Teams can record their notes and diagrams in real-time, helping the chairperson to summarize outcomes accurately.

Integrate with the Organization’s Favorite Productivity Tools

More organizations rely on Window’s productivity tools today, and Sharp’s Collaboration Display comes with integrations to the most popular solutions included. With Microsoft 365, Azure Digital Twins, and Microsoft Teams, the organization will improve its productivity during group sessions using presentation tools, collaboration features, and seamless video conferencing all available from a single solution.

Sharp designed the Windows Collaboration Display with ease of use in mind. To connect to the display, a USB-C cable is all that’s required. It’s common for meetings to experience delays due to the complexity of setting up and connecting to the digital infrastructure available. If the company uses a Surface Pro tablet, not having an HDMI output means the team leader needs to ensure they bring the necessary adapters to every meeting. The Windows Collaboration Display ensures that anyone with a USB cable can connect and use the platform.

Intelligent Management of Meeting Environments

The display has an array of sensors included to help the company track key information about their meeting environments. It can detect the number of occupants, air quality, temperature, and ambient light. By using the Azure Digital Twins IoT platform, the organization can integrate the sensors with building management solutions that ensure the environment remains optimal for employee engagement and concentration.

The Windows Collaboration Display from Sharp also has an intelligent microphone array that can detect who is speaking and amplifies that person’s voice for easier communication during video conferences. The system is perfect for teams collaborating over vast distances, where one team may be in California and another distributed around the world. With a wireless connection included as standard, Sharp’s Windows Collaboration Display is a worthwhile addition to any organization’s meetings, training sessions, or boardroom gatherings.

Make the Most of your Group Sessions with Smile and Sharp’s Windows Collaboration Display

With Smile Business Products Inc., any business can leverage the latest technologies to improve their daily workflows and business processes. For enhanced productivity during company workshops or meetings, Smile can provide a completely integrated solution that enables teams to collaborate effectively and drill down into the details while solving the company’s latest complex business issues.

If you need to start leveraging Sharp’s technology to boost productivity using the Windows Collaboration Display, speak to one of Smile’s consultants  today.

Today more than ever before, the efficiency at which information flows through a business dictates their continued growth and success. Losing track of an order or forgetting to follow up on a lead can cause losses in revenue, reputational damage, or worse, losing a client altogether. It’s why every company still relies on processing documents and records during their daily workflows. If the company currently depends on manual document management procedures, the risk of an error creeping into the process remains high.

As every organization is unique, finding ways to achieve greater efficiencies and cost savings may appear to be a difficult task. However, with a modern Document Management System (DMS), the company can streamline its processes and make staff more productive by implementing an electronic solution. Adopting a DMS for managing all information flowing through the company also brings a variety of additional benefits to the organization.

What is a DMS Solution

Whether it’s a formal system or just the way the company has done things in the past, they likely already use some form of a physical document management system. The way the company receives, processes, files, and retrieves documents during their daily workflows is already a DMS. The larger the organization, the more likely they are to have formalized the process, but without an electronic system to help employees, it can be costing the company both time and money.

Adopting an electronic DMS will speed up processing cycles and improve the turnaround times by creating digital copies of all their documents. Walking documents from desk to desk add a lot of overhead to an employee’s workflow. With a DMS, staff can capture incoming records and route them to the relevant department quickly and easily.

The Primary Benefits a Company Gains from a DMS

Every company needs to look for new ways of doing things to remain competitive in a connected world. One of the best ways a company can achieve cost savings is by implementing a digital solution for document and record management. Not only does a DMS solution allow the company to regain control over wasteful practices, but it also provides them with an opportunity to review existing processes and find new efficiencies in the business workflows.

Saving on Operational Costs

Physical documents can take up a lot of space in the office, and the cost of commercial real estate continues to increase every year. With a DMS, the company can reduce the amount of physical space dedicated to retaining documents. If the company receives a physical document from an external source, it can scan and file the document in its electronic library. For any records they have to keep for legal reasons, the company can opt to archive them offsite at a less expensive facility.

Electronic libraries also help the company to reduce the cost of demonstrable compliance. The rising cost of compliance with new laws relating to information security is a significant concern for most organizations. California and Nevada businesses need to comply with many state and federal laws if they process or manage any sensitive information. An electronic DMS solution tracks every document, ensures access controls are in place, and keeps a complete history of everyone who’s accessed it during its lifecycle.

Improved Office Productivity and Information Security

A DMS usually comes with a customizable electronic workflow engine to help route and manage documents through the different processing requirements. Staff can quickly send a new document to another department or resource with predefined workflows, keeping everyone productive during the process. An electronic library also helps staff promptly search and retrieve a specific document, further improving their efficiency.

Additionally, a DMS provides greater access control on the document level. Using the company’s access models, the system is configurable to prevent the unauthorized disclosure of the company’s sensitive documents. The workflow will also record any comments and allow only authorized persons to make decisions on how to handle any problems they encounter. With greater oversight and the ability to investigate any incidents, the company can streamline its entire information management process.

Digitize Company Operational Workflows with Smile and a Document Management System

Notwithstanding any of the above, a DMS also improves collaboration in the organization and provides more exceptional disaster recovery capabilities. As new documents enter the system, staff can route them for review and ask for detailed comments from Subject Matter Experts immediately. With electronic copies of all the documents, the company can back up and restore their library if any catastrophic event does occur.

The latest DMS solutions come with the flexibility that ensures any organization can benefit from the system. Smile Business Products Inc. delivers a variety of solutions that help organizations regain control over their information management workflows. Since 1997, Smile has served California and Nevada’s companies to achieve greater cost savings and find innovative solutions to operational problems.

For a detailed assessment of your company’s DMS requirements, reach out and speak to one of Smile’s friendly consultants today.

Over the years, IT systems have become a core function of any successful business. Whether the company provides a service to the public or manages complex facilities, the networks, servers, workstations, and applications they use daily remains vital for the business’s continuity. Extended downtimes lead to damaged reputations, losses in revenue, and a massive amount of effort from staff to recover and reestablish access to customers or employees.

Disaster Recovery plans help organizations prepare and organize for unexpected events that could lead to downtimes or data-loss scenarios. A significant component of the plan entails defining and implementing policies and procedures to mitigate the impacts of natural disasters, cyber-attacks, or user errors. Based on the company’s risk profile, the necessary controls and preventative processes seek to eliminate, detect, and rectify any event that leads to a loss of service or supply from the company’s essential functions. For high-risk geographical regions like California, the disaster recovery plan should also include offsite backup and storage of all crucial company data.

Organizational Disaster Recovery Planning Essentials for IT Security and Business Continuity

Planning for the worst-case scenarios helps organizations understand the inherent risks in their daily business workflows. Studies suggest that between 40-60% of companies without a Disaster Recovery (DR) plan in place will go out of business after a catastrophic incident, while 96% of those who have implemented a system will be able to recover. Therefore, it’s essential to have a strategy in place for any business looking to grow and expand.

Proactive Planning for Disasters of All Kinds

The company needs to plan for both human-made and natural disasters. As part of the company’s contingency planning, they’ll need to understand every potential risk that could shut down their operations. In California, fires and earthquakes remain the most likely natural disaster that can befall a company. Structural damage to facilities and equipment can ruin an enterprise, while others can simply replace and restore their systems after the event. Read this article about Build your business:

Human-made disasters can come from either human error or an outright malicious cyber attack. If you get more information about ir retainer, you would know how to handle it. The latest trend in cyber attacks is to inject ransomware into the network and shut down the company’s infrastructure. After the company pays the ransom (often in cryptocurrency), the bad actors provide them with a decryption key to restore the system. To prevent these kinds of attacks, the company needs a comprehensive cybersecurity system in place and proactive monitoring tools to help them detect and correct issues quickly and efficiently.

