Encentuate Allows Easy, Secure Access from Anywhere at Anytime
Encentuate Inc. (news - alerts), a provider of enterprise access security solutions, announced the release of Encentuate Web Workplace, a solution that simplifies, strengthens, and tracks access to information systems via Web portals, extranets, and browsers. The solution also ensures that single sign-on, strong authentication, incremental security and compliance tracking are available consistently wherever a user gets on the network, providing secure and easy access anytime, anywhere to authorized users.
Encentuate Web Workplace expands Encentuates vision to provide identity management at the enterprise endpoints and complements the existing support for personal and shared workstations, Citrix, and Terminal Services. Web Workplace ensures that users need just one password and no installation of desktop software to access multiple information systems remotely from home offices and Web cafes or through browsers on handheld devices like PDAs and other mobile devices.
Web Workplace also allows IT administrators to leverage the Encentuate IMS Server to centrally manage identities and access policies. One of the key benefits of Web Workplace is the ability to track and centrally report all access events to the IMS Server. IT can then develop comprehensive user-centric reports to audit access to information systems across enterprise end-points.
VBrick Adds Presentation Materials to Streaming Video Capabilities
By Erik Linask
VBrick Systems (news - alerts) has added presentation capabilities to its Webcasting repertoire. VBCorpCast is the firms latest release and is designed to facilitate simple and even more effective streaming than ever before via the public Internet.
Key features of the two new releases include the incorporation of live, synchronized MicrosoftPowerPoint slides and guided Web browsing, as well as the addition of Windows Media Format to its streaming video format library. Both new kits, the VBCorpCast and VBEduCast targeting corporate users and educators respectively enable users to initiate all multimedia presentation capabilities using the products Microsoft PowerPoint interface, eliminating the need to learn new applications.
The VBrick Webcast kit is a complete, out-of-the-box presentation streaming solution that combines video with multimedia slides and Web content, as well as interactive audience polling and Q&A capabilities. The package comes complete with everything users will need to set up and complete live Web broadcasts the VBrick appliance, a camera microphone, wires to connect the appliance, and 50 GB reflecting service, in case you dont have enough bandwidth available for your presentation.
VBCorpCast also records the entire presentation, including slides, questions, and online polling, and automatically archives it in the Internet for later viewing. At the completion of the presentation, a simple click of the mouse button will begin the archiving process, which takes only as long as it takes to upload the file to the server.
Clear-Com Launches SoftVoICE 1.0 to Deliver Superior Intercom Quality
Clear-Com (news - alerts), an intercom solutions provider, announced SoftVoICE 1.0, intercom software for use on standard personal computers running Windows XP. SoftVoICE works in partnership with VoICE (Voice over Internet Communications Equipment), a 1-RU 4-way VoIP interface frame that connects remote users seamlessly and efficiently over low-cost house LANs, private WANs, and other communication links using Internet protocols. Each VoICE frame enables an Eclipse Matrix to convert four of its physical station ports into SoftVoICE connections.
Connecting remote personnel with fixed sites can challenge studios and switching centers because links are tricky and costly to coordinate while telecom solutions suffer quality and reliability issues. SoftVoICE, on the other hand, is as simple to use as an instant messaging client while delivering broadcast-quality audio from around town or around the globe.
SoftVoICE significantly reduces the cost and complexity of audio connections between studios and talent in remote locations or tight spaces. And with advances in image compression and video streaming, nothing prevents the talent from receiving moving or still pictures on a desktop or laptop to fully engage in the conversation. The same holds true for public safety employees, live event engineers, critical business conference attendees, or even military forces.
Citel Enables Gradual Enterprise VoIP Migration
By Johanne Torres
Citel (news - alerts) introduced the EXTender IP6000, a system that enables enterprises with multiple locations to gradually migrate their telecommunications to an IP telephony-based network.
With the EXTender products in place, businesses will be able to connect remote call centers, home workers, and branch offices to a central digital PBX over an IP network. The system offers reduced telecom operating costs, single voicemail and call center applications, central reception, and four-digit dialing throughout the enterprise.
As the business prepares to complete the migration to SIP, the EXTender IP6000 can be software-upgraded to accommodate the premises or service provider hosted IP PBX, integrating the existing handset and wiring infrastructure at each location. This process allows businesses to experience a smoother migration to SIP telephony in the future, without having to replace existing infrastructure.
iPass and Nokia Develop WiFi Connectivity Client for Nokia
iPass Inc. (news - alerts) and Nokia Enterprise Solutions (news - alerts) announced they are developing iPass wireless connectivity software for the Nokia 9500, the Nokia 9300i, and the Nokia Eseries devices. Based on the iPassConnect universal client, this software will extend availability of the iPass secure remote access service to users of Nokia Business devices.
