Jonathan Camp - Socket's You-Make-The-Difference Winner for November 2013


Jonathan Camp - Socket YMTD Award - November 2013In November, we honored Jonathan Camp with our monthly You-Make-the-Difference Award.

 
"Jonathan Camp is an excellent tech. Not only that, he is an excellent human being," said a co-worker who nominated him for the award. "He is the personification of customer service and tech support excellence."
 

Jon came to Socket in May 2011 because he wanted to be part of a growing company with an emphasis on customer service. He also thought it'd be a great place to apply his knowledge in networking. Jon currently serves as a Tier 1 Business Analyst, where he helps ensure services are working properly for Socket's business clients.
 

Originally from Columbia, Jon likes to spend his free time reading comics, playing video games, and playing with his band.
 

Asked about how it felt to win the YMTD award, Jon simply said, "I think it's pretty sweet!"
 

Congratulations, Jon!

  

How Much Space Does Your Website Need?


As Internet users expect more multimedia content, many businesses are adding video and audio files to their websites. However, it is important to ensure your Web hosting space can handle extra traffic before adding any type of multimedia content.

Before adding content, make sure you have the space to do so before you prevent yourself from receiving email, run out of space halfway through the files you want to add, or worse, crash your website.

Check the size of your website.
This is the total amount of disk space that your entire website takes up, including all text, images and multimedia files.

To check your website’s size, simply select the file it’s saved in and check the file properties. Most sites are well below 1 GB (Socket’s basic web hosting space) but video and audio content can rapidly inflate that number. Be prepared to upgrade if you plan to significantly expand multimedia content.

Ensure adequate transfer bandwidth.
The amount of transfer bandwidth— or network traffic—needed in a Web hosting package depends on both the website’s size and the number of visitors expected.

For most websites with text and images, 3-5 GB should be plenty. If users are expected to download large multimedia files, or if more than 500 visitors are expected per day, consider a package with more transfer bandwidth.

Zaza Tugushi - Socket's You-Make-the-Difference Award Winner for October 2013


Zaza TugushiIn October, we honored Zaza Tugushi with our monthly You-Make-the-Difference Award.
 
Zaza is a busy guy. During the day at work, he's giving 100% to scheduling installs, coordinating dispatches and resolving customer issues.
 

"Zaza is an amazing project manager," said a co-worker who nominated him for the award. "I'm sure his job can be stressful, but he never seems to get rattled by the constant changes."
 
Zaza has been a Socketeer since March 2008, beginning first in residential customer service and sales before moving to the business center in 2009. He's now a service delivery coordinator and coordinates installs and dispatches for our business customers.
 
Originally from Georgia (the country, not the state!) - Zaza studied at Columbia College before going on to receive his MBA at Mizzou. He and his wife, Molly, are expecting their first child in December. In his spare time, Zaza also likes to fiddle with an old car, computers and his house.
 
Congratulations, Zaza!
 
 

 

It's Gimme Fiber Day!


The Fiber to the Home Council has declared Monday, November 4 as Gimme Fiber Day!
 
We're excited to be doing just that, with a state-of-the-art network delivering fiber-optic broadband services for businesses and residents in Callaway and Boone Counties. We hope to expand that access in the future to even more areas.
 
Head over to www.socket.net/fiber to learn more about the project and to find out if you're in the coverage area. If you're not, enter your address so we can log your interest. This will help us determine where to expand our network in the future, so tell your friends and neighbors to enter their addresses, too!
 
Fiber supports faster Internet and more bandwidth, which will become increasingly important as the Web evolves. As more people are choosing to stream high-definition videos, connect gaming systems to the Internet and perform other high-bandwidth activities online, fiber can provide the broadband technology necessary to support all of these applications in a way that cable, DSL and wireless simply cannot.
 
We hope to bring fiber to many more areas in the future!
 
 
 

Socket Sponsors the Trick or Trot 5K in Sedalia


High winds and chilly temperatures made for quite the morning in Sedalia; it certainly didn’t dampen anyone’s festive spirits, though!
 
We were proud to help sponsor the inaugural Trick or Trot 5K, supporting Bothwell Regional’s Cancer Fund, last Saturday morning. And the cold weather didn’t seem to stop anyone from dressing up in their Halloween best, from zombie businessmen to tiny toddler superheroes. The 5K was followed by a costume contest, and the Monster Dash Kid’s Fun Run.
 
While we didn’t run in the 5K, we were still on hand to distribute delicious Halloween candy to the participants. Because who doesn’t want to gorge on Tootsie Rolls after running 3.1 miles? Maybe next year we’ll think about water bottles or something more nutritious… but that doesn’t sound nearly as fun.
 
We also raffled off a $50 gift card to Kehde’s BBQ. Congratulations to our winner, Becky V. of Sedalia!
 
A big thank you to KIX 105 FM for hosting this event, and letting us be a part of it. We had a ton of fun, and can’t wait to see you all for the next one!

Travis Baugh - Socket's You-Make-the-Difference Award Winner for September 2013


Travis Baugh - Socket YMTD Award - September 2013In September, we honored Travis Baugh with our monthly You-Make-the-Difference Award.
 
Travis has had a love for computers since he was a little kid. But he's not exactly in love with that little computer in your pocket and says he prefers a "not-so-smart phone" so he isn't quite so connected ALL the time.
  
A local Columbian at heart, Travis attended Rock Bridge High School and is currently working on a business degree at Columbia College. He joined the Socket team in 2011 and is responsible for ensuring that service is delivered properly to residential and business customers. He works with Socket's sales team on any issues that come up with orders and also assists with other special projects.
 
We all know Travis is pretty cool, but most of us only see the tip of his iceberg of awesomeness on a daily basis.
 