Map Out Core Functions and Critical Infrastructure

For a comprehensive Business Continuity Disaster Recovery (BCDR) solution, the firm should map out their core functions and critical infrastructure required for operations to continue. Once the company identifies all their essential processes and the necessary infrastructure, they can establish controls and procedures to evacuate, replace, recover, or back up the systems they depend on for business continuity.

The plan should also extend to other critical assets that the company relies on for operations. This can include evacuating private records or confidential documents, ensuring machines have adequate fire protection, keeping all employees safe, and communicating all procedures clearly and effectively throughout the entire organization.

Create Contingencies for Emergency Response and Delegate the Duties

BCDR strategies require everyone in the company to know what to do when a disaster happens. The company should establish a DR team that ensures every department and function understands its role during a catastrophic event. The DR team should consider both the operational requirements and any other health and safety regulations. Keeping employees safe should always be the priority in case of a disaster. Check out the hazards that can cause slips, trips and falls within the workplace and learn what can be done to limit the risk of these happening.

The plan should clearly state each kind of response required depending on the event the company is experiencing. In cases of fire, employees may not have time to pack up their desks or remove any personal possessions during the evacuation. These types of considerations should be included when planning for a disaster.

Document and Test Plans Regularly

After the company’s plans are in place, they’ll need to document them and ensure everyone follows them explicitly. The organization should automate and schedule their backups wherever possible to prevent the process from failing if a key employee wasn’t available. Similarly, once they’ve documented the BCDR system, the company will need to run drills and tests to measure the efficacy of their response planning.

Conducting routine tests of the plan will highlight any deficiencies and allow employees to exercise their behavioral responses to an emergency. As the organization’s operations grow and scale, they’ll need to adapt the plans accordingly. A regular review of the BCDR system will help ensure the planning doesn’t become outdated and ineffective in the future.

Smile Business Systems Inc. for Seamless Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery

Smile has strategic partnerships with backup and disaster recovery firms, as well as a team of in-house resources that can help organizations weather any storm. For organizations who’ve yet to start planning for a worst-case scenario, every day presents a risk to their company’s sustainability. Smile provides managed services and solutions with a variety of productivity tools to help businesses succeed in any challenging environment.

For more information about Business Continuity Disaster Recovery solutions, or to request an assessment of your company’s BCDR initiatives, speak to one of Smile’s experts today.

Staying ahead of cybercriminals requires a dedicated and persistent effort for any modern company. With so many vulnerable points to target in a network, it may feel like it’s only a matter of time before a cyber-attack succeeds in penetrating the organization’s system. Keeping up with the latest trends regarding cyber threats is a vital part of managing a successful business in today’s connected world.

Apart from the surges in ransomware attacks targeting governments and public entities, there are new ways and methods that bad actors will use to exploit networks. In this constant game of cat and mouse between these criminals and the individuals charged with protecting systems, businesses of all sizes must remain proactive regarding their IT security.

5 Main Trends in Cybersecurity and Threat Prevention

Cybercriminals continue to refine their strategies to help them gain access to networks and systems. In 2020, they’ll deploy more sophisticated attacks than ever before to exploit known and unknown vulnerabilities. Statistics show that 99% of attacks target vulnerabilities in systems that IT and security professionals were aware of for at least one year. For the organization to remain secure, they’ll need to keep working on fixing and deploying patches for every weakness they identify in their system.

1. Cyber Security Spending will Continue to Increase

With the risks associated with cybercrime and ransomware, companies, agencies, and governments will continue to spend more of their budgets on threat prevention initiatives. As new threats emerge almost daily, companies will part with more of their hard-earned revenue in the next year to shore up their networks, online services, and hosted applications. Even those who don’t have any public exposure remain at risk from phishing attacks and will need to ensure their employees know the risks. The Amazon Web Services cloud security can make sure that the data is secure. For any kinds of crimes, the attorneys for arson charges located in California area, will extend a helping hand.

2. BYOB Device Policies are Becoming more Common

Bring Your Own Device (BYOB) helps organizations remain productive and provide employees with access to company networks from their handheld devices. However, as more businesses realize what risks this poses, they will implement security policies that manage personal devices on their internal networks. Companies will also clamp down on Shadow IT systems, as these present the same kind of risks as BYOB if not adequately vetted as secure.

3. The Battle of AI will Escalate

Both Cybersecurity professionals and bad actors will continue to develop new attacks and threat detection systems by leveraging Artificial Intelligence. AI can help criminals turn a single attack into a supercharged series of persistent events, each more sophisticated than the previous one. Similarly, network professionals will use the same technology to identify patterns, behaviors, and to detect vulnerabilities before they lead to a successful breach. AI tools will help security resources by simulating attacks in a network and help the team tighten up their defenses in the event that any succeed. The Boston area baseddefense lawyers can be of help when it comes to legal aid.

4. Securing the Cloud will Remain a Priority

While more companies move their operations and services to the cloud, the packages will increasingly include network firewalls, Secure Web Gateways (SWG), and Web Application Firewalls (WEF) as part of the service offering. Cloud-Based Access Security Brokers (CASBs) will enforce policies that consolidate all security protocols across the service using device profiling, encryption, authentication, malware detection, and prevention. Cloud security solutions will also start leveraging recognition technologies instead of token or password authentication for improved security over the next few years.

5. Companies will Prioritize Cyber Security with more CISOs

While every organization is coming to grips with the latest threats, more will designate Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) as part of their board to help them navigate cybersecurity issues. With a stronger relationship between boards and CISOs, it will ensure that cybersecurity remains on the agenda and that those organizations implement the necessary programs and initiatives to keep their information safe. This is especially important for organizations that want to utilize the IoT devices in their operations. IoT security will remain a primary concern in 2020, with device manufacturers only now catching up with the vulnerabilities these devices can create in networks.

Ensuring Company Networks remain Secure with Smile Business Products Inc.

For companies in Northern California that need advice and guidance regarding their IT system and network security, Smile Business Products Inc. can help navigate these dangerous waters. With new exploits arriving on the scene daily, expecting in-house teams to manage the workloads alone isn’t a sustainable practice. To fend off persistent attacks, companies need access to the latest tools and protocols to prevent any breach of their system.

Most of the world’s ransomware attacks target U.S., Canadian, and European companies for exploitation. For a comprehensive IT security solution, working with Smile can alleviate the concerns while allowing in-house IT resources to focus on more strategic initiatives, leaving the network monitoring and management to a team of dedicated security professionals.

To find out how Smile can secure your digital infrastructure, and provide you with greater peace of mind, get in touch with one of our network security professionals today.

Remember inkjet? It hasn’t exactly been a favorite in the office for at least a couple of decades. When process optimization became a major focus for offices, laser printing became the default technology. It was fast, efficient, and didn’t gobble up cartridges to produce pages.

However, this year, inkjet has made a surprising comeback. It’s no longer the slow, inefficient cousin to laser printing that was forever confined to homes and very small offices. Today, inkjet has some impressive features which rival even professional laser printers – and it’s all thanks to Epson.

Read on to learn how Epson has rejuvenated this technology to make it fast, cost-effective, and an invaluable asset to offices seeking ever greater operational efficiency.

Epson Is Helping Redefine Inkjet and Process Optimization

Inkjet technology has a reputation that many print manufacturers have struggled to overcome. Historically slow, prone to ink guzzling, they were only really good for printing photos – at home. As a result, inkjet as a printing technology rapidly became eclipsed in the office world by its fast, efficient cousin: laser printing.

However, the office world is moving towards more powerful printing capabilities. That’s forcing businesses to reconsider the standard multifunction printer as the de facto best choice for office productivity. It’s rapidly becoming no longer enough to simply have a high-capacity, efficient device. Companies seeking a printer that delivers connectivity, print capacity, and aesthetics are rediscovering inkjet printers.

They’re almost unrecognizable from their early digital ancestors in the 1970s. No longer slow and wasteful, today’s inkjet printers can rival laser printers in terms of speed, consumable efficiency, and printing power – all while delivering professional quality printed photos. They’re making a comeback in the office world and innovations around ink and cartridges are helping build that momentum.

