24 x 7 operations has been a trend since the boom of the call center industry. But in the food and beverage industry, Kowloon (siopao and siomai) has been one of the pioneers of operating round the clock. My friend Abet (and his wife Lei) acquired a franchise about 2 years ago. With the franchise business model and some operational tweaking, the couple was able to cope with the startup challenge.
The location of the store and it’s operation timeframe was one of their challenge, without either of their presence. Although the usual phone call normally solves any in-store issue, the couple is finding it hard to manage what they can’t see. Lei is a natural internet surfer, after a short discussion about using the available technologies — it’s quite obvious that the solution was installing an IP web camera.
After more than a month in replacing their PLDT account with Globe’s bundled voice and DSL service, I helped Abet configured their 24/7 view of their store. We used the service of www.dyndns.org that provided the url for the web cam service. Globe’s router (aztech) needs to be configured to forward the http request to the ip based camera, an encore product which can be bought off-the-shelf.
The router comes with a dyndns client that is supposed to register the ip address to dyndns.org whenever it changes. So far the setup is reliable it’s been working for a week now. PLDT has it’s own service that they offer to SME’s. But with a little tech review it is as simple as setting up a printer to your PC. The free dynamic DNS services offered by the likes of dyndns.org surely makes the internet a useful utility.
More information about the setup: www.blutopic.com