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Magazine's 1998 Products Of The Year

This past year, we've witnessed an unprecedented proliferation of CTI products. Indeed, these new products evidence so much variety, and confront us in such quantity, that they can sometimes seem, well, overwhelming.

While we may feel overwhelmed, we shouldn't be surprised. Consider this quick, back-of-the-envelope calculation: The August Buyer's Guide issue of CTI magazine reveals over 1,000 vendors of products listed in over 150 different categories. Even if each of these vendors released only a single new product or significant product upgrade per year, that would mean over 1,000 new releases in 1998. Add to this the fact that many vendors release multiple products - some perhaps a dozen or more - over the course of a year, and it isn't difficult to estimate that there would be at least 5,000 new products or product upgrades in the CTI market in any given year.

This wealth of new products led to the tidal wave of applications and supporting materials that we received for CTI's Product of the Year award, and it placed quite a burden on the editors of CTI and TMC Labs. Various editors and supporting personnel worked for days on end to differentiate between the applicants and their products and come up with suitable categories that represented the breadth and variety of the CTI world without overlooking the potential of specific solutions.

The process of selection for Product of the Year was somewhat like the Grammy awards or similar "Best of 1998" awards you might see in a magazine like Publisher's Weekly - categories were defined and refined to be sure that nothing of significance was left out, as well as to provide additional value for our readers. It's often not enough to have "Best Actor." Instead, there must be numerous categories: Best Actor, Male; Best Actor, Female; Best Supporting Actor….

Without exception, the editorial review board tasked with choosing the Product of the Year winners found the biggest challenge to be determining the exact market for the submitted product and how to compare similar products to one another. Press releases and data sheets often use similar language, lauding their products with catch-phrases; frequently such releases never get around to telling what it is that the product is. More than once, editors were left scratching their heads after reading an application or release that seemed to go out of its way to avoid specificity.

While it is understandable that many vendors wish to reach the largest possible market for their products, there is also a beauty in being able to say exactly what a given product does, and who it does it for. Often it is not so much the quantity of language that impresses a reader, but rather a certain well-thought-out scarcity that allows for precision as well as praise.

With that in mind, we have done our best to select the top five percent or so in a field that is thick with products and potential. A field that continues to grow beyond most people's expectations. Singling out these products and categorizing them as we award them "Product of the Year" is a process that we hope helps readers better understand the best representatives of categories that are of interest to them.

Needless to say, the categories are not perfect. A walk through a record store can quickly demonstrate how difficult it is to categorize anything (do Nine Inch Nails, Madonna, and Elvis Presley really all belong together in the Rock/Pop category?). And yet, without these categories, consumers would find it impossible to locate their favorite albums. Equally so with the world of CTI and the Product of the Year. We hope that this table helps.

Company Name Product Name Category
Envox (US) Ltd. CT Studio 2.1 Application generator, GUI type
MasterMind Technologies, Inc. MasterVox Application generator, GUI type
Parity Software Development Corporation Graphical VOS Application generator, GUI type
Pronexus VBVoice Application generator, GUI type
RING! Telecom, Inc. RING! iMPACT v 2.5 Application generator, GUI type
Artisoft, Inc. Visual Voice 4.1 Application generator, script/wizard type
EASE CT Solutions EASE For Windows NT Application generator, script/wizard type
MediaSoft Telecom IVS Studio Application generator, script/wizard type
Sphere Communications, Inc. Sphericall ATM-PBX, LAN-based telephone system
Heritage Communications Corporation World Talknet Billing/enhanced services
Mind CTI iPhoneX Billing/enhanced services
Telephony Experts Talking NT Enterprise SQ1 Billing/enhanced services
Natural MicroSystems NaturalFax Board
Analogic Corporation TAP-810 Board, CompactPCI
Dialogic Corporation QuadSpan Board, CompactPCI
BICOM, Inc. GEMINI Series Board, high density
PIKA Technologies PrimeNet Board, high density
AudioCodes, Ltd. TrunkPack-VoIP/200 Board, Internet telephony
DSP Research, Inc. Viper-12 Board, Internet telephony
e-Net, Inc. NetConnect Board, Internet telephony
Brooktrout Technology, Inc. TR114 PCI Series Board, multifunction
Commetrex Corporation MSP/CX Board, multifunction
Lucent Technologies Computer Telephony Products Vantage PCI Series Board, multifunction
Music Telecom MT-Passport Series Board, multifunction
Amtelco XDS XDS H.100 PCI MC3 Board, PC switching
Aculab USA, Inc. Prosody Board, speech processing and speech recognition
West Bau Technologies, Inc. Call Link For Norstar Call center
BCS Technologies, Inc. PC Phone Control With AgentVoice Call center, ACD add-on
EIS International, Inc. Centenium XL Call center, blended
InterVoice, Inc. AgentConnect Call center, blended
Mosaix, Inc. Call Management System 9.1 Call center, blended
Syntellect Vista Call center, blended
smallwonder softworks, Inc. Xchange 3.0 Call center, call center management
ATIO Corporation CyberCall 3.0 Call center, contact center
Apropos Technology Apropos Version 4 Call center, customer interaction management
Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories, Inc. Genesys Suite 5.1 Call center, customer interaction management
Hewlett-Packard Company Customer Contact Manager 5.0 Call center, customer interaction management
Melita International Enterprise Explorer Call center, customer interaction management
Mitel Corporation Call Center Commander Call center, customer interaction management
Mosaix, Inc. ViewStar 5.0 Call center, customer service
Quintus Corporation CallCenterQ Call center, customer service
CenterForce Technologies Optimizer 5.0 Call center, dialing platform
EIS International, Inc. Gateway 3.0 Call center, dialing platform
Stonehouse Communications ISDN Adaptive Dialer Call center, dialing platform
Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories, Inc. Genesys E-Mail Call center, e-mail management
GWI Software WebHelp! Call center, e-mail management
Mustang Software, Inc. Internet Message Center 2.3 Call center, e-mail management
Intecom E Millenium Server Call center, high volume operations
Ericsson, Inc. Phone Doubler Quick Call Call center, Internet telephony
IDT Corporation Net2Phone Call center, Internet telephony
Lucent Technologies CenterVu Computer Telephony Call center, middleware
CellIT, Inc. CCPRO Call center, multimedia solution
Interactive Intelligence, Inc. Enterprise Interaction Center Call center, PC-based PBX/ACD
Rockwell Electronic Commerce Transcend Call center, PC-based PBX/ACD
Telox Universal Telephony Server Call center, PC-based PBX/ACD
Buffalo International, Inc. Object Telephony Server Call center, PC-based telephony server
Eyretel, Inc. Quality Call Call center, recording and monitoring
NICE Systems NiceUniverse Call center, recording and monitoring
Noble Systems ATOMS Digital Recording System Call center, recording and monitoring
WhiteCap Development Corporation WhiteCap 2.0 Call center, recording and monitoring
Williams Communications Solutions Dialect Suite Call center, recording and monitoring