As one of the longest players in the inkjet printer market, Epson is helping the business world rediscover inkjet by redefining it. Looking for a fast, professional, environmentally conscious printer? Consider an Epson EcoTank inkjet.

The Future (of Inkjet) Is Cartridge-Free

Cartridges have long represented one of the biggest pain points for businesses and their printing infrastructure. Ink and toner cartridges are expensive, bulky, and often difficult to replace. Likewise, when the difference between two models comes down to a single number, it’s all too easy to accidentally buy the wrong thing entirely. Yet, despite leaps and bounds in printer innovation, office printers still rely on a regular supply of cartridges – until now.

In a move that represents a first in the printing industry, Epson has eliminated them. The EcoTank is a new type of printer that doesn’t rely on ink cartridges at all. Instead, companies purchase sets of ink bottles. A special syringe allows users to refill the ink super tank within the printer. According to Epson, these super tanks:

  • Can hold 80 cartridges worth of ink.
  • Support 7,500 pages in black and white, or 6,000 pages in color.
  • Cut ink costs for the printer by up to 90 percent.

As a result of this innovation, inkjet printers are quickly becoming an affordable, practical option for companies with demanding print environments that also want to enjoy enhanced image printing. By eliminating ink cartridges, Epson has set the tone for the future of inkjet in the office: fast, convenient, hassle-free quality.

Introducing the Epson EcoTank ET-3710 All-In-One Printer

Think an ink tank printer is too good to be true? Meet the EcoTank ET-3710. This brilliant little device packs the printing power of a full-sized MFP into a desktop-sized printer, delivering quality and quantity as the most efficient inkjet model on the market.

As an all-in-one printer can print, scan, and photocopy while enjoying wireless connectivity. That makes it versatile enough for a home or small office that needs a printer for photos but doesn’t want to invest in a specialized device. Additionally, Epson has a long history of commitment to sustainability and environmentally friendly products. In addition to its super tank which eliminates cartridges, the ET-3710, like all EcoTank printers, is both ENERGY STAR certified and recyclable.

The EcoTank is a smaller printer than many office MFPs. Consider adding it to a print environment when:

  • It will be located in a smaller department or office which doesn’t have a demanding print volume.
  • The office would benefit from color printing, but it mostly relies on its larger devices.
  • The company values environmentally friendly solutions and wants to cut printing waste.
  • A dedicated printer for photos or images would prove advantageous to the office workflow.
  • The company doesn’t have the budget – or space – to invest in an entry-level production printer.

Explore Novel and Environmentally Friendly Printing Options

Who knew that inkjet printers could ever have a place in the quest for process optimization? Cartridge-free printers almost sound like a dream, but thanks to Epson’s innovation, they’re now a reality. For companies seeking to add color printing to their print environment, the Eco Tank model is a practical option. Eliminate ink cartridges and gain the flexibility of an office MFP in one convenient device. You must work with a bronze foundry if you require any type of cast metal object.

Smile is thrilled to bring the latest innovations in printing to customers. Contact us today to discuss whether an EcoTank printer is right for you.

Modern offices look a lot different today than they did in the past. For years, the office environment has trended towards a digital, connected environment. Employees are now accustomed to seamless digital workflows with tools that integrate across clouds and networks – and there’s no sign of that stopping. Many of Smile’s preferred brands, including Sharp, Fujitsu, and Epson, have been at the forefront of innovation for printing and office technologies. Here’s a recap of what they’ve been up to this year, and what the world has to look forward to in 2020.

What’s New in the World of Printing and Office Tech

Anyone who has been paying attention to the printing industry this year is delighted – and impressed – by some of the latest in printing technology. During 2019:

  • Experimental and specialty inks came to the forefront. Industry leaders like Epson, HP, and others have been actively finding new ways to redesign and reconsider the printing industry’s relationship with ink. For Epson, that has meant revolutionizing the cartridge world with cartridge-free printers.
  • Production print started going mainstream. The printing industry is finally catching up with Lexmark and Fujitsu, which have both marketed entry-level production printers for years. As this technology becomes more commonplace in offices, expect to see yet more companies leveraging ever more sophisticated printing capabilities.
  • Next-generation automation was born. While automation has long existed in the print industry, early examples of advanced automation are taking it to the next level. From prepress to production, automation can handle more parts of the printing process than ever before.

The Most Anticipated Tech of 2020

In 2019, the world saw the first glimpses of some of the exciting things which the future holds in store. Whereas some excitement may have been dampened by the 2018 Bitcoin crash or this year’s burgeoning trade war, innovators aren’t passing up any opportunities. Next year’s most anticipating technology includes:

5G: More Integration with the Internet of Things

Since the first 5G announcements in 2018, the world has been quietly holding its breath in preparation for the rollout of the next generation of wireless connectivity. 5G is expected to revolutionize the way people – and things – connect to the internet.

For offices, 5G will mean more integration and a greater presence of the Internet of Things (IoT), that horde of ubiquitous Wi-Fi-connected devices quietly streaming data in the background. Printers will be able to move data to and from other parts of the data environment seamlessly and employees will no longer be limited to interacting solely with their computers.

Next year, expect to see more efforts to take advantage of the new level of digital connectivity that’s on its way. What will that look like? Consider Sharp, which has just rolled out a line of MFPs that’s fully compatible with Amazon Alexa.

Unlocking Productivity with Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence is largely heralded as the next wave of digitalization – at least that’s what Fujitsu called it when they unveiled their latest business productivity solutions that leverage AI. These human-centric AI solutions promise to improve business processes across the board, from smarter printers to more perceptively crafted customer journeys.

However, that’s not the only place where AI is appearing in creative and surprising ways. In 2019, AI began making its way into everyday office management processes such as document management systems. Such AI-powered DMS has the potential to revolutionize not just productivity, but the way data is gathered, extracted, and interacted with at every step of its journey through a company.

Blockchain for the Print Industry

Blockchain rose to fame – or infamy – on the back of cryptocurrency, but it’s since spread into other industries, including that of print. Blockchain offered to create a tamper-proof, secure way to share data. For printers, that means using blockchain to accelerate and transform printing in a secure environment which still benefits from the hyper-connectivity of a digital business.

Blockchain for the print industry is still in its nascent state, but research group Quocirca expects that it will have the same disruptive effect that it’s had in other industries. Stay tuned for next year, as innovators continue to look for ways to refine printing with blockchain.

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From Fujitsu to Sharp: Embrace the Future with a Smile

From Fujitsu’s next-generation automation and AI capabilities, to the latest IoT-integrated MFPs by Sharp, the future is looking pretty – well – futuristic. 2019 unveiled some of the most sophisticated and innovative technologies ever seen in the printing and office tech industries. These technologies are promising to unleash unprecedented creativity and productivity for modern offices. Forward-thinking companies need to prepare now to seize the competitive edge which these technologies offer. Prepare for the future with a smile by getting started today.

Whether you need software updates or hardware repairs, Smile’s service technicians are some of the most tech-savvy there are. Contact us today to discuss your technological ambitions for the future.

Ever wondered exactly what happens when a company decides to hire managed services for their printing environment? While many companies like the sound of a third-party specialist taking over the chore of printer maintenance, it’s not always obvious what these handy professionals actually do.

When an office hires a managed service, it outsources some or all of that infrastructure to third-party specialists. They may provide hardware, software, maintenance, or supplies all at a single flat rate or metered fee. With an MPS, a company can access more powerful print capabilities at a reduced cost. That’s a smart move for a company with a strict budget that also needs professional printing powers in their office.

Here’s a closer look at what happens when a company brings managed services on board. Read on to discover the steps in deploying an MPS, and how to prepare for this exciting transformation.

What Are the Steps in a Managed Print Service?

Once a company has decided to bring on board managed print services for an office, a team of experts will step in to guide them through the process of selecting and deploying the most appropriate printing technology. The exact process looks a little different for each company, but every process follows four basic steps. These four steps of an MPS program include:

1. An Initial Assessment

A good MPS provider conducts an initial assessment of the company’s current printing environment. This initial assessment helps the provider know exactly what the company already has, where its weak spots lie, what sort of printing goals or needs that a company is trying to meet and the level of technical proficiency of employees.