In addition, Nokia began a user pilot of the iPass Corporate Access service, ahead of a planned company-wide roll-out around the world later this quarter. Through the iPass service, Nokia plans to provide its remote and mobile employees with secure and reliable connectivity to company resources via the Internet.
Users of the WiFi-enabled Nokia mobile business devices will be able to join the hundreds of thousands of active quarterly iPass users who can securely connect to the Internet and key corporate applications from approximately 50,000 WiFi venues worldwide.
iPass Corporate Access gives remote and mobile workers a safe and simple way to connect to the Internet from over 160 countries around the world with dial, ISDN, wired, and wireless broadband connectivity. It offers a full range of services, including centralized policy-based management and end-to-end security enforcement that allow IT managers to maintain control over how users connect to the Internet without jeopardizing key corporate assets.
Auto-LAN Configuration Device Simplifies Network Optimization
By Erik Linask
Global IP Telecommunications (news - alerts) has successfully completed the proof of concept version of its software that will automatically configure LAN devices. LANbot resolves frequent discrepancies and redundancies that inevitably are found in network installations with multiple devices sharing limited resources.
LANbot is a versatile LAN setup and installation utility designed to allow users of all levels to automatically configure their LAN devices for optimal performance. LANbot automatically resolves conflicts (e.g. port conflicts), configures both hardware and software, and provides a common user interface in at least three different languages. Global IP Telecom says LANbot will be the tool of choice for bringing new and existing customers online for ISPs.
The patent pending LANbot can automate the analysis and setup ofLANs. It can detect routers and all other network devices and, rather than require a separate user interface for each device, it provides a single uniform user interface capable of showing all devices and conflicts in the same window.
The goal is to have just one button to configurethe whole LAN automatically. When this button is pressed,the softwareanalyzes allnetwork and devices and automatically configures themwith the most optimal settings.
Sona Mobile Rolls Out BlackBerry Media Player Application
By Laura Stotler
Sona Mobile Holdings (news - alerts) is launching a BlackBerry Media Player software application, designed to offer multimedia applications on the latest generation of RIM devices. The new application will offer near TV quality layback of synchronized video and audio files.
Sona Mobile provides secure mobile solutions for access to financial and enterprise information as well as gaming and entertainment applications. The companys technology enables delivery of a rich client experience with top performance and security.
The Sona Wireless Development Platform architecture and 3D mobile methodology work across a wide range of mobile devices and operating systems. These include Research In Motions BlackBerry and MicrosoftCorps Windows Mobile lines.
For the very first time, BlackBerry users can receive either BerryCast (PodCasts wirelessly updated) or streaming video on their mobile devices, said John Bush, CEO and president of Sona Mobile. RIM customers take advantage of a download-and-play method of delivering multimedia files to BlackBerry devices. We believe that this application will be well-received in the marketplace.
Pandora and ESPRE Deliver Video Conferencing Solution
By Mae Kowalke
Media technology company ESPRE Solutions, Inc. (news - alerts) announced a licensing and integration agreement with IP communications service provider Pandora Networks for the delivery of a video conferencing solution.
The agreement integrates video products from both companies: ESPREs eViewChat and Pandoras Worksmart On-Demand IP Communications solution.
eViewChat is an 8-way video conferencing solution. Worksmart is a software suite that gives small and medium-sized businesses control over communications services including voice, video, messaging, and collaboration.
Integrating the two products means that Worksmart users will be able to take advantage of ESPREs proprietary video compression to deliver business-quality video communications at far less bandwidth than that of competing video solutions, the companies said.
The integration includes ESPREs virtual private network solution, eViewNet, allowing users to operate through corporate firewalls in order to make seamless video conferencing connections without the need to involve IT or other technical resources, the release stated.
SERVICE PROVIDER NEWS
XO Holdings Launches Nextlink
By Johanne Torres
XO Holdings (news - alerts) announced that it launched Nextlink, a new broadband wireless service provider that will offer services to mobile and wireline operators, businesses, and government agencies. Using licensed wireless spectrum covering 75 metropolitan markets across the United States, Nextlink (news - alerts) will offer customers broadband wireless services as an alternative to conventional broadband services delivered over copper.
Nextlinks services will first be available in Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, San Diego, Tampa, and Washington, DC, with additional market launches over the next two years. Nextlink is currently providing broadband wireless services to a national wireless company, delivering wireless backhaul and network redundancy and diversity services across markets in south Florida. In conjunction with the launch of its services, Nextlink also announced today the selection of Hughes Network Systems, LLC as its strategic wireless equipment supplier.
Nextlinks services are fixed wireless broadband offerings that rely on licensed local multipoint distribution system (LMDS) wireless spectrum in the 28GHz - 31GHz range. For locations up to seven miles and in line-of-sight of a Nextlink wireless hub, Nextlink provides wireless broadband services with speeds from 1.544 Mbps (T-1) up to 622 Mbps (OC-12). Nextlinks services include wireless T-1, wireless metro Ethernet, and wireless dedicated Internet access.
