Special Focus

Call Cabinet's Atmos Delivers an Extremely Cost Effective Solution for Call Recording

By Rich Tehrani, Group Editor-in-Chief, TMC  |  March 04, 2015

As the need for call recording grows as a result of compliance and improved customer service and training, smaller companies have found it challenging to pony up the large expense associated with an on-premises box with tons of storage that acts as a call recording solution.  Cloud computing has changed the economic model of many markets including call recording. As a result, smaller businesses can enjoy a greater array of solutions priced with their budgets in mind.

With this in mind, many organizations are happy to know Call Cabinet Corp. has entered this space with a new product called Atmos.

The company set out to create the offering after realizing that the cost of its Enterprise premises-based enterprise call recording and workforce optimization hardware solution was greater than the budgets of some of its smaller customers. The new solution integrates nicely with cloud providers, meaning these companies are able to more effectively bid on unified communication/hosted PBX contracts where compliance/recording is needed.

Installation

Client installation is straightforward as it is an HTML5 platform, meaning it works across browsers and platforms. You basically navigate to a URL, enter your login credentials, and are in the system. We tried this on an iPhone 6 Plus and a PC with an Intel (News - Alert) Core I7 running Firefox and were surprised the experience was nearly identical. We say nearly because on the iPhone, the volume slider was missing – no doubt because on such a device, it isn’t needed as the physical volume slider is nearby.

We didn’t integrate Atmos with our switch but instead relied on the integration the company provided with its service. In our view this in no way affects the completeness of the review, as Atmos has a free option allowing you to test the system with your particular platform before purchase.

The company currently supports Asterisk (News - Alert) systems in both SMB and carrier configurations as well as a soon to be released Windows module. In addition, the Call Cabinet Enterprise recorder can push calls to Atmos and currently supports Cisco (News - Alert), Microsoft Lync, Mitel, Avaya, Samsung, Siemens, Panasonic and pretty much all TDM environments. In addition, I was happy to see support for COMDIAL on the list as the company was a major player in the integration of computer and telephone systems – something we all benefit greatly from today.

Documentation/Training

Documentation is straightforward and lives on a webpage. Using it, we were able to add a new user and edit the account details. Generally, however, customers need not consult the user manual because the system is so intuitive. 

Having said that, the manual comes in handy when explaining why a feature may be of use. For example, in section 9.6 there is an explanation of why you want to assign a user name to an extension – so the user’s name shows up on the All Listing page. Accessing the help was easy as well since all the pages have a question mark in the top right hand corner, allowing a user to immediately access the manual.

Features

At the moment, Call Cabinet Atmos is a very economical solution and as a result it is not as full-featured as the company’s Enterprise solution, which also integrates with the company’s other solutions such as enhanced analytics, workforce optimization, reporting, and alerts. Having said that, we can expect the company to roll out more features at different price points over time.

The Enterprise solution is marketed as having 12 features while cloud-based Atmos has exactly half as many. The areas of overlap include the ability to record TDM, VoIP, compliance, 256-bit encryption, web portal, and cloud integration.

Atmos features cloud storage while the Enterprise version lists this as an optional feature. Since the company relies on the fairly reliable Microsoft (News - Alert) Azure cloud, you might even say there is a benefit of going with a direct cloud vs. premises solution.

Build/Design

It’s never easy to assess the build quality of a cloud-based solution, as testing potential is limited. We were tempted to hack into Microsoft’s Azure cloud and temporarily pull the plug to see what happened to our recordings, but we weren’t sure our jobs would still be here when we got out of prison. Suffice it to say, like other cloud solutions, with this one you have to rely on the provider, which in this case assures us the data can optionally be replicated in geographically disparate data centers.

Design is much easier to analyze – we liked what we saw. Nothing too fancy, just a basic console with quick access to the important features with icons that are generally easy to understand. Where we couldn’t understand them, the bubble help was more than sufficient.

Performance

Does the system record calls? Yes. We tested three different phone numbers with numerous phone calls and then listened to the audio recordings. They sounded great.

We also refreshed the page repeatedly at the completion of phone calls to see the lag between recordings finishing and becoming available to the web interface. A few seconds is all it took in the few cases we tried.

Quality

Audio quality was great. We had no issues.

The quality of the interface was very good as well. We encountered no bugs, and the settings all worked the way we expected.

Differentiation

The primary competitor to this product is custom hardware/software you install in your office. The reason you would choose Atmos over such solutions has to do more with economics and flexibility, as the cloud allows you to pay as you grow and also save as you shrink.

In other words, if you purchase a $10,000 call recorder, you may only be using a few percentage points of its capacity if your company is small. The Atmos solution, on the other hand, allows you to try it for free and grow your capabilities and payments as your workers grow in size.

In addition, the system integrates with Google (News - Alert) Apps, appealing to customers considering or using this service.

Ease of Use

It is difficult to explain how easy this solution is to use.

After logging in, you are presented with a dashboard (pictured) that consists of the total calls, the calls made today, this week, etc. The information is further reinforced with a bar graph. When you look at call details, you can see the time zone, call start time, end time, duration, extension, agent, and more.

Value

Call Cabinet recently changed its pricing model, which is now completely based on number of storage hours. The company says this structure allows for far greater flexibility and means that even larger companies can start out with a $49 per month plan.

Here is the breakdown of hosted choices:

Pricing Plans

Free

Express

Professional

Enterprise

Monthly Cost

$0

$49

$89

$129

Max Storage Hours

5

1,000

4,000

10,000

Support

The company was readying its U.S. product launch as we were writing this review. This means the company will now start to support the product during U.S. business hours with a 20-minute response time.

We did get an immediate auto response, by the way, at about 1 p.m. EST when I sent an email to the support department. Moreover, I got my support directly from the CEO of the company. I am not sure everyone will get this treatment, of course. But it was exceptional as you might expect.

Recent Enhancements & Room for Improvement

The call detail page was recently expanded to allow a maximum of 500 items per page. That’s a nice new feature. In fact, I noted in my original draft of this article that it would be a good idea for the company to up the 100 items per page to 500 given that numerous companies make many hundreds of calls an hour. So now we can check the box as needed. That said, Call Cabinet customers now have the option of 15, 30, 50, 100, 250, 500, 1,000, or 5,000 items per page.

Another feature I mentioned in my original draft, and that Call Cabinet has since implemented, is the option to export call detail rows to a spreadsheet.

Of course we’d also love to see more integrations, but we also understand that at this price point, the system offers a solid value. As mentioned earlier, we can expect more integrations/features at different price points in the future.

Bottom Line

Call Cabinet Atmos is extremely cost effective and should be a strong consideration as you look to the market for call recording solutions.

RATINGS

Ease of Install 5

Ease Of use 5

Interface 5

Functionality 5

Overall rating 5





Edited by Maurice Nagle
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