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Unified Communications Magazine March 2008
Volume 1 / Number 5
Unified Communications Magazine
Zippy Grigonis

Google Apps Get Unified Communications

It was bound to happen. Google Apps have finally become connected to the world of unified communications.

By Rich Tehrani, Publisher's Outlook

Thanks to Voice Mobility (www.tmcnet.com/1671.1), a notable developer and provider of carrier and enterprise enhanced messaging solutions, you can now integrate Google Apps with your unified communications system in your campus or corporate environment. The Google Apps suite features web applications with functionality that’s similar to traditional office suites, and includes Gmail, Google Talk, Google Calendar, Google Docs, Contacts, Mobile apps and other collaboration tools all using the workplace or campus domain.

The company’s UCN Vmerge adds unified communications to complete messaging, collaboration, calendaring and presence functionality. To be specific, the UCN Vmerge platform even includes corporate instant messaging capabilities available via their LANtalk desktop and wireless application. When an important call arrives, the platform’s SMS (Short Messaging Service) support or other text-based notification options will immediately alert you. Also available are ASR (Automatic Speech Recognition) and TTS (Text-to-Speech) capabilities. The solution allows hosted or on-premise technology to handle the connectivity, which is great for people who prefer the flexibility of choosing how they install this solution.

According to UCN spokesman Mike Seeley, Voice Mobility’s VP of Global Sales, this total solution is like deploying Microsoft Exchange server, Active Directory and Office Communication Server, but at a fraction of the cost. In fact, Seeley compares this solution in the workplace and campus market to what Salesforce.com has done in the CRM space. I might add that this solution is to communications as Salesforce.com is to CRM.

UCN Vmerge enables users to access voice, fax and email messages directly from their Gmail account and synchronize all messages across all their devices — in essence, gluing the Google Apps to the enterprise telephony infrastructure. For example, if an email is heard via the user’s mobile device, it will be shown as read in their Gmail account. Other functionality enables users to do the following:

• Send faxes directly from their Gmail account;
• Receive voice and fax messages in their Gmail account;
• Record and deposit office conversations in their Gmail account;
• Manage live calls from their desktop;
• Click-to-dial internal and external numbers from any Google application;
• Synchronize call logs;
• Import Google Contacts into UCN Vmerge for remote access; and
• Utilize least cost routing available from the enterprise PBX.

You also get message waiting indication, message notifications, mobile workforce integration and offline access to the user’syour inbox. The company plans to release PBX presence integration with Google Talk soon.

UCN Vmerge is compatible with the majority of PBX and Centrex solutions on the market and the company can answer specific questions. For more information, I suggest you visit the Voice Mobility snapshot page (www.tmcnet.com/1671.1) or call John Gavin at 1-866-799-5577.

Rich Tehrani is President and Group Editor in Chief at TMC. In addition he is the Chairman of the world’s best-attended IP Communications event, Internet Telephony Conference & EXPO.

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