Seamless IP Networking Across the Great Lakes from Rogers, Sprint
By Erik Linask
Rogers (news - alerts), Canadas largest wireless voice and data communications services provider, has signed an agreement with Sprint allowing business customers with locations in both countries to operate on a seamless IP-based network through a new MPLS (multi-protocol label switching) network-to-network interface (NNI).
The newly founded relationship allows Rogers customers to seamlessly connect to the Sprint (news - alerts) network and enjoy a consistent communications experience north or south of Niagra Falls. Technology, SLAs, and support will all be seamlessly exchanged between the two providers.
Rogers North American MPLS delivers both the flexibility and reach of the Internet and the security and performance of a private network. Business customers have secure connections offices, customers, partners, and suppliers, but do not have to purchase, operate, and maintain additional hardware which makes for an efficient, cost-effective solution.
The advantage of MPLS solutions is that companies will be able to avoid many capital expenditures and additional hires to maintain networks on both sides of the border. Cross-border offices will be able to operate seamlessly on an IP-based network, experiencing seamless connectivity with security, redundancy, and quality of service.
Gizmo Project Now Includes VoIP Conferencing
By Erik Linask
Gizmo Project (news - alerts) uses your Internet connection to make calls to other computers. With the click of a mouse, youre connected to friends, family, and colleagues anywhere on earth. You talk clearly for as long as you want for free.
To address growing demands for conferencing capabilities, Gizmo Project has enhanced its VoIP services by tapping Vapps, a provider of VoIP conference calling solutions, for its conferencing platform in order to offer free worldwide conference calling services to Gizmo users.
Vapps provides a carrier-class system for service providers and large enterprises to deliver high-quality reservationless, attended and operator assisted conferencing solutions. The solution is based on the companys Conference Bridge 1000 (CB1000), a SIP-based conferencing platform that offers customized conferencing on a customer by customer basis both on legacy TDM and newer IP-based telecom systems.
With the Vapps VoIP conference calling solution, Gizmo subscribers can connect multiple users over the Internet for cost-effective and reliable conference calls. All the features of a traditional conference calling service are available through Gizmos Web site.
IPTV Goes Straight to the Screen
By Erik Linask
NeuLion (news - alerts) is expanding video possibilities with its IPTV, going beyond the desktop, straight from the Internet to the TV. The NeuLion iPTV platform is an end-to-end solution that uses the public Internet to stream multimedia content to any TV or PC from a common library. The result is DVD-quality streaming video in real-time to any device.
The NeuLion iPTV platform encodes, delivers, stores, and manages an unlimited range of multimedia content, and the Operational Support System (OSS) maintains all billing and customer support services. The service delivers high quality video to the home or business over an existing high speed Internet connection, allowing viewing of high quality content, just as if it were being delivered by a local cable provider.
But, without traditional geographical limitations, NeuLions platform can span the globe, connecting niche audiences and creating communities connected by common interests. Whats more NeuLions set-top box also supports interactive features, from VoIP connections to gaming and more.
The key is that the NeuLion platform is both platform- and vendor-neutral it can deliver video to any platform or any media device, using surprisingly low bandwidth rates.
NeuLions content partners supply media and identify the marketplace. The NeuLion iPTV Platform encodes, delivers, stores, and manages an unlimited amount of multimedia content, and the Operational Support System (OSS) maintains all billing and customer support services.
AT&T Delivers Content to Broadband Customers
By Johanne Torres
AT&T (news - alerts) and Starz Entertainment Group (news - alerts) have joined forces to offer SEGs Vongo Internet movie delivery service to AT&T High Speed Internet customers. The service delivers movies and other video content over the Internet for playback on Windows-based PCs, laptops and select portable media devices as well as on TVs.
The new agreement will feature a co-branded AT&T and Vongo Web site with a special 14-day free trial offer to AT&T High Speed Internet subscribers. The companies will also market the Vongo service on the AT&T Worldnet portal.
Vongos compelling content increases the value proposition for AT&T High Speed Internet customers, said Scott Helbing, chief marketing officer-AT&T Consumer in a statement. With Vongo, were positioned to deliver quality content, as we build a digital lifestyle platform for our customers.
CTI Selects Netrake To Launch Caribbean VoIP Services
Netrake (news - alerts) announced that VoIP carrier CTI (news - alerts) has selected Netrake to support its launch of VoIP services throughout the Caribbean region. Netrakes nCite session border controller provides CTI with secure traversal of firewall and network address translation (FW/NAT) systems, as well as denial of service (DOS) attack prevention through deep packet inspection at both the SIP signaling and VoIP media layers. Netrakes session controllers also provide end-to-end quality of service (QoS) assurance and SLA enforcement for each call across network borders.
CTI employs Netrakes nCite session border controllers to provide enterprise and wholesale VoIP services across the United States, the Caribbