Archive for Telus

New Technology From TELUS Health Lets Saskatchewan Health Authority Remotely Monitor Lung Transplant Patients

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 11, 2020 by itnerd

TELUS Health today announced the expansion of its Home Health Monitoring (HHM) solution to digitally monitor the recovery of lung transplant patients across Saskatchewan. Launched in partnership with the Saskatchewan Health Authority and eHealth Saskatchewan, this digital health dashboard enables a virtual healthcare team to provide medical support remotely, for patients in real-time as they recover in their own homes.

Easily accessible through a mobile device, tablet or desktop computer, the TELUS Health HHM solution sends daily prompts to patients to report their biometrics such as spirometry (i.e. lung function), blood pressure and overall health condition. If patients do not have their own digital health tools, they are provided with biometric devices such as bluetooth-connected weight scales and blood pressure cuffs in order to monitor their vitals and enter them into their daily report. This data then is sent electronically to the care team so it can be viewed on the digital dashboard, allowing regular and remote monitoring of a patient’s well-being. This gives clinicians the ability to review crucial patient data in real-time, allowing them to identify any urgent care needs and mitigate risks such as possible infection, incision issues, and/or neurocognitive impairment.

Transplant patients have compromised immune systems, particularly during the first month following the transplant operation due to the use of immunosuppressant medication to help prevent the body’s rejection of a donor organ. Monitoring vitals is crucial to a healthy recovery as is ensuring patients can recover in the safety of their own homes amidst the current pandemic so there is no increased risk of exposure to the virus. HHM helps give patients peace of mind knowing they are still connected to their healthcare team for monitoring without having to physically remain in hospital.

It is estimated that the TELUS Health HHM solution and lung transplant monitoring program will support 60 to 70 Saskatchewanians for the lifetime of their transplant. Ongoing discussions are underway to expand the use of HHM for the remote monitoring of individuals with heart conditions and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). 

The launch of the HHM solution for transplant patients is another collaboration between TELUS Health and Saskatchewan’s public health system. In October 2019, the Saskatchewan government launched MySaskHealthRecord, a website that enables Saskatchewan residents to easily access their personal health information, including medical imaging results, laboratory tests and clinical visit history.

The TELUS Health HHM solution has been used in British Columbia since 2013 to remotely monitor thousands of patients living with chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart failure and respiratory diseases. Of those with heart or respiratory issues, 81 per cent reported fewer emergency room visits and 92 per cent reported fewer hospital admissions. The solution is currently being used in B.C. and other provinces to support those with or at a high risk of contracting COVID-19.  Over 1400 BC Citizens have been monitored for COVID-19 to date. 

Building off of these successful initiatives in B.C. and Saskatchewan, discussions with other provincial health authorities are underway to provide HHM technology to even more Canadians in various areas of care.

Bell Chooses Ericsson As 5G Equipment Supplier…. Telus Announces Ericsson and Nokia As 5G Equipment Suppliers….. And Huawei Is Out…. Maybe….

Posted in Commentary with tags , on June 3, 2020 by itnerd

Yesterday, Bell dropped a press release announcing that they were going with Ericsson for their 5G network. What’s significant about this is that Bell is, or I guess was a Huawei customer. I am guessing that Bell made the decision that dealing with Huawei isn’t good for business. Thus they made the switch to Ericsson.

So with this move by Bell, and the fact that Rogers has also tapped Ericsson for their 5G network, the last of the “big three” telcos to be working on a 5G rollout is TELUS. They also dropped a press release of their own yesterday announcing Ericsson and Nokia as partners to build their 5G network. Here’s where things get weird. Earlier this year TELUS announced that Huawei would supply gear for its 5G rollout. Something that did not go over well with customers. Which suggests that TELUS is not proceeding with Huawei. Or it suggests that this is in addition to the Huawei gear that they announced that they were going to use earlier this year. It isn’t clear, and I am already seeing backlash from TELUS customers who think that TELUS is still using Huawei gear. Which makes TELUS look bad. Thus if I could give TELUS some advice, they might want to clear that up and do so quickly.

Thus it appears that Huawei is maybe being dumped by “big three” telcos. They definitely are not being used by two of them for sure. This makes me wonder what future Huawei has in Canada. It also makes me wonder if a decision on Huawei is coming from the Canadian government as it is kind of coincidental that both of these telcos came out with announcements that appear to leave Huawei in the cold on the same day.

TELUS Highlighted By Opensignal As Having The Fastest Network In Rural Canada

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

Canada’s rural download speeds have been heralded as some of the fastest in the world, outpacing five of the G7 countries in Opensignal’s State of Rural Canada’s Mobile Network Experience. TELUS specifically was recognized as having the fastest network in rural Canada with an overall speed of 48 Mbps. Among the G7, only Japanese users experienced a higher speed than some rural Canadians, with an overall download speed of 49 Mbps. Canadians on the TELUS network saw the largest increase in download speeds in the first quarter of 2020, as compared to 2019, at 71%.

Notably in Opensignal’s recent State of Mobile Network Experience 2020 report, Canada’s average download speeds at 59.6 Mbps narrowly outpaced South Korea’s at 59.0 Mbps respectively, signalling the strength of Canada’s global-leading mobile networks. In 2019, TELUS was recognized by industry-leading experts, including Opensignal, Ookla, J.D. Power, PCMag, and Tutela, building on an outstanding record of achievement, having earned the top spot in four out of five of the major mobile network reports for the third consecutive year in a row or more.

Since 2000, TELUS has invested almost $200 billion in network infrastructure, spectrum, and operations to enhance the coverage, speed, and reliability of its world-class network and connect customers from coast to coast to coast. TELUS has committed to invest a further $40 billion over the next three years in critical technology components to support the roll out of 5G networks which will enhance innovation and help drive digital development across industries in a new age of hyper-connectedness. Connecting rural communities requires the joint effort and investment from facilities-based carriers and governments to ensure that all Canadians have access to the coverage, speed, and reliability they deserve.

Motorola Razr Flip Phone Is Now Available At TELUS

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 17, 2020 by itnerd

The Motorola Razr is now available in-store at TELUS starting at $0 upfront withTELUS Easy Payment®, which allows customers to get any smartphone in their lineup for as little as $0 upfront, combined with new Peace of Mind rate plans that offer endless data without having to worry about overage charges. 

The iconic flip phone is re-invented for today. The new Motorola razr shatters the status quo with a flexible display that, impossibly, folds completely in half. Here’s a few of its core features:

  • An iconic flip phone, re-invented. Compact and pocket-ready design flips open to reveal a full-length touch screen with all the latest tech.
  • 6.2″ cinematic Flex View display. Groundbreaking flexible OLED screen folds completely in half. Flip open to watch videos in ultra-wide CinemaVision.
  • Interactive Quick View display. Respond to notifications, take selfies, make mobile payments and more, all without ever opening the phone.

More information is available here.

TELUS Again Ranked Canada’s Fastest Mobile Network

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 9, 2020 by itnerd

TELUS announced today that it has been recognized in Tutela’s Canada State of Mobile Networks Report April 2020, winning three of the national awards for Core Consistent Quality, Download Throughput, and Latency, and tying for Excellent Consistent Quality. Canada also places first for 4G Download Speeds according toOpensignal’s Mobile Experience report during the COVID-19 pandemic. The achievements solidify the strength of TELUS’ wireless network across the country, which has proven more critical than ever as Canadians rely on mobile networks to stay connected to loved ones and vital information during these unprecedented times.

Opensignal is monitoring global trends, and in particular, the effect of increased use of mobile telecom during the COVID-19 pandemic. They highlight that there is a sharp increase in mobile data consumption globally. Their report shows that Canada’s networks are continuing to operate very well. Canada is by far the fastest across 45 countries tested for 4G download speeds for mobile experience and had virtually no change between January, and the last week of March, when all Canadians were following social distancing protocols.

TELUS’ wireless and wireline networks continue to serve Canadians well during COVID-19. Usage has spiked considerably as Canadians stay home and keep connected to school, work, and friends and family. We continue to grow and maintain capacities that support TELUS’ strict network resiliency and world class performance standards to ensure that our customers have a seamless, un-interrupted experience in these challenging times.

The recognition from Tutela accompanies the significant, sustained accolades TELUS has earned over the years in respect of our world-leading wireless network. In 2019, TELUS was recognized by other industry-leading experts, including Opensignal, Ookla, J.D. Power, PCMag, and Tutela, building on an outstanding record of achievement with respect to network excellence, having earned the top spot in four out of five of the major mobile network reporting for the third consecutive year in a row or more. Notably, these awards are based on TELUS’ national networks, inclusive of both urban and rural coverage. 

Since 2000, TELUS has invested almost $200 billion in network infrastructure, spectrum, and operations to enhance the coverage, speed, and reliability of its world-class network and connect customers from coast to coast to coast. TELUS has committed to invest a further $40 billion over the next three years in critical technology components to support the roll out of 5G networks which will enhance innovation and help drive digital development across industries in a new age of hyper-connectedness. 

TELUS Health Enables Canadian Family Doctors To Conduct Virtual Visits With Their Patients

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 8, 2020 by itnerd

TELUS Health announced today that it is enabling 26,000 Canadian family doctors to conduct virtual visits with their patients by seamlessly integrating this functionality into its electronic medical records (EMRs) offering. TELUS Health has accelerated the development of this virtual video functionality in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, now that physicians in Ontario and across the country can use virtual care fee codes. Offered as a free service for the first four months, this new feature allows physicians to virtually support their own roster of patients while maintaining continuity of care and fully up-to-date health records.

The new virtual care feature empowers physicians to book appointments, conduct video consultations and update patient records all within their EMR. Available from desktop, smartphone or tablet, the fully integrated virtual visit feature is mobile and eliminates the need to switch between multiple digital tools for seamless workflow, easing the burden on physicians and allowing them to focus more of their time on patient care. The intuitive video call interface can then be placed side-by-side with the physician’s other EMR features, allowing them to take notes and review patient records at the same time. Meanwhile, patients can open the appointment link from their web browser, whether on their desktop computer or mobile device, and have the video appointment with their primary care physician. The feature offers both full audio and video capabilities, as well as a chat function through which written messages can be exchanged.

TELUS Health is a leader in digital health technology solutions such as home health monitoring, electronic medical and health records, virtual care, benefits and pharmacy management as well as personal emergency response services. TELUS Health is leveraging the power of technology to improve access to care and revolutionize the flow of health information to create better outcomes for Canadians while facilitating collaboration, efficiency and productivity for physicians, pharmacists, health authorities, allied healthcare professionals, insurers, employers and citizens. TELUS Payment Solutions complements our health solutions by delivering secure, industry-compliant payment and lending solutions that connect lenders, payors, insurers, extended health care providers and financial institutions to their customers across Canada.

For more information please visit: www.telushealth.com and www.telus.com/payment-solutions.

TELUS donates $500,000 to support global-leading research team develop antiviral treatments for COVID-19

Posted in Commentary with tags on March 27, 2020 by itnerd

TELUS today announced a $500,000 donation to the Vancouver Prostate Centre (VPC), Vancouver General Hospital (VGH) and University of British Columbia (UBC) Hospital Foundation to assist in the search for therapeutic antiviral treatments for COVID-19. Led by Professor Art Cherkasov, VPC and UBC scientists have joined forces with experts around the world including collaborations with Cambridge in the UK, Memorial Sloan-Kettering in New York, University of North Carolina Pharma Science, and Enamine, the biggest small molecule supplier in the world, in the Ukraine. This Vancouver-led team brings together some of the best talent in the world in medicinal chemistry and virology.