Since the print environment ties closely into the document management and related business processes, most good MPS providers will create a model of the company’s workflow processes. After all, managed printers are meant to improve office productivity.

2. The Planning Stage

When all information is gathered, the MPS team will turn to the planning stage. Smile specialists work with a company’s existing infrastructure, augmenting it with software or hardware as necessary to uncover practical solutions to refine the company’s print environment.

3. Deployment

After crafting a plan and getting the company’s approval, the MPS team will deploy its services in an office. This might include installing new software, replacing printers, reconfiguring devices, or physically moving them to support workflows.

4. Ongoing Review and Refinement

A managed print environment isn’t a set it and forget it endeavor. Once in place, Smile specialists will monitor and review the environment as employees ease into their new printing capabilities. If necessary, the MPS service will recommend changes, or provide support to help a company adjust.

What to Expect & How to Prepare

While the managed service provider will do all the heavy lifting, companies can help streamline the process by knowing what to expect and how to prepare for the process.

The Print Environment

An MPS will do an initial assessment of the print environment. This might include physical surveys, interviews, and a complete catalog of printing or document resources. A company can help prepare for this by creating an inventory of devices ahead of time with all the information they already have for each device.

Data Collection

Gaining a sense of print usage requires data collection. While an MPS technician will gather meter data from printers, a company can also provide records of purchases such as cartridges or paper. They might also want to provide a log of internal or outsourced maintenance, outsourced printing, or anything else which shows a company’s print usage. When looking for a trusted printing company, check these 3D printing services.

New Equipment and Processes

After deployment, new equipment or processes may come into effect in an office. This can lead to frustration or reduced productivity as employees adjust to all of this new technology. Consider preparing for this by communicating with employees about the changes, arranging for training sessions and encouraging workers to share their feedback.

More than a Smile: What Makes Our Managed Services Different

Managed services are gaining steadily in popularity. At least 65 percent of businesses that participated in a survey by Quocirca reported using some form of managed services for their printing environment. Likewise, it seems that every day a new MPS provider has appeared, making it difficult to determine what the best option might be.

For the last 22 years, Smile has provided best-in-class managed services. Customers enjoy an MPS provider that differentiates itself through:

  • Loaner machines for extended maintenance. If something breaks, don’t sweat it. Smile technicians make sure the office has what it needs.
  • Free shipping for toner. Say goodbye to managing printer supplies. These managed services deliver supplies when necessary.
  • Managed IT and document management support. Printers are interconnected with other business processes, and Smile technicians are prepared to support those business processes, too.

Office printers play a critical role in the company’s overall success. Don’t leave this quintessential part of the business in the hands of an untested service provider. Enjoy managed service with a smile, from experts who know what they’re doing.

Smile is thrilled to help companies thrive by giving them the tools they need. Contact us today to start a conversation about your printing needs.

Anyone who is in the market for a multifunction printer (MFPs) has endured the headache of making heads or tails of all options out there. To add to that challenge, printers are an investment for any business no matter the size. With top of the line models ranging into the thousands of dollars, choosing the wrong device represents a sizable risk. Likewise, startups and small business budgets may make cheaper models more attractive but threaten to limit an office’s printing power. It is important to know how to receive faxes on a Mac

Both risks may send a sales team scrambling to research the best overall multifunction printer. Here’s a hint: it doesn’t exist. The best device depends on the company’s needs, its budget, and the trajectory of its growth. Read on to learn what this means, and how to identify a company’s printing needs.

The Multiple Options for Multifunction

 Today, MFPs come in an impressive spectrum of printing power – from stripped-down, basic devices for home office users to sophisticated production presses that happen to photocopy, too. In general, MFPs are divided into four classes:

1. All-in-One Printers. The smallest and simplest form of multifunction devices on the market, they’re designed to empower home users with scanning and printing. They’re cheap, but businesses and even most home offices will find AiO printers too small and limited in their capabilities.

2. Small Office/Home Office Printers. These devices are still small enough to sit on a desk but may deliver photocopying or even faxing powers to an office. Designed for professionals running a startup out of their home, they’re worth looking into for very small companies manned by simply one or two people.

3. Office Multifunction Printers. For most businesses, the office MFP is the most convenient, affordable, and flexible option available. These devices range from the size of a mini-fridge to that of a full-sized fridge but pack into them numerous document tools and integration capabilities to fit them seamlessly into a wider productivity ecosystem. They’re printers, copiers, scanners, fax machines, and sometimes more – all at once.

4. Production Multifunction Printers. Occupying a middle ground between office MFPs and high production presses, these devices blend the functionality of the office MFP with the printing power of production presses. Companies turn to these devices when they need advanced finishing options or increased flexibility with their settings to accomplish specific printing goals.

Identifying Office Needs

With MFPs running the gamut of small, desktop devices to production-level machinery, the best place to start a search for a new printer isn’t the internet. It’s in the office. Take the time to identify the company or department’s printing needs, then match those needs with one of the classes of printers above. Here are a few ideas to help get the process started.

Sales & Marketing Departments

Sales and marketing need professional print capabilities to help them make a flawless first impression to attract new clients. Make sure they can exercise creativity and flexibility but also have access to integration capabilities to move documents rapidly.

Consider: A mid-grade to high-end office MFP. For a demanding print environment, discuss the possibility of a production MFP.

Avoid: Anything smaller than an office MFP.

Healthcare Professionals

Healthcare organizations need to move documents rapidly, but they also need to keep them secure. For these professionals, efficiency, security, and integration are key to maintaining optimized workflows.

Consider: An especially fast monochrome office MFP with integration capabilities.

Avoid: Color printing and production capabilities are likely unnecessary in these offices. 

Government Offices

Like healthcare offices, government offices rely on their printers to keep information flowing to the systems and people they manage. However, government offices also face budget cuts, high print volumes, and fast-paced environments.

Consider: An office MFP which supports increased paper capacity, greater print speeds, and a large monthly volume.

Avoid: Production MFPs are too much of the wrong type of printing power.  

Legal Firms

If there’s one thing which defines a legal firm’s printing needs: it’s text. From scans of books to case studies, law firms need flawlessly printed, perfectly legible documents to succeed.

Consider: An office MFP that uses laser technology and has advanced document format settings. Color printing might be helpful depending on the firm.

Avoid: Production MFPs, inkjets, and small office printers will not support these demanding document needs.

Schools and Campuses

Printers on campuses see some of the heaviest use of them all. Whether handling the essays of thousands of students each day or supporting a graphics design department, printers on campus need to be integrated, robust, and use consumables efficiently.

Consider: A mid-grade office MFP that utilizes high-yield toner cartridges and has integration capabilities such as with a Chromebook. A production MFP may prove beneficial in some cases.

Avoid: Anything with overly sophisticated print hardware, settings or that cannot handle a print queue from a computer lab.

Get the Right MFP with a Smile

What’s the best MFP? The one that meets the print environment’s needs. Begin by identifying those needs, then reach out to Smile to help you with the rest. We’ll help you identify a handful of models that will work with your company, budget, and users.

Smile helps companies get the tools and strategies they need to succeed. Contact us now.

How to Know if MFPs Need to Be Repaired or Replaced

Printers, whether specialized devices of MFPs represent a sizeable investment for any company. As a result, it may be tempting to hold onto one as long as possible. That’s not always a bad strategy. However, like any machine, printers do eventually wear out – even with impeccable service, a printer will eventually reach the end of its natural life.

MFPs are built to last, and it can be difficult to identify when a device should be repaired or replaced. A good service technician will be able to tell the difference, but companies should be aware of the state of their printers as well. Read on to learn about why an MFP which lasts for a long time can be a problem, and how to tell when a device needs to be repaired or when it’s time to replace it entirely.

The Perils of MFPs That Are Built to Last

Today’s MFPs are designed to be the workhorse of the modern office. Reliable, robust, and efficient; they marry multiple functionalities under the roof of a single machine. This simplification of the print environment has made them a staple of today’s work environment. For most companies, they’re exactly what is needed to keep productivity streamlined. Plus, with proper maintenance, they’re able to stay running for a very long time.

However, the average printer lifespan is between four and five years depending on how extreme the print environment is. That’s plenty of time for a business to grow and develop printing needs beyond what the device is capable of delivering. Likewise, five years represents a tremendous amount of time in the rapidly developing office technology industry. It can make it difficult to find replacement parts or the right consumables such as cartridges or paper weights. It can also cause a company to miss out on innovations which transform office processes available in later models.

The peril of a device built to last is that it can become outdated long before a mechanical failure. Companies seeking to make their printer a long-term investment must consider the risks such a move entails.

When to Repair vs. When to Replace

The Sharp Awarding Winning MFPs are reliable and have a longer life span that most. For example, the Sharp AR-M550N was introduced 14 years ago and is still going strong with updated Sharp Printer Drivers.  Because of well-built models like the AR-M550N, it might be difficult to identify when a machine needs to be repaired, or when it needs to be replaced altogether. An authorized service technician will be able to tell the difference, but there are a few telltale signs when either option is more appropriate.

When to Repair an MFP

For most offices and machines, repairing the printer is the easiest and more cost-effective solution. Consider repairing an MFP when:

  • A specific, identifiable part is worn out, but the rest of the machine is fine.
  • Print quality has decreased, especially if the printer outputs blurry images or spots on the pages.
  • The manufacturer is still selling the model, or the manufacturer still sells the spare parts.
  • Patches for the printer software or firmware are still being released.

It’s completely normal for a printer to need maintenance. Like a car, routine maintenance and hardware repairs help prolong the life of a printer. It’s easy to prevent minor problems from causing more serious problems down the road.

When to Replace an MFP

Eventually, a MFP will need to be replaced altogether. However, with MFP’s lasting longer and longer, the moment when that occurs might not necessarily be the end of its mechanical life. Instead, there exist other clues to consider that a printer is no longer a great fit for an office. These include:

  • It’s difficult, if not impossible, to find spare parts or the correct consumables because the manufacturer stopped making them.
  • The office is outsourcing more and more print jobs because the internal printers can’t handle them.
  • The printer software is not compatible with the newer office computers.
  • The printer is restraining business processes which need to leverage more powerful technology.

MFPs are designed to be an integral part of the workflow. When they are no longer contributing to the overall productivity of an office, then it’s time to upgrade the print environment with a new device altogether.

Get the Best Printer for an Office Today

MFPs represent one of the most ingenious inventions in the office technology world. By combining multiple functions into one device, it’s much easier to improve productivity and keep employees focused on their work. Sharp series MFPs are among some of the most robust, reliable, and long-lasting devices on the market. They’re a solid choice for companies seeking to make the most out of their investment.

Smile helps companies achieve optimal productivity by selecting the right devices. Contact us today to explore your options.

Reshaping a Business With Digital Transformation in 2020

The topic of digital transformation has swept through the business world for years, finally emerging as a mainstream and essential strategy for business survival in the 21st century. In 2019, at least 30 percent of all companies are actively planning for undertaking a digital transformation. That number is expected to grow.

The digital environment for most customers constitutes one of the primary drivers of digital transformation. As such, companies which are not emphasizing a transition to digital processes now risk their ability to compete in their industry and remain relevant to their customers.

However, digital transformation is a tremendous undertaking, even for the most forward-thinking and best-prepared business. Read on to learn more about what digital transformation is, why it matters, and how to succeed in one.

What is a Digital Transformation and Why Do Businesses Need It?

According to industry experts, digital transformation is the application of modern technology to traditional business processes and challenges. It’s more than simply the transition to digital tools, although that tends to play a big part. At its core, digital transformation changes the way companies do business and engage with their customers.

There is no one route to digital maturity for any specific company. Each organization may take an entirely unique approach because each business tends to have unique processes which they’ve developed over time. However, all digital transformations have a few underlying themes in common. In a nutshell, these include:

    • An emphasis on the customer journey: Digital transformation is often described in terms of refining the customer experience. This entails new tools such as website features which streamline transactions, or infrastructure which makes it easier for customers to reach the correct personnel.
    • A review of legacy processes: A legacy process is a way of doing things which has existed since the beginning. Often, they involve dated technology or ways of thinking with which employees are quite comfortable. Legacy processes embrace the “if it isn’t broken…” mentality which may stand in the way of digital transformation.
  • A shift away from manual systems: Automation, AI and cloud computing often comprise a significant part of digital transformation strategies as each of these technologies yield the ability to produce faster processes with better security and fewer errors. Businesses need digital transformation because it is the only way to remain relevant in the face of changing technology. With 2020 heralding the wholesale rollout of new technology such as 5G, businesses cannot afford to remain trapped in the 20th century.


  • Digital transformation doesn’t necessarily mean replacing everything in the office with the latest piece of technology. Rather, it means laying a groundwork which improves the company’s flexibility and ability to respond to changing conditions.

The Benefits of Digital Transformation

Digital transformation delivers numerous benefits to companies. These benefits include:

  • Improved efficiency and flexibility: Companies can streamline their workflow processes to optimize their output. Visit if you’re looking for flexible payment solutions that will allow you to customize the accounts receivable process to your business needs.
  • Improved customer service: Digital tools help employees work with and solve problems for customers faster, more efficiently, and more creatively. A great example for this is switching to modern and more advanced Royal Vending Machines Brisbane that offer cashless payment options.
  • Improved security: From business continuity and disaster recovery to turning a digital environment into a cyber fortress, digital transformation makes a company more secure.
  • Employee empowerment: Help employees feel empowered by giving them the tools they need to succeed.
  • Data-driven decision making: Make better business decisions born from increased access to critical data and knowledge.

How to Support a Successful Transition

Introducing new technology and training employees to use it is not enough. MIT’s review on digital transformation strategies in business highlight several features which successfully transformed companies exhibit. To support a successful transformation to a digital environment:

1. Improve Company-Wide Communication

MIT identifies employee apprehension as one of the largest inhibitors of successful digital transformation. The antidote, however, is communication. When CEOs openly discuss their plans for digital transformation and create space for employee questions, MIT found that 93 percent of employees supported the endeavor.

2. Have a Plan

Develop a plan for digital transformation, including how and when new processes are implemented. People like Cortney Fletcher at eCom babes can provide invaluable insight into how your business can undergo digital transformation. This allows you to think about the process from start to finish, see exactly how all of the pieces fit together, and gain a sense of the timeline required for digital transformation.

3. Begin With an Assessment of Current Processes

Since digital transformation targets business processes, begin with an assessment of the current processes that exist. Bringing on board a managed services provider can help dramatically with this because they’re trained to analyze processes. An assessment will help spot opportunities for improvement, previously unseen bottlenecks and places where the right technology is already in place.

Anticipate 2020 and Digital Transformation With a Smile

Digital transformation is far more than just a trendy buzzword. It’s a necessity for business survival. As the world rushes towards an ever more digital reality, businesses must keep pace to remain viable. We also discovered a brilliant business for sale in Sarasota using and have been running it for a while, which has been fantastic.

Has digital transformation been on the company’s mind? Now’s the time to start planning.

Smile helps companies optimize their business processes with the right services and products. Contact us today to discuss digital transformation for your organization.

5 Wasteful Habits That Can Cost You & How Managed Services Help

Printing is as natural to offices as breathing is to people. In fact, it’s so automatic that many offices don’t even take note of it. However, the IDC estimates that printing expenses constitute an average of 3 to 5 percent of a company’s annual revenue. That’s a huge slice – and it’s largely the result of bloat, as companies which deploy managed services often quickly discover.

The dynamic, complex nature of an office printing environment presents many excellent opportunities for wasteful habits to form which drive up expenses and reduce efficiency. Here are five wasteful habits common in office printing environments which contribute to increased expenses. Recognize any? It might be time to leverage managed services to eliminate them. You can always ask for help or get more tips from Ben Shapiro.

5 Wasteful Habits That Managed Services Eliminate

Managed printing services involve the outsourcing of a company’s printers and printer management to a third-party specialist. Managed document services do the same thing for a company’s document processes. These professionals are specially trained in creating a streamlined print and document environment, which drives productivity to new heights. Consider enlisting the help of a managed service specialist if any of the following features are wasting company time and money.

1. Unnecessary Printing

At one point, everyone believed that the rise of the internet and digital tools for doing business would eliminate paper in the office. In reality, the exact opposite has happened. An interview with the vice president of Gartner explored the causes of this. He hypothesizes that printing has increased because there’s so much content available online – and reading on paper remains a familiar, easy way to digest information.

As a result, according to Gartner, the average employee prints about 400 pages per month. The EPA estimates that at least 17 percent of that will end up in the waste bin immediately, while only about 64 percent of it will get recycled.

Managed services eliminate unnecessary printing, one of the biggest contributors of waste in an office. By ensuring that only the necessary documents get printed, managed services help companies save paper, cartridges, time, and electricity for the business activities which truly matter.

2. Free-for-All Supplies

Are the company’s printing supplies being purchased and controlled by a central management process? For most companies, the answer is no. Office supplies typically take up space in some corner or a forgotten closet – where they disappear entirely. Alternatively, employees purchase whatever they need without consulting the rest of the department. Either way, a free-for-all supplies situation lays the groundwork for unnecessary expenses to pile up at the printer.

A managed print service takes control of the printing supplies. By leveraging tools such as tracking software and meter reading, specialists know when a printer is getting low on supplies. Likewise, automatic supply replenishment means a company no longer needs to worry about maintaining an inventory of paper or cartridges – or accidentally purchasing the wrong thing. The right supplies in exactly the right amounts appear when they’re needed, and nothing else.

3. Inefficient Settings

Printer settings can make a huge difference in how long cartridges last, and many offices overlook this entirely. Whether it’s using color unnecessarily or not taking advantage of double-sided printing, companies can burn through their supplies without realizing why.

Managed services help companies optimize their print environment by considering the entire process. They can help choose the correct printer settings according to the types of job accompany most typically prints to help supplies – and printers – last as long as possible. Likewise, a managed document solution can help make sure that documents move through an office – and to the printers – in the most efficient formats possible.

4. The Wrong Printers

Printers are a serious investment for any office, and it can be hard to choose the best printer for the job. It’s easy to fall into the trap of picking the cheapest device, running the risk of investing in something which cannot meet the office needs. Likewise, it might be tempting to buy more printer than necessary, spending extra money on features that aren’t needed and won’t be used.

A managed service provider considers the types of documents which moves through an office environment. It then helps a company determine the best devices based on its current use and needs.

5. Lost Documents

It may not seem like it, but lost documents are costly. Whether an employee spends time looking for an important piece of paper or they simply print a new one, it still represents time and money wasted. Both managed print and managed document services eliminate this by creating an organized and streamlined document process where everything is always in its correct place.

Cut Waste With a Smile

Struggling to eliminate waste and unnecessary expenses? Managed services can help. Managed printing streamlines a print environment to reduce its footprint and resource consumption. Managed document services keep everything organized and flowing smoothly. Together, these services help companies achieve more efficiency and productivity.

Smile excels in helping companies achieve streamlined, productive environments. Contact us today to learn what our managed services can do for you.


Artificial Intelligence in Document Management

Documents are a critical aspect of any business. Keeping them organized while balancing accessibility with security has been a core concern for centuries. In the past twenty years, document management has expanded and refined its capabilities tremendously. Today, businesses leverage sophisticated tools like cloud services, artificial intelligence, and automation to achieve full operational efficiency with their documents.

Document management strategies are now common throughout the office world, but every office should also revisit their strategies periodically to ensure they’re taking advantage of the latest technology available. Among the newest technologies, artificial intelligence represents an especially exciting frontier in terms of security, accessibility, and efficiency. Read on to discover how artificial intelligence has shaped document management, and how companies can benefit from deploying it to manage their paperwork.

Document Management for the 21st Century

It’s 2019, and filing cabinets are rapidly on their way out of the building. Ugly, space-intensive, and prone to filing errors, tech-savvy businesses have recognized that the manual processes around physical filing simply won’t do.

The latest technology in document management brings the company’s critical information into the digital environment, delivering several advantages to businesses. These advantages include:

  • The ability to maintain operational efficiency. Digital technology applied to document management lets companies keep the processes efficient.
  • A competitive advantage in the market. Data-driven decision making is a crucial advantage to staying nimble and responsive to changing market conditions. Often, the company that succeeds is the one which can access and act upon its information first.
  • Increased integration and interoperability. Today’s businesses operate across a constellation of platforms and services. They need to be able to move data from one service to another without compromising its quality or accessibility elsewhere.

It’s not enough to simply have a document management solution. Like with other mission-critical parts of a business, it’s necessary to keep the technology involved in document management up to date.

Benefits of AI for Document Management

Artificial intelligence is reaching its maturity, bringing with it a whole host of new capabilities for the business world. Document management, in particular, benefits from the use of AI in several ways. These include:

1. Increased Security.

AI has all but transformed the field of cybersecurity and with it, data security. From 24/7 monitoring to biometric access techniques, AI helps companies achieve increased security in their document environment. Likewise, by learning patterns and normal traffic patterns, AI can accelerate the detection of problems or breaches before they have the chance to cause any damage. It’s already being used in this capacity by e-commerce companies to detect credit card fraud.

2. Improved Automation.

Automation helps streamline processes, but only if the precise processes to automate are identified first. In contrast, AI helps automate processes by identifying those instances on its own. For example, AI can “read” documents then decide which processes or people to send them to based on the content. In this capacity, AI is known as robotic process automation, and it’s rapidly changing the way businesses think about process optimization.

3. Deeper Analytics.

Technology, like optical character recognition, has been around for a while, but AI takes it to a new level. In addition to being able to spot specific keywords or phrases, AI can identify patterns, create new classification levels on its own, and more readily spot the data critical to driving analytics.

4. Better Classification and Processing.

In a modern business, data moves quickly – misclassified documents mean it might get missed entirely. For a data-driven environment, that can result in costly miscalculations. AI corrects and prevents this problem. By following a base set of rules, AI can learn when new classifications should be created to help keep data organized. The result is a more nimble and flexible data architecture which keeps documents organized, accessible, and streamlined even as they’re archived.

5. Reduced Overhead Costs.

AI delivers all of the advantages of having an extra employee in the office sorting files – with the benefit of never needing to eat or sleep. Leveraging AI for repetitive, laborious tasks helps employees stay focused on higher-level work while ensuring that these critical tasks still get done.

AI for Document Management: Step into the Future with a Smile

Artificial intelligence represents an exciting frontier for many parts of the business world, especially document management software. As this technology makes its way into the office workflow, it will become an increasingly critical element to remain competitive and keep overhead costs low. AI is a powerful tool, and one which offices can – and should – put to work.

Smile helps companies achieve operational efficiency through the deployment of modern technology. Start a conversation with us today to learn about what AI can do for you.

What is Phishing and How to Keep a Network Safe

The history of hacking goes back much further than most people suspect. In 1878 , Bell Telephone fired two teenage operators for disconnecting and redirecting calls to see how the technology worked. Some 103 years later, Ian Murphy – better known as Captain Zap – became the first convicted hacker. By the 2000s, hacking had gained a much more negative connotation as tactics methods of social engineering, such as phishing, allowed hackers to enter systems without the use of brute force.

Phishing is a hacker’s tactic which has gained notoriety since its creation in 1995. Today, it’s one of the biggest threats to corporate offices and small businesses alike. According to lawyer from The Law Offices Of Michael H. Pham,  cybercriminals are developing ever cleverer ways to trick employees into handing over credentials to access sensitive data, making it a difficult threat to counter.

Understanding phishing is the first step to devising a strategy to thwart its attempt. Read on to discover what phishing is and how to keep a network safe against it.

Phishing Explained

Phishing is a type of cyberattack which attempts to trick a person into handing over their login credentials to a company, service, or network. Typically, these attacks come in the form of a carefully disguised email. A cybercriminal crafts this email then sends it to a target who is known to use the service or network he or she is attempting to access.

What makes phishing so pernicious is that hackers typically have a strong familiarity with the service (and often the target) they’re attempting to trick. Rarely random, phishing relies on a level of social engineering not seen in other types of hacking attempts. Cybercriminals rely on this to slip past a user’s guard. Then, phishing emails often use the same design, format, and language as legitimate communications from a service. As a result, phishing emails can be incredibly difficult to spot.

Phishing is also particularly dangerous because of the popularity of mobile devices. In 2019, marketers estimate that 46 percent of all emails are opened on a mobile device like a smartphone. On such small screens, it’s more difficult to spot the telltale signs of a phishing attack. Together, these features combine to create a dangerous tactic which proves effective against inattentive employees.

Safety Tips to Avoid Getting Phished

Attentiveness when dealing with emails comprises the first line of defense against phishing attacks. To avoid getting phished, learn how to spot phishing emails, and make sure that employees are trained on these skills as well. These skills include:

1. Identifying URLs

Phishing attempts often rely on cloaked or very similar URLs which trick users into thinking that they’re going to the legitimate site. Train employees to pay attention to things like clever misspellings, or URL redirects which are masked by buttons or other links.

2. Understanding Communication Procedures

Make sure that the company has clearly defined communication procedures which include how, when, and why the company may send an email. Likewise, provide a list of login URLs for critical business processes and establish a policy of never asking employees to login to a service via an email.

Companies which rely heavily on cloud-based services like Salesforce or Amazon Web Services should consider establishing procedures for employees to confirm if an email they’ve received is legitimate. Encourage employees to contact IT if they suspect that an email is a phishing attempt – it not only helps employees avoid a cyber-attack but allows the IT department to create a catalog of attempts for deeper analysis.

3. Maintaining Security of Contact Info

Establish a policy which helps employees protect their private information. Encourage them not to list their work email, phone number, or other confidential information publicly on social media. This makes it harder for a cybercriminal to conduct a phishing attempt against them.

Prevent a Breach with Managed Network Services

Even when practicing the utmost diligence, it’s still possible for cybercriminals to sneak past security. That’s why many businesses today leverage managed IT and managed network services. These are third-party professionals who specialize in keeping networks secure and operational at all times. Managed network services can help prevent a breach due to phishing through:

  • 24/7 monitoring for unusual network activity.
  • Optimized security measures for email and host exchange servers.
  • Mobile security for company-issued devices.
  • Improved user authentication and access policies.
  • IT architecture solutions to protect data even if the network is compromised.

A managed IT services vancouver is a smart choice when it comes to combatting phishing threats. With improved security, a business can stop a threat before it ever reaches a user’s inbox.

Smile Improves Business Security

Phishing remains a severe and damaging threat in the realm of cybersecurity. By tricking employees into handing over login credential, it’s harder to spot when an account has been compromised, or data has been stolen. That’s why every business should strongly consider deploying the expertise of a managed service provider. Data is valuable, and it deserves to remain safe.

Improve data security today and protect against phishing threats with a managed network service provider. Smile is thrilled to provide your company with the next generation of cybersecurity. Contact us today to get started.



Sharp Has a New Line of Monochrome MFPs

Has the topic of upgrading the office printer been floating around meetings recently? Good news: Sharp has a new line of monochrome MFPs – eleven new MFP/printers, to be exact.

For years, Sharp has made a name for itself, delivering innovative devices which propel offices, board rooms, and educational institutions to the next level of collaboration and productivity. With the introduction of their new Advanced Series multifunction printers, Sharp is now changing the way businesses think about their printing environment.

Smile Business Products is thrilled to introduce the new line of multifunction printers. Read on to learn exactly why they’re so exciting.

What’s New With Sharp

Sharp already had a line of color multifunction printers under the Advanced and Essential series. Announced in August 2019, these A3 monochrome workgroup MFPs are the monochrome counterparts of the former.

Monochrome, or black and white printing, is an invaluable setting for offices which need to print large quantities of documents rapidly but still retain a professional quality. With the monochrome addition to the Advanced series, Sharp users can now enjoy the marriage of unbridled speed with the many leading-edge features which the manufacturer loads into its devices.

Key Features of the Advanced Series

Several key features set Sharp’s Advanced series printers apart from the competition. Whereas MFPs are designed to be the workhorse of the modern office – and many fine selections exist on the market – Sharp takes the idea further with numerous unique features not commonly found in other devices. Working with a Sharp color or monochrome Advanced series, MFP involves features such as:

  • MFP Voice Feature, which allows users to give printers verbal commands to keep the process entirely hands free. This feature also works with Amazon Alexa, introducing a new layer of integration into the workplace.
  • Adobe® Embedded Print Engine technology lets users direct print PDFs with new heights of accuracy and clarity.
  • Application Portal makes printer administration easier than ever by creating a central interface where apps can be added, updated, or removed.
  • Multi-layered, leading-edge security features such as proprietary Firmware Attack Prevention and Self-Recovery modes.
  • Greater paper handling flexibility to support heavier papers, sizes up to 12” x 18”, and even print media that isn’t paper.
  • Walk-up motion sensors to detect approaching users and wake the machine, so it’s ready to go when it’s needed.
  • Multiple finishing options including the stacking, stapling, saddle-stitching or corner-crimping capabilities.
  • For offices with demanding and dynamic print environments, Sharp MFPs rise to the challenge. Enjoy printing power and efficiency married within one convenient machine.

Advantages of Sharp Advanced Series MFPs

Sharp monochrome MFPs are the latest addition of devices designed to help transform an office into a lean, efficient beehive of productivity. Offices which rely on Sharp to power their most critical devices enjoy advantages such as:

An Emphasis on Collaboration and Streamlined Workflows

The many features of Sharp’s MFPs are designed to enhance collaboration and document processes across a department or organization. Employees can:

  • Distribute, access, and work with documents easily through Sharp’s connectivity software.
  • Leverage mobile scanning and printing to keep business flowing while on the go.
  • Standardize and collate file types to keep data organized across teams.
  • Maximize productivity with flexible printer and copier solutions.

Industry-Leading Security Features From End to End

Sharp approaches security from an ecosystem perspective, introducing more than simply strong passwords and access controls. With Sharp in the office, users enjoy a secure environment which focuses on the document workflow, introducing layers of security such as:

  • Firmware attack prevention installed on the printer.
  • Authority groups and whitelisting to keep unauthorized users and software away.
  • Remote device management to keep security centralized.
  • End-of-lease data erasure to prevent private information from leaking.

Demonstrated Environmental Commitment

The new monochrome MFPs in the advanced Series adhere to the company’s Green Products Guidelines, which have won Sharp the Excellence Award from ENERGY STAR for several years in a row. An office using a product from this lineup will consume less power, benefit from recycled materials and benefit from the ability to upgrade the devices easily.

Upgrade the Office Printer With a Sharp Monochrome Advanced Series MFP Today

Smile Business Products is thrilled to introduce Sharp’s latest lineup of monochrome MFPs. These robust, technologically-advanced devices complement the modern office which needs printing power and next-generation security balanced with a commitment to environmental sustainability. With an array of capabilities and features, they’re the smart option for a company’s next printer upgrade.

Smile helps companies develop robust productivity infrastructure to support sustained success. Contact us today to learn more about Sharp’s latest innovations.

