Archive for Telus

TELUS Launches TELUS Agriculture

Posted in Commentary with tags on November 12, 2020 by itnerd

Today, TELUS announced the launch of TELUS Agriculture, a new business unit dedicated to providing innovative solutions to support the agriculture industry with connected technology. TELUS Agriculture optimizes the food value chain by leveraging data in new ways to increase efficiency, production, and yields, delivering better food outcomes for businesses and the end consumer. Connecting each piece of the agriculture value chain empowers farmers and ranchers, the agri-business industry, and agri-food, consumer goods and retail companies to leverage advanced data systems and artificial intelligence to streamline operations, improve food traceability, and provide consumers with fresher and healthier food. TELUS Agriculture currently supports more than 100 million acres of agricultural land, backed by a team of more than 1,200 experts across Canada, the USA, Mexico, Brazil, the United Kingdom, Slovakia, Armenia, Germany, China, and Australia.

Over the course of the last year, TELUS has completed several key acquisitions, assembling a suite of assets that is unmatched in the agriculture industry. Together under TELUS Agriculture, our team now has the expertise, experience, and relationships to connect every participant in the agriculture value chain, from seed manufacturers and farmers through to grocery stores and restaurants.

In addition, today, TELUS Agriculture is proud to announce our most recent cornerstone acquisitions, global sales and distribution solutions powerhouse AFS Technologies and SaaS farm management platform Agrian. Tampa, Florida-based AFS Technologies is a global leader in delivering value to the consumer goods industry with purpose-built integrated business planning, trade promotion management, and supply-chain management technology that drives efficiency, improves agility, and increases profitability. Fresno, California-based Agrian combines the industry’s deepest label resource with a holistic platform that manages precision agriculture, agronomy, sustainability, analytics, and compliance with striking ease and effectiveness. With the addition of AFS and Agrian, TELUS Agriculture is now a global leader with customers in more than 50 countries.

By bringing together innovative, market-leading companies at each stage of the value chain, TELUS Agriculture has built incredible scale and scope in the industry to be uniquely positioned to transform collaboration across the global agriculture industry as an independent player. This includes a billion acres of historical acre data and 170 million acres of real-time data across the most diverse crop markets in the world that can be leveraged to build industry leading AI and machine learning-based insights. At launch, the companies acquired include:

Acquisitions

  • AFS Technologies – Florida, USA – Comprised of AFS, Exceedra and Ignition, a global leader in supply chain management, and sales and distribution
  • AGIntegrated – Pennsylvania, USA – Seamless API integration
  • Agrian – California, USA – Unified management platform for precision, agronomy, sustainability, analytics, and compliance
  • Decisive Farming – Alberta, Canada – Precision agronomy and farm management expertise
  • Farm At Hand – British Columbia, Canada – Simplified farm management software
  • Muddy Boots – Ross-on-Wye, United Kingdom – Farm-to-food traceability and supply chain management
  • TKXS – North Carolina, USA – Custom data and program management
  • Feedlot Health Management Solutions* – Alberta, Canada – Critical insights and data-based knowledge

Partnerships

  • Hummingbird – London, United Kingdom – Advanced imagery analytics

For full details about TELUS Agriculture, please visit telus.com/agriculture.

TELUS Health, Canada Life and Innomar Strategies Pilot The First Electronic Prior Authorization Solution In Canada

Posted in Commentary with tags on November 10, 2020 by itnerd

TELUS Health, Canada’s largest health IT company; along with Canada Life, a leading insurance, wealth management, and benefits provider; and Innomar Strategies, a leading patient support service provider; together announced the launch of Canada’s first electronic drug prior authorization (ePA) solution. In a pilot program that will assess the value and potential benefits for users, the companies will test the digitized process to fulfill prior authorization submissions for real prescription cases and evaluate its impact on process efficiency, consistency of adjudication results and the overall plan sponsor and member experience.

How it works

Prior authorization is applied to certain prescription medications to determine if a benefits plan member is approved to receive coverage for that specific drug. Digital ePA solutions, which are available in other countries, help to unlock system efficiencies and productivity gains, resulting in decreased time spent fulfilling prior authorization submissions. With submissions in Canada expected to grow due to the increased utilization of specialty medicines, and even more coming to market, the TELUS Health ePA solution is set to make a significant impact across the country’s health benefits industry.

With the new TELUS Health ePA solution, physicians and patient support program staff can easily initiate the prior authorization process through a web portal, allowing them to complete all necessary forms, secure electronic signatures and deliver digital outputs directly to insurance providers and payors. This ensures complete information is submitted for processing and helps prevent delays as well as substantial back and forth between stakeholders.

The ePA solution supports:

  • Benefits plan sponsors and members by providing a more efficient and expedited prior authorization process, ensuring more timely access to medications and offering a simpler overall benefits experience;
  • Physicians and their staff, by reducing time spent managing forms, as well as delays in treatment, allowing more time to be spent with patients;
  • Insurance providers and payors, by making the adjudication process faster and more efficient, all while producing consistent results that lead to fewer inquiries to call centres and delivering a better experience for plan sponsors and their members; and
  • Patient support program providers, by streamlining processes which have the potential to increase efficiency of workflows and provide access to reported trends and metrics, improving the customer experience.

5G In Canada: A Promising Work In Progress

Posted in Commentary with tags on November 6, 2020 by itnerd

I’ve had my iPhone 12 Pro for a couple of weeks now. And I’m really liking the phone. But the real headline is 5G support. This is next generation of wireless technology that promises faster speeds and better coverage. To quote someone I know, it’s “the new hotness.” And based on my experience there’s some truth to that. Though we are in the early days of 5G.

Now, there are two types of 5G out there:

  • Sub-6 5G: Sub-6 makes the 5G signal durable and far-reaching. If you have a 4G LTE signal, you should be able to get a 5G signal when it arrives in your area. And you may be able to get better signal quality in areas where a 4G LTE is marginal at best. It also penetrates buildings really well. Speeds at worst should be what you see with 4G LTE. But you should expect to see marginally faster speeds with 5G.
  • mmWave 5G: This is the super fast version of 5G. It doesn’t penetrate buildings really well, if at all. And it doesn’t go that far as it only has a practical range of maybe hundreds of feet and it requires a clear sight line to the antenna of the cell phone with absolutely no obstructions. But it is super fast capable of delivering gigabit or faster speeds.

Now only the US has mmWave 5G. And besides being the only place on the planet that a has mmWave 5G, they have it in very limited locations at present. The rest of the planet who is deploying 5G in the Sub-6 variety. That’s what Canada is doing and it makes sense. By deploying Sub-6, people who never had fast wireless data, or wireless data at all will be able to get it. Canada will likely get mmWave in the next 3 to 5 years, but its use case will likely be limited to high density areas like stadiums and shopping malls. Sub-6 is far more practical for Canada given the topography of Canada.

Now that I have the background out of the way, what can you actually expect to see when it comes to 5G in Canada? I’m on the TELUS network and that network promises speeds of up to 1.7 Gbps under the following conditions:

Network speeds vary with location, signal and customer device. Compatible device required. Manufacturer’s rated peak download speeds: 5G, up to 1700 Mbps, LTE Advanced, up to 1500 Mbps; LTE, up to 150 Mbps; HSPA+, up to 42 Mbps. Average expected speeds: LTE Advanced, 12-300 Mbps; LTE, 12-45 Mbps; HSPA+, 4-14 Mbps. 5G speed available in select areas including Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver. LTE Advanced speed available in select areas across Canada.

In short, assuming that you have a 5G capable device, you will likely get speeds of UP TO 1.7 Gbps. But chances are that it will be slower. Assuming that you are in a 5G area. I suspect that is due to the fact that TELUS is still building out their 5G network. And my testing seems to make that theory plausible. For example, I live in the Toronto suburb of Etobicoke in a location that sits between a 4G and 5G zone according to the TELUS coverage map. If I walk five minutes to the east of my condo building, I will get 4G. If I walk five minutes to the west of my condo building, I will get 5G. But when I get 5G, these are the speeds that I see. This is what I get in central Etobicoke:

To give you some perspective, this is what I got on the TELUS 4G LTE network:

In short, you will get faster speeds with 5G, but you shouldn’t expect a night and day difference. At least not yet.

The 5G speeds seem rather consistent regardless of where I did my testing. This is what I got in Downtown Toronto:

This is what I got at Sherway Gardens which is in the west end of Etobicoke:

In pretty much any location that I tested in that had 5G service, I saw speeds from the mid 300 Mbps to the mid 400 Mbps. That suggests to me that right now, 5G is a work in progress as these speeds and the consistency of these speeds seem to be what you see when you cap speeds for stability purposes as the network is being built out. That’s not unusual as I saw something similar when LTE was being deployed in Canada. That means that the TELUS 5G network will only get faster as their network expands. Which is a good thing for those on the TELUS network. I also expect other carriers such as Bell and Rogers to be the same.

There’s one other thing that I should point out, 5G on the TELUS network is only available in the following cities as I type this:

  • Vancouver
  • Calgary
  • Edmonton
  • Toronto
  • Mississauga
  • Oakville
  • Brampton
  • Markham
  • Windsor
  • Montreal
  • Saint Georges
  • Rimouski
  • Gaspe
  • Baie-Comeau
  • Sept-Iles

That list will grow over time. And more Canadians will benefit from having 5G. And I am not including 5G on Rogers or Bell which likely has additional cities that support 5G.

The bottom line is this. 5G is the future. But depending on where you live, the future isn’t here quite yet. I would say that people need to be patient as 5G develops in Canada. It may take a bit of time, but it will be game changing when the future arrives.

Google Pixel 5 Is Now Available On The TELUS 5G Network

Posted in Commentary with tags , on October 29, 2020 by itnerd

The Google Pixel 5 is now available at TELUS. The latest 5G enabled device allows for fast downloads and streaming all for $0 upfront with TELUS Easy Payment® on the fastest 5G network in Canada providing speeds up to 1.7 Gbps.

The Pixel 5 is the phone made the Google way – bringing together the best of Google hardware, software and AI together – all at an affordable price. Key features include: 

  • A camera that helps you take your best shots. Have a photo shoot day or night, capture moments with stunning clarity, and  take clips with Hollywood-inspired effects.
  • A phone that’s also a wireless charger. Charge wirelessly, stay powered up all day, and get up to 48 hours of battery life when you need it most with Extreme Battery Saver.
  • Protection from security threats and water spills. A water-resistant metal body and superhero-level security chip help ensure that your data, and device, stay protected.

TELUS 5G will be available at no additional cost on TELUS Peace of Mind plans, starting at only $75/20GB of high-speed data until October 31, with endless data and no overage fees.

New TELUS Online Security Helps To Protect Canadian Consumers

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 29, 2020 by itnerd

Nearly nine in ten Canadians wish their internet was more secure, but only 18 percent report using tools to protect their identity online2. To enable Canadians with tools to protect themselves, TELUS, a world-leading communications and information technology company, today announced that TELUS Online Security Powered by NortonLifeLock is now available throughout Canada. TELUS Online Security, Canada’s most comprehensive all-in-one protection3, features Cyber Safety and privacy solutions from NortonLifeLock to help Canadians protect their identity, devices, and online privacy. TELUS Online Security was previously available only to TELUS Internet customers in B.C. and Alberta.

Thousands of Canadians have collectively lost more than $60 million to fraud this year alone1. Scams related to COVID-19 have been a major contributor, with 42 per cent of Canadians having experienced at least one type of cyber security incident since the pandemic began5.

TELUS Online Security is available in three plan options to help ensure customers can choose the solution that best fits their needs:

TELUS Online Security Ultimate

  • All-in-one protection for your connected devices and online privacy and identity. Up to 20 devices are protected from viruses, ransomware, and other online threats.
  • Defends your online privacy with bank-grade encryption when connecting to Wi-Fi with Secure VPN.
  • Should you become a victim of identity theft, an Identity Restoration Specialist will work with you to help resolve it. And, you’re covered for qualified Personal Expense Reimbursement plus Coverage for Lawyers and Experts up to $1 million4.

TELUS Online Security Complete

  • All-in-one protection for your connected devices and online privacy and identity. Up to 10 devices are protected from viruses, ransomware, and other online threats.
  • Defends your online privacy with bank-grade encryption when connecting to Wi-Fi with Secure VPN.
  • Should you become a victim of identity theft, an Identity Restoration Specialist will work with you to help resolve it. And, you’re covered for qualified Personal Expense Reimbursement plus Coverage for Lawyers and Experts up to $100,0004.

TELUS Online Security Standard

  • All-in-one protection for your connected devices and online privacy and identity. Up to 2 devices are protected from viruses, ransomware, and other online threats.
  • Defends your online privacy with bank-grade encryption when connecting to Wi-Fi with Secure VPN.
  • Should you become a victim of identity theft, the Identity Theft Reimbursement Coverage is there to help with coverage for qualified Personal Expense Reimbursement plus Coverage for Lawyers and Experts up to $25,0004.

At this time, TELUS Online Security is not available in Quebec. For more information, please visit telus.com/onlinesecurity.

*No one can prevent all cyber crime or identity theft.

1 Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, https://www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca/index-eng.htm

2 Angus Reid report commissioned by TELUS.

3 Applies to TELUS Online Security Standard plan and above.

4 The Identity Theft Reimbursement Coverage, with a limit of up to $25,000 for Basic Plus, up to $100,000 for Premium and up to $1 Million for Premium Plus, is underwritten and administered by American Bankers Insurance Company of Florida, an Assurant company. Please refer to the actual policies for terms, conditions, and exclusions of coverage. Coverage may not be available in all jurisdictions. Review the Summary of Benefits under the Insurance Coverage (Canada) here.

5 Statistics Canada, “Canadians spend more money and time online during pandemic and over two-fifths report a cyber incident,” https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/daily-quotidien/201014/dq201014a-eng.htm

TELUS & Calm Sign Global-First Agreement To Deliver Content For Better Mental Health Through A TV Service

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 28, 2020 by itnerd

Strengthening its commitment to improving the health of all Canadians, TELUS today announced a global-first agreement with www.calm.com, the award-winning mental fitness app, to bring sleep, meditation and relaxation content into the homes of Optik TV and Pik TV customers, through the TELUS Healthy Living Network.

This collaboration is the first of its kind for Calm and will enable TELUS to provide mental health resources to Canadians of all ages as they deal with the stresses brought on by life during the COVID-19 pandemic. The content, which is free for all Optik TV and Pik TV subscribers, includes guided meditations, breathing exercises, and Calm’s Sleep StoriesTM, bedtime stories for grown ups.

By partnering with Calm, TELUS is once again stepping up to support Canadians, and there couldn’t be a better time. With more than 90 million app downloads, Calm is the number one mental fitness app helping users sleep more, stress less, and live better.

Since March, individuals and families across Canada have had to adapt to increased physical and social isolation, economic downturn, and changing expectations at school, work, and home. As Canada is in the second wave of COVID-19, many are very concerned about the challenges ahead. Nearly twenty-five percent of Canadians reported being very or extremely stressed about the pandemic, according to an Angus Reid poll conducted last month. As people look for ways to adapt to these new stresses, proactive mental healthcare is more important than ever.

TechSee Closes $30M Series C Investment Round To Accelerate Growth

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 26, 2020 by itnerd

TechSee, the category leader in Intelligent Visual Assistance, today announced it has raised $30 million in a Series C equity investment round. The round was co-led by OurCrowd, Salesforce Ventures, and TELUS Ventures with participation from Scale Venture Partners and Planven Entrepreneur Ventures. 

Founded in 2015, the Tel Aviv-based company has grown rapidly by reducing customer friction points for enterprises. Its Visual Assistance technology bridges the visual gap in customer service, allowing customers and technicians to receive real-time AR guidance on their smartphone or tablet screens in assisted service or self-service mode. The company is also innovating in the field of Computer Vision AI with technology that can provide visual guidance to users installing, operating, or troubleshooting networking devices, smart home products, home appliances, and more. TechSee’s AI platform can automatically identify components, ports, cables, LED indicators, and more to detect issues and suggest resolutions for consumers, contact center agents, and field technicians. 

TechSee’s solutions have become critical during the COVID-19 pandemic as enterprises seek ways to resolve customers’ issues without jeopardizing health and safety; dispatching field service technicians or allowing them to enter people’s homes is, in many cases, no longer viable. Even when in-person visits are feasible, businesses are actively seeking ways to reduce truck rolls in favor of remote resolutions that are more cost effective and efficient. TechSee recently announced a commercial partnership withVerizon to address this issue by bringing visual assistance to customers. 

Additional commercial partnerships include Vodafone, Orange, Liberty Global, Accenture, Hitachi, and Lavazza, among others. 

TechSee addresses many of the issues that have historically plagued contact centers and field service operations. Its technology reduces customer effort, cuts costly truck rolls and product returns, improves the productivity and efficiency of support agents and technicians, and decreases call volume by enhancing self-service, in some cases saving companies hundreds of thousands of dollars per month while improving customer satisfaction and employee engagement.

The capital injection will be used to enter new markets and verticals while expanding TechSee’s product offerings and capabilities. 

TechSee’s technology was recently recognized in the Gartner Cool Vendor for CRM Customer Service and Support 2020 report. The company, which has raised $54 million in funding to date, was also named toFast Company’s list of most innovative companies of 2020, and took home TMC’s 21st Anniversary CRM Excellence Award.

For more information, visit techsee.me.

TELUS Launches Mental Health App For Canada’s Frontline Workers

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 22, 2020 by itnerd

In support of the well-being of Canada’s frontline workers, TELUS today announced the launch of Espri by TELUS Health, a mobile app that delivers mental health and wellness resources to support the rising mental health pressures faced by physicians, nurses, care workers, emergency medical services, firefighters, police, correctional officers, and their family members.

Frontline workers are exposed to incidents of trauma, violence, and grief, making them more likely to experience mental health issues:

  • In 2017, a study in the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry found that 44.5 per cent of first responders, including paramedics, police officers, and firefighters, screened positive for symptoms consistent with mental disorder, four times higher than the general population (10 per cent).
  • Similarly, the Canadian Medical Association’s 2018 National Physician Health Survey reported that one in four physicians experience high levels of burnout, with others reporting signs of depression and addiction.

Frontline workers also face considerable barriers and stigma to accessing mental health resources.

Developed in conjunction with first responders and under the guidance of specially-trained clinicians who are occupationally-aware and understand the needs of frontline workers, Espri by TELUS Health provides timely access to features and tools for mental wellness as well as support for crisis and prevention including:

  • Learn: A resource hub that provides quick access to relevant, clinically-informed, and occupation-specific content from the organization, TELUS Health, and/or third party providers.
  • My Plan: A goal-setting tool that helps workers build positive habits by setting and completing mental health and wellness goals
  • Group video: A video call feature that enables organizations to host virtual one-on-one, peer and group therapeutic sessions and educational programming while allowing consent-based, anonymous participation, protecting users’ safety and identity
  • Get Support: A resource list that offers one-click navigation to an organization’s preferred support resources, such as crisis lines, employee and family assistance programs, critical incident stress programs and access to healthcare professionals including psychiatrists, psychologists and mental health experts.

TELUS aims to work closely with organizations to incorporate Espri by TELUS Health into their mental health strategies. Eligible frontline workers will be able to access the app through their employer or member organization.

TELUS To Offer iPhone 12 Pro & iPhone 12 On The World’s Fastest Network Starting Today

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 16, 2020 by itnerd

TELUS will offer the new iPhone 12 lineup, including iPhone 12 Pro, iPhone 12 Pro Max, iPhone 12, and iPhone 12 mini all on the fastest network in Canada and the world, covering 99 per cent Canadians from coast to coast. With a beautiful all-new design, iPhone 12 models feature an unparalleled new camera systems, edge-to-edge Super Retina XDR displays for a more immersive viewing experience, the biggest jump in durability with the Ceramic Shield front cover, and Apple-designed A14 Bionic chip, the fastest chip in a smartphone. TELUS customers can now order iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 starting today, with availability on October 23. In addition, customers will be able to order iPhone 12 Pro Max and iPhone 12 mini beginning on November 6, with availability on November 13. For complete pricing and availability details, please visit telus.com/iphone12pro.

TELUS 5G will be available at no additional cost on TELUS Peace of Mind plans, starting at only $75/20GB of high-speed data until October 31, with endless data and no overage fees. Moreover, customers can connect their smartphones, tablets, smartwatches, TELUS Drive+, and TELUS Track+ all to a single plan with TELUS’ exclusive Peace of Mind Connect plans starting at $85/20GB per month. With endless data, customers can continue to stream, share, and stay connected across all of their devices as much as they want without worrying about overages.

TELUS customers can also take advantage of our Bring-It-Back™ program and receive up to $630 off depending on the device, when they agree to return it in good working condition to TELUS at the end of their two-year term. To save even more, customers can sign up for TELUS’ Trade-In Program, where customers will receive a credit for their old device, up to $825.

New TELUS Owner’s Advantage Plan Gives Canadian Business Owners Exclusive Benefits

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 15, 2020 by itnerd

In celebration of Small Business Month, TELUS announced the launch of The Owner’s Advantage Plan, a new mobility plan for business customers that includes a variety of exclusive benefits designed to provide greater value and more flexibility than ever before. Here’s an overview of the key features:

  • Upgrade every year: Stay ahead of the competition and upgrade your smartphone to the latest and most advanced 5G smartphones every year.
  • Same day device repair: Quickly reconnect with same day screen repair included in your plan and available at more than 80 Mobile Klinik locations nationwide.
  • Fastest customer support: Save time and get back to running your business faster with front of the line access to customer support. 
  • Endless data: Plan includes 50GB of high speed data and no overage charges for added peace of mind, all on the fastest mobile network in the world. 
  • TELUS Health Virtual Care: Owners get one year of complimentary access to on-demand virtual healthcare service, Akira, for themselves, their family, and up to ten of their employees – 24/7, 365 days a year, in English and French.

For a limited time as part of Small Business Month, the Owner’s Advantage plan is $110/month (regular price $120/month), plus the monthly cost of your device. For the latest information about the Owner’s Advantage Plan, please visit: www.telus.com/ownersadvantage.