Research teams around the world are seeking development of vaccines, antibodies or protease inhibitors. The VPC’s cutting-edge platforms, highly developed for precision cancer drug discovery, have been rapidly repurposed to address today’s health crisis by shaving significant time off the process of finding a cure for COVID-19. VPC, with its expertise, facilities and capabilities in cutting edge Artificial Intelligence (AI), is poised to make a remarkable difference in the global race for an anti-protease treatment for COVID-19. Its unique AI system allowed for accelerated computerized screening of 1.3 billion chemicals to create a shortlist of 100 potential therapeutic compounds in one week, as opposed to conventional methods that could take up to three years.

Organizations interested in funding this critical research can learn more by visiting https://vghfoundation.ca/COVID-19-response/. To learn more about the research visit www.prostatecentre.com.

For the latest information about TELUS’ support during the crisis, visit telus.com/covid19.

 

SIM Swap Scams – How To Protect Yourself

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

Right now the newest way for scammers to separate you from your money is the SIM swap scam. Here’s how the scam works.

  • A fraudster gathers personal details about the victim, either by use of phishing emails, by buying them from organised criminals, or by directly socially engineering the victim.
  • Once the fraudster has obtained these details, they then contact the victim’s mobile telephone provider. The fraudster uses social engineering techniques to convince the telephone company to port the victim’s phone number to the fraudster’s SIM. This is done, for example, by impersonating the victim using personal details to appear authentic and claiming that they have lost their phone.
  • Once this happens the victim’s phone will lose connection to the network and the fraudster will receive all the SMS and voice calls intended for the victim. This allows the fraudster to intercept any one-time passwords sent via text or telephone calls sent to the victim, and thus to circumvent any security features of accounts that are associated with the phone. Be they bank accounts, social media accounts, etc.

There have been a growing number of cases of this scam happening in Canada, US and other places. I have heard of bank accounts being drained and the take over of social media accounts. The most famous of these is the take over of Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s Twitter account a few months ago.

Clearly this is a scam that you need to keep an eye on due to the impact that it can have on your life. The question is, how do you protect yourself from being a victim? To help with that, I reached out to TELUS as they have programs to help Canadians protect themselves online. Most notably TELUS Wise. They were kind enough to point me to a number of tools on their website that can help guide consumers on how to protect themselves from scams in general. But they also provided a few tips specific to SIM swap scams:

  • Limit the amount of personal information about you online. Be careful to not click on phishing emails (and texts) that ask you to provide and/or validate private information.
  • Don’t add your phone number to any online accounts where it is not necessary.
  • Use strong and unique passwords for each of your accounts.
  • Set up authentication methods that aren’t text based only.
  • If you think something is awry and/or if you can’t make or receive phone calls on your device, contact your wireless provider immediately.
  • Report the fraud to your local police and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501. Notify your bank and credit card companies. Contact the two national credit bureaus to request a copy of your credit reports and place a fraud warning on your file (Equifax Canada Toll free:1-800-465-7166 and TransUnion Canada Toll free: 1-877-525-3823).

Besides the above, one other thing that I do recommend is that you set up a PIN or a security code with your wireless provider. That way if someone tries to access your account to try and pull off a SIM swap, they’ll run into a brick wall as they won’t have the PIN. TELUS offers this security feature (In fact, when I signed up with TELUS, I had to come up with a PIN on the spot), and I have to assume that other wireless providers do as well. Thus you should contact them to see how you can set this up on your account.

SIM swap scams are on the rise. But the good news is that by taking the above steps, you can reduce the risk that you will be a victim.

 

 

Samsung Galaxy S20 Series Is Now Available At TELUS

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

TELUS dropped me a note to let me know that the Samsung Galaxy S20 5G, Samsung Galaxy S20+ 5G and Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G devices are now available in-store at TELUS starting at $0 upfront with TELUS Easy Payment, which allows customers to get any smartphone in our lineup for as little as $0 upfront, combined with new Peace of Mind rate plans that offer endless data without having to worry about overage charges.

The next generation of Galaxy is here with key features, including:

  • 108MP0 High Resolution Camera – Millions of pixels for infinitely more definition, capturing richer colours, deeper shadows and finer details.
  • 100x Space Zoom – Get closer to the action with a precise telephoto lens and 100x space zoom
  • Bright Night – Make every low light shot a highlight with low light or no light, capture pro-grade video and vivid photos without flash

Visit your local TELUS store or go to TELUS.com for more details.

 

Why Is TELUS Announcing A 5G Partnership With Huawei?

Posted in Commentary with tags on February 14, 2020 by itnerd

Yesterday, the news dropped that TELUS was announcing that they were going to build their 5G network in partnership with Huawei. The same Huawei that the US hates and wants everyone else to dump. It’s also the same Huawei that the Canadian government is doing a security review of. Here’s the key point from yesterday’s news:

[Doug] French [CFO – TELUS] said that the plan right now is to use Huawei gear in the radio access network (RAN) — basically, the antennas that send wireless signals to the phones — but it will not be the backbone of the Telus 5G network for now.

“In the RAN network, we will be launching a 5G network with Huawei,” French said.

Telus wouldn’t give an exact date on when they will roll out their 5G, but French said it will be coming “shortly.”

This is kind of similar to what the English are doing. Much to the ire of the US. But the real question is, why would TELUS poke the stick in the metaphorical cage by making this announcement? Well, I have some thoughts on that:

  1. This basically forces the Canadian government to make a call on Huawei. Something that they have been reluctant to do because they are working to extradite Meng Wanzhou who is the CFO of Huawei to the US to stand trial over Iran sanctions violations among other things. And in retaliation the Chinese government is holding two Canadians to force the Canadian government to release her. Now with the announcement made by TELUS, the option of waiting for that situation to be resolved is off the table. And the Canadian government has to make a call sooner rather than later.
  2. TELUS couldn’t afford to wait for a decision to be made as Rogers has already announced their 5G plans with Ericsson being their supplier. And Bell has made their announcement with Nokia being their supplier. Thus TELUS might have felt that they had no choice to make an announcement and see what happened next.
  3. TELUS is already a big Huawei customer as their 4G network has a lot of their gear in it. So they might have felt that they had no choice to use their 5G gear so that interoperability between 5G and 4G networks was seamless. Plus going with another vendor at this point would likely cause TELUS a lot of headaches and cost TELUS a lot of cash.

Here’s the risk for TELUS. Besides the fact that the Canadian government decideing to ban Huawei from selling anyone 5G gear, which would pretty much screw over TELUS. There’s the consumer backlash:

For clarity, the two Michael’s that are referred to in this tweet are Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor who are being held by the Chinese government in retaliation for the arrest of Meng Wanzhou who is the CFO of Huawei.

The fact is that TELUS has done a lot over the last few years to differentiate themselves from Rogers and Bell in very positive ways. And their network is insanely fast relative to the other two members of the big three. But they risk burning all of that to the ground via this decision. But, if you look at it another way, they are third place and they must figure that they have nothing to lose by going down this road.

So what do I think?

I think it would be wise for TELUS to rethink this. According to a recent Angus Reid Institute study. 56 percent of Canadians believe that Huawei should be banned from participating in the deployment of 5G. That’s not trivial. Neither is the fact that about 34 percent would support a limited arrangement similar to the one the U.K. What that says to me is that most Canadians have some sort of problem with Huawei. Thus alienating most of your potential customer base because you want to do business with Huawei isn’t a good idea. Which means that they need in my opinion to take a step back and consider the implications of doing business with Huawei. To me, it doesn’t really seem to be a good idea as the risk level on multiple fronts is way too high.