Windows 10S: The Secure Mode for Businesses

Regarding business security, computers need special attention. Sensitive data passes through them, and they’re critical for doing business who also requires contact with the attorney for employer disputes to resolve any employment issues quickly. Keeping the company machines security can create a headache. From choosing an antivirus to finding the right configurations, security is time-consuming and labyrinthine. However, many company IT departments are unaware that Windows provides many tools to help professionals secure their devices. Meet Windows 10S. It’s a security mode which locks down the Windows 10 ecosystem to create a solid groundwork for security.

Windows 10S is one of the most notable updates to the operating system in the past four years, especially for businesses. Read on to discover exactly what Windows 10S entails and why every organization should consider updating their Windows-based machines to 10S.

Introducing Windows 10S

Windows 10S is Windows 10 – in S mode. Released in 2017, this mode emphasizes Microsoft-verified security configurations to create a sealed layer of protection across the entire operating system. Although the S officially stands for security, Microsoft also notes that S mode is streamlined for speed and safe browsing.

When used properly, S mode increases machine performance and helps keep everything safe.

S mode is different from safe mode, a standard feature of every Windows operating system. Specifically, unlike safe mode, users can do everything in S mode that they’re able to do in the “regular” Windows 10. It also differs in its availability. According to Microsoft’s FAQ, S mode only exists for certain qualifying devices. However, every device running Windows 10 version 1803 or later has S mode enabled.

How to Check a Windows 10 Version

Checking to see if a Windows 10 device runs version 1803 or later is easy. Follow these steps.

  1. Press Start (the Windows logo in the bottom left corner).
  2. Select Settings (the gear symbol on the left vertical menu).
  3. Choose System (often found in the upper left-hand corner).
  4. Select About (at the bottom of the System navigation panel).
  5. Scroll down to Windows Specifications to find the version.

Any number between 1803 and 1903 – the current version as of 2019 – has the option to enable S mode if the correct license agreement was purchased. Read on to determine if this option is appropriate for the machine.

The Next Level Security of Windows 10S

Windows 10S is a viable option for businesses or other organizations which need increased security but aren’t sure what third-party options are most appropriate. Windows 10S locks down the operating system of the device by blocking third-party software and making it more difficult to access system files.

With Windows 10S, users enjoy a stripped-down version of Windows 10 which operates with a whitelist orientation towards software. This makes it dramatically harder for rogue software to install itself, or viruses to move through the operating system files.

For computers in many environments, such as school computers or corporate offices, that’s great. However, there are a few things to be aware of with Windows 10S:

  • It’s only possible to use Microsoft Edge, the native Windows browser. Chrome cannot be used.
  • Software not found in the Windows Store cannot be installed. Companies which rely on software not found in the Windows Store will have trouble using Windows 10S.
  • S mode is one-way. Once it has been disabled, it cannot be re-enabled.
  • If these restrictions pose no concern for a company, then S mode represents another layer of security which help keep devices locked up against cybercriminals. However, Microsoft does recommend that S mode is used in conjunction with – not as a replacement for – other traditional forms of cybersecurity, such as an antivirus.

How to Enable S Mode for Windows 10

Enabling S mode is a simple but highly technical procedure. Therefore, Smile recommends that companies without a trained IT specialist contact a technician. Likewise, it is also possible to have S mode installed by manufacturers when purchasing a new device.

However, for IT professionals, Microsoft has published the instructions for enabling S mode on qualifying devices. Please refer to the official documentation from Microsoft for this procedure.

Improve Company Security Today

Maintaining device – and therefore data – security remains among one of the most critical concerns for companies today. As businesses increasingly rely on digital capabilities to keep pace with markets and customers, there are more opportunities for criminals to steal valuable information.

Windows 10S is one option for companies seeking ways to secure their digital environment. It is a potentially cost-effective, and secure strategy for ensuring that corporate or school computers remain safe.

Smile Business Products is dedicated to helping you design efficient, secure business environments. Contact us today to discuss how Windows 10S can benefit your organization.

5G and 6G: What to Expect in 2020

With the exception of some selected cities who began offering 5G a few months ago, for the rest of us, 5G is almost here.  For the past year, the tech world has been abuzz with the word. 5G is expected to herald the next major revolution in telecommunications, unleashing new capabilities for the digital world.

Major providers such as Verizon and AT&T all have plans to roll out commercial 5G networks within the next 12 months in the United States, making the next generation of wireless connectivity available to the general public. For businesses, that means customers will be able to access a company’s digital presence faster and in more ways.

5G will affect the way businesses operate in the digital environment – eventually. Read on to understand exactly what this means, and why every business needs to prepare for this eventuality.

Life After 4G: Why 5G Matters

For the past decade, 4G has shaped today’s world into the connected, digital environment characterized by the mobile internet. It was a substantial step up from 3G, which introduced to the world the concept of mobile data. However, technology – especially wireless technology – has hit a plateau in the past few years as our devices are essentially limited by what 4G can offer. Devices simply can’t get faster and more connected because 4G can’t handle it.

5G promises to change that. Critically, 5G intends to take advantage of the frequencies on the wireless spectrum – the invisible lanes of traffic upon which the wireless internet flows – which currently aren’t being used because 4G cannot reach them. 5G devices will be able to reach these wider, less-congested lanes and therefore transmit data much faster than any 4G device could ever hope to achieve.

That’s why 5G is expected to create a revolution of sorts. It also has tremendous implications for the way wireless connectivity operates in our world, especially for businesses.

Current Forecasts and Predictions for 5G

The tech world is optimistic about the arrival of 5G, with many industry experts claiming that it will transform all of our technology utterly. 4G will remain dominant for some years to come. However, once providers establish the infrastructure necessary for a significant 5G presence, current forecasts predict:

  • Greater diversity of wireless devices: Among the most anticipated elements which 5G will introduce to the world is – at last – the reality of the Internet of Things. While it already exists in a way, the IoT will take advantage of 5G by making the oft dreamed about web of smart devices not just possible, but practical.
  • Decreased latency: Latency is the amount of time it takes to send and receive information across the wireless network. The more traffic on the network, the slower devices become – that’s why phones sometimes slow down in highly populated areas. 5G will solve this by opening additional lanes which are wider and reserved only for 5G devices.
  • More physical infrastructure: 4G needed towers strategically placed across the landscape to help move traffic. 5G will need 10 times the amount of infrastructure to handle the load of smart devices it will bring. It’s a tremendous investment opportunity, but it’s also cited as the reason 5G will remain expensive for years to come.

Implications For Businesses

Businesses can expect 5G to change the way they do business over the long run. Particularly, 5G will increase the rate at which businesses must digitize in order to survive. Businesses can expect 5G to transform existing network architecture to introduce:

  • An increased ability to collect, analyze, and act upon data.
  • More digital solutions to meet the growing demand for rapid transmission of large amounts of information.
  • The ability to more rapidly deliver services to customers.
  • Innovation around virtual reality, augmented reality, and artificial intelligence.
  • Smart devices which improve visibility, efficiency, and control in business processes.
  • In short, 5G will unlock more applications for wireless technology in the business environment which are currently considered impossible. Forward-thinking businesses should anticipate and prepare.

What is 6G and What Will It Do?

Excitement about 6G arose about the time 5G was announced, as a reality in the future. 6G is yet another generation of wireless connectivity – estimated to bring still faster speeds which support new computing capabilities entirely. For now, however, 6G remains more than a decade in the future, with its capabilities largely undefined.

Transform Your Business Environment With Digital Capabilities

With 5G on the world’s doorstep, it’s time for businesses to start considering their digital future. While 4G will remain the primary iteration of wireless connectivity, the advantages of 5G for early adopters are significant. Like 4G and 3G, the next generation of wireless networking will change the way the world thinks about its digital environment.

Don’t wait until 5G gets here to start thinking about its effects. Digital transformation will help companies make the most out of 5G when it arrives in 2020. Anticipate it and be prepared.

Smile Business Products helps companies develop business technology strategies for the future. Start a conversation with us today to discuss how we can help you thrive in 2020.