Witness Systems, Inc. Witness Call center, recording and monitoring
Lucent Technologies CentreVu Advocate Call center, rules-based routing/skills-based routing
Xantel Corporation Connex 2.4 Call center, rules-based routing/skills-based routing
Mosaix, Inc. Guide 2.0 Call center, scripting
Nortel Networks Symposium Agent Call center, scripting
Davox Corporation LYRICall 1.1 Call center, scripting software
Cintech Cinphony 3.0 Call center, small call center
SalesLan SalesLan Call center, small call center
GeoTel Communications Corporation Site ICR Call center, virtual call center
IEX Corporation TotalNet Call Routing Call center, virtual call center
Pegasystems eSolutions Call center, Web call center, self-service application
Microlog Corporation uniQue Agent Call center, Web contact center
SiteBridge Corporation CustomerNow Call center, Web contact center
TelAthena Systems LLC TelAthena Call center, Web contact center
Fujitsu Business Communication Systems, Inc. IntelliCommerce Call center, Web contact center, VoIP option
Interworks Systems, Inc. PipeLive Enterprise 3.0 Call center, Web contact center, VoIP option
Transaction Information Systems, Inc. HumanActive NetCollaboration Call center, Web contact center, VoIP option
WebLine Communications WebLine 2.0 Call center, Web contact center, VoIP option
Blue Pumpkin Software PrimeTime 1.3 Call center, workforce management
Executone Sentinel Call center, workforce management
Pipkins, Inc. SkillSense Call center, workforce management
TCS Management Group, Inc. TCS SeriesFive Call center, workforce management
Vantive Corporation Vantive Support Call center, workforce management
DoubleTalk Software Call Recorder Call recording
General DataComm, Inc. GDC APEX Voice Service Module Compression
Octave Communications OCI 1000 Conferencing, audio/tele
OutReach Technologies CONFERease 900 PC/Teleconferencing Server Conferencing, audio/tele
Real Time Systems Vendetta VND128/VND256 Conferencing, audio/tele
Intel Corporation TeamStation System Conferencing, multimedia
Nortel Networks Ide@Room Conferencing, multimedia
Polycom, Inc. ViewStation 128 Conferencing, multimedia
RADVision, Inc. MCU-323 Multipoint Control Unit Conferencing, multimedia
White Pine Software MeetingPoint 3.5 Conferencing, multimedia
GoldMine Software Corporation GoldMine 4.0 Contact manager
Symantec Corporation ACT! Contact manager
N-Soft Etrog Development platform, call center applications
Dialogic Corporation DM3 IPLink With T.8 Fax Capabilities Development platform, Internet telephony
Natural MicroSystems Fusion 2.0 Development platform, Internet telephony
DGM&S Telecom EDGE SignalWare Development platform, IP/PSTN interworking
Dialogic Corporation CT Media 1.1 Development platform, middleware
RADVision, Inc. H.323 Protocol Stack Development platform, software component
CCOM PhoneLine Operator Directory services
Priority Call Management ORYX Enhanced services platform
Redcom Laboratories, Inc. Toll*Gate With Debit Card Option Enhanced services platform
GFI Fax & Voice UK FAXmaker For Exchange 5.5 Fax gateway/connector
CompuFax Solutions Transaction Manager Fax, broadcast
PureData SatisFAXtion RAS4 pci Fax, card for remote access servers
Omtool, Ltd. Fax Sr. 3.0 Fax, enterprise solution
Open Port Technology, Inc. Harmony CPE Fax, enterprise solution
RightFAX, Inc. RightFax 6.0 Fax, enterprise solution
Internet Magic, Inc. Legacy 2000 Fax, external device/IP adapter
Concord Technologies Concord Internet Fax Fax, Internet fax service
Black Ice Software, Inc. ImpactFax On Demand Fax, on demand
Alcom Corporation LanFax NT 5.5 Fax, server
Copia International FaxFacts Fax, server
Interstar Technologies Lightning FAX 6.0 Fax, server
Optus Software, Inc. FACSys Fax Messaging Gateway 4.51 Fax, server
Symantec Corporation WinFax Pro 9.0 Fax, SOHO solution
Oki Network Technologies Internet Voice Gateway BS1200 Gateway, enterprise-oriented
Andrea Electronics Corporation PC Headset Telephone Interface Headsets and headset accessories
VXI Corporation Parrott Translator Headsets and headset accessories
RadiSys Corporation VGP-200 Industrial computer, CompactPCI, development platform
I-Bus I-Bus CompactPCI System Industrial computer/chassis, CompactPCI, 1-10 slots
Teknor Industrial Computers, Inc. TEK-CPCI-1003 Industrial computer/chassis, CompactPCI, 1-10 slots
Force Computers Centellis CO 16723 Industrial computer/chassis, CompactPCI, 11-20 slots
Motorola Computer Group CPX8000 Industrial computer/chassis, CompactPCI, 11-20 slots
Texas Micro, Inc. CP80-00 Industrial computer/chassis, CompactPCI, 11-20 slots
American Advantech Corporation IPC-6908 Industrial computer/chassis, ISA/PCI, 1-10 slots
Arise Computers slimPAK-2000 Industrial computer/chassis, ISA/PCI, 1-10 slots
Crystal Group, Inc. Crystal CS500 Industrial computer/chassis, ISA/PCI, 1-10 slots
Alliant CTS 5000 Industrial computer/chassis, ISA/PCI, 11-20 slots
Appro International, Inc. Communications Server Platform (5200 and 7000 Series) Industrial computer/chassis, ISA/PCI, 11-20 slots
Axiom Technology, Inc. AX6151 Industrial computer/chassis, ISA/PCI, 11-20 slots
Industrial Computer Source P2LX Series Industrial computer/chassis, ISA/PCI, 11-20 slots
MiTAC Industrial Corporation MCH-205R Industrial computer/chassis, ISA/PCI, 11-20 slots
SBS MicroAlliance Pro-Reliant Series Model FTU-2000 Industrial computer/chassis, ISA/PCI, 11-20 slots
Technoland, Inc. TL-cPCI 3550L Industrial computer/single board computer, CompactPCI
CSS Laboratories, Inc. SBP202 Industrial computer/single board computer, ISA/PCI
Diversified Technology LBC 8525 Industrial computer/single board computer, ISA/PCI
Trenton Technology, Inc. TR-P2BX Industrial computer/single board computer, ISA/PCI
PakNetX Corporation PNX ACD 2.0 Internet ACD
InnoMedia, Inc. InfoTalk Internet telephony appliance
Microsoft Corporation NetMeeting Internet telephony client
NetSpeak Corporation WebPhone 4.0 Internet telephony client
RADVision, Inc. OnLAN-323 GateKeeper Internet telephony gatekeeper
VocalTec Communications VocalTec Gatekeeper Internet telephony gatekeeper
Digi International Digi NetBlazer 8500 Internet telephony gateway, enterprise/provider
Nuera Communications, Inc. Access Plus F200ip Internet telephony gateway, enterprise/provider
Comdial Corporation ctvoice Internet telephony gateway, enterprise-oriented
Connected Systems SimpliCT VoIP Gateway Internet telephony gateway, enterprise-oriented
Hypercom Network Systems IP.tel 6000 Internet telephony gateway, provider-oriented
Intelliswitch, Inc. iSwitch Telephony Gateway Internet telephony gateway, provider-oriented
NeTrue Communications NeTruePhone Internet telephony gateway, provider-oriented
Cisco Systems Cisco 3600 platform Internet telephony, router platform
Brite Voice Systems BriteConnect IVR
Edify Corporation Electronic Workforce/LS IVR
Periphonics Corporation CallSPONSOR Computer Telephony Integration
Cortelco Systems, Inc. Illuminations IVR, Web-based
Vodavi Communications Systems, Inc. Hello! IVR IVR, Web-based
Vodavi Communications Systems, Inc. Infinite DVXPlus Key system
NBX Corporation NBX 100 Communications System LAN telephony system
Motorola Internet And Networking Group Vanguard 6400 Series (6430 and 6450) Multiservice networking
Vina Technologies Multiservice Xchange Multiservice networking
Fore Systems, Inc. ForeRunner LE25 Network equipment, ATM switch
3Com Corporation SuperStack II Dual Speed Hub 500 Network equipment, hub
VIPswitch VIPswitch 360 Network equipment, QoS solution
Ascend Communications Ascend Signaling Gateway (ASG) Network equipment, remote access device
Cabletron Systems SmartSwitch Router (2000, 8000, 8600) Network equipment, router
Microsoft Corporation Windows Embedded NT Operating system, embedded
APEX Voice Communications APEX Prepaid System Operations support, billing/administration
CERFNet CERFtone Operations support, billing/administration
Inter-Tel Axxess 5.0 PBX
NEC America, Inc. NEAX2000 Integrated Voice Server PBX
Nitsuko America 384i PBX
Tadiran Coral ISBX PBX
Telrad Digital 128 PBX
Brite Voice Systems Programmable Switching Module PBX adjunct
Compaq Computer Corporation Compaq Microcom 705 Corporate Communicator PBX adjunct
MediaCom Corporation MegaMiser PBX adjunct