"You'd never know just how careful, kind and efficient he is," said a fellow Socketeer who nominated him for the award. "Travis is a person who carries a lot of know-how in an invisible satchel of inspiration. He makes it look way too easy."
 
Another explained, "Socket runs smoothly because Travis is one of the balanced, performance-trained bearings at the center. We are lucky to have him as someone who makes a difference."
 
In his spare time, Travis likes to work on computers. In fact, he even traded some computer fix-it work for a special Evil Computer tattoo (he showed it to us but wouldn't let us take a picture).
 
Thanks for making Socket a better place, Travis!
  

Mobile Payments: What Your Business Should Know


If you haven’t yet paid for a transaction using some sort of mobile payment option, you likely will soon.
 
Americans will spend a projected $37 billion in mobile payment transactions in 2013, according to research firm Gartner, Inc. As smartphones and tablets become increasingly common, more mobile services are emerging to help businesses meet customer demand for flexible payment options.
 
Many businesses already accept credit card payments, but new technology is making it even easier. Card readers that connect to a smartphone or tablet allow businesses to make sales nearly anywhere, from the business location to an outdoor event or even the customer’s doorstep.
 
Mobile payment services typically operate in the same manner as traditional credit card processing systems. The business pays a percentage of each transaction to the payment service, which then deposits the funds in the business’s account.
 
Mobile payment services can be every bit as secure as a traditional credit card processing system, provided that the data is encrypted and transmitted securely. In fact, some experts believe mobile payments can be even more secure, offering password protection and other security features. After all, your wallet doesn’t come with password protection.  
 
Some cutting-edge businesses are even accepting payments via digital applications such as Google Wallet. These applications allow a customer to simply hold his or her mobile phone in front of a sensor that will then transfer funds from a specified bank account to the business. 
 
Businesses that are considering offering mobile payments should:

  • Consider what its customers want. Mobile payments aren’t for every customer or every business. Talk to company representatives who interact directly with customers and find out what options are being requested.  
  • Stick with a reputable company. Square and Intuit GoPayment are two of the most popular providers, and many financial institutions offer a similar service.
  • Understand the terms of the service. Find out if the provider charges a percentage of each transaction or a flat fee, as well as what other restrictions or charges apply.
  • Verify encryption and other security features. Ensure customers’ financial information will be handled with the utmost care.

 
Many businesses find that adopting flexible payment options helps them attract more customers and increase revenue. It will certainly be interesting to see how mobile payments evolve in the coming years, and how businesses adapt as a result. 

Socket to Sponsor Mid-Missouri Race for the Cure


Socket is once again proud to sponsor the Susan G. Komen Mid-Missouri Race for the Cure!
 
The race takes place this Saturday, October 12th, at 8:00 AM in downtown Columbia.
 
The route begins near the corner of 6th and Locust, and will loop around the University of Missouri campus. Even if you don't plan on racing, come out to cheer on those who do!
 
And if you do want to race, it's still not too late to sign up! Registrations will be accepted up to the time of the race. Registration is $30, and proceeds will support breast cancer awareness, screenings and research.
 

For more information, visit www.komenmidmissouri.org.
 
 
 
 

NEW TECH: A Phone That's Truly Yours, and Grows With You


In keeping with our theme of keeping you up-to-date on the newest, coolest gadgets and technologies, we'd like to show you, PhoneBloks:

 

 

PhoneBloks is not a company. It is not a product (yet). It's an idea.

 

Almost every electronic device we can buy nowadays has some sort of customization options. Whether it's size of the memory card, speed of the processor, or screen quality options such as a Retina screen, there is a general range of selections available. But for most users, once they decide that they would like to upgrade their current device, this tends to also mean discarding the old device and purchasing a new one.

 

This seems wasteful, doesn’t it? And it creates multiple problems. Despite the relatively small part that is "outdated," an entire phone is tossed. A phone that still might have a great camera and GPS, despite a cracked screen, for instance.

 

Simply put, if you could build a phone out of Legos, PhoneBloks would be your building pieces. The idea is that every component could essentially ship individually, and you assemble and configure your phone how you prefer. In the video, a prototype, which could be assumed as the generic model, would be the base from which people could customize by trading off features for upgraded hardware and other non-standard features, like an improved camera.

 

Not only does this allow for a phone that truly fits what you as the customer wants, it also make upgrading a matter of going to an app store of sorts, and selecting a new screen or board or camera. No more $200+ upgrades to get the newest, fastest, best specs. Just buy the specs you want.

 

What do you think of this idea?

Got Fiber?


We're excited to announce that we're now accepting orders in our entire fiber project area! This includes areas in the city of Fulton and east of Fulton
 
Check out our updated project map to view our coverage area, then enter your address on our website to see if you qualify. If you do, you can also place an order on our website.
 
Since we initially received the grant for our Rural Fiber Project in 2010 and began construction in 2011, we've seen an amazing increase in community support and interconnectedness in Callaway County, and we're excited to expand that to even more area residents and businesses.
    

Give us a call today at 1-800-762-5383 to get signed up, or to ask any burning questions you might be wondering about. You can also sign up online at www.socket.net/fiber
 
Even if you're not in our coverage area, enter your address on our website or give us a call at 1-800-762-5383 to tell us you want fiber in your area. This will help us determine where we should expand in the future.
  

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Who is Socket

Founded in 1994, Socket is a Missouri-based telephone and Internet service provider with the largest service area in the state.

Socket is a privately held company that provides families and businesses a choice for local and long-distance phone and Internet service. We combine the highest quality customer service with in-depth technical knowledge.

Our network serves more than 20,000 residents and businesses in more than 400 Missouri cities, and our customers enjoy simple billing and quick, friendly service.
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