Konexx Unlimited Systems Corporation, Inc. DWIatt2 PBX adjunct, digital/analog converter
AltiGen Communications AltiWare Open Edition PC-PBX, native boards
e-Voice Communications eVoice 3000 PC-PBX, native boards
Picazo Communications CT Pro PC-PBX, native boards
Artisoft, Inc. TeleVantage 2.0 PC-PBX, third-party boards
IBM IBM Computer Telephony Business Solution PC-PBX, third-party boards
NetPhone, Inc. Communications Server PBX-816 PC-PBX, third-party boards
Palm Computing, Inc. (3Com) Palm III PDA
American Power Conversion (APC) MasterSwitch Power control
Best Power FERRUPS Power control
Liebert Corporation UPStation GXT Multi Module Power control
Tripp Lite Smart 2200 Power control
Excel Switching Corporation ONE Architecture Switching Platform Programmable Switch
Dictaphone Corporation da Vinci QMS Recording and monitoring
Racal Recorders, Inc. Mirra 200 Recording and monitoring
3Com Corporation SuperStack II Remote Access System 1500 Remote access, data
Computone Corporation DCS-5000 Remote access, data
Data Race, Inc. Be There! NT Clients Remote access, voice (high capacity)
Siemens Information And Communication Networks Hicom 300E Remote access, voice (high capacity)
Teltone Corporation OfficeLink 2000 Remote access, voice (high capacity)
MCK Communications EXTender 3000 Remote access, voice (SOHO)
Acuity Corporation WebCenter Service and support
Advantagekbs, Inc. IQSupport Application Suite Service and support
Aptex Software, Inc. SelectResponse 3.0 Service and support
Arial Systems Corporation ArialView Awareness Service and support
Delta Three, Inc. Online Interactive Center Service and support
eGain Communications Email Management System Service and support
ServiceSoft Corporation Web Advisor/Knowledge Builder Service and support
MediaPhonics CyberDesk 1.5 SOHO
SoloPoint, Inc. M-200 SOHO
Symantec Corporation TalkWorks Pro 2.0 SOHO
Vienna Systems Vienna IP Shuttle SOHO
Casio Phonemate, Inc. IT-380 E-Mail Link SOHO, device
Cayman Systems 2E 500H SOHO, router
01 Communique Laboratories, Inc. Communicate! 8.0 SOHO, unified messaging
Vista Imaging, Inc. ViCAM Digital Video Camera SOHO, video camera
Xirlink, Inc. XVP 500 SOHO, video camera
Applied Language Technologies, Inc. (ALTech) SpeechWorks 4.0 Speech recognition, development platform
Nuance Communications V-Commerce Speech recognition, development platform
Parlance Corporation NameConnector Services Speech recognition, directory search
Phonetic Systems, Inc. PhoneticOperator Speech recognition, directory search
Registry Magic Virtual Operator Speech recognition, directory search
Ameritec Corporation ScriptMate Testing
Hammer Technologies Hammer IP VON/VoIP Test System Testing
Zarak Systems Corporation Abacus System Testing
Qronus Interactive LoadTester/CTI Testing, call center/CTI
Odin TeleSystems Inc. Thor-2-PCMIA Testing, emulator/simulation
Genoa Technology, Inc. FaxProbe 4.0 Kit Testing, fax
Telegra Corporation MaxTrace V.17 Testing, fax
Teltone Corporation Telephone Line Emulator Testing, line emulation
Amanda Company Amanda@LargeOffice Unified messaging
AVT CallXpress For Windows NT 5.10 Unified messaging
Callware Technologies Callegra For Windows NT Unified messaging
Nortel Networks CallPilot Unified messaging
Telekol Corporation IntegraX Business Communications Servers For Windows NT Unified messaging
General Magic Portico Virtual assistant
StarVox, Inc. StarGate Server Virtual PBX
Esna Technologies Telephony Office-Linx/Telephony LAN-Linx Voice mail, auto-attendant
Key Voice Technologies, Inc. Corporate Office NT/Small Office NT Voice mail, auto-attendant
Locus Dialogue Liaison Voice mail, auto-attendant
Vodavi Communications Systems, Inc. Hello! For Windows NT Voice mail, auto-attendant
Active Voice Corporation Lingo Voice Mail System Voice mail, auto-attendant, SOHO
Amanda Company Amanda@SOHO Voice mail, auto-attendant, SOHO
CTL, Inc. FLASH Voice mail, diskless
GMA Communications GMA DigiMail Voice mail, diskless
Praxon, Inc. Praxon PDX Voice/data switch
Selsius Systems IP PBX Voice/data switch
Shoreline Teleworks CrystaLAN System Voice/data switch
ADTRAN, Inc. ATLAS 800 Plus WAN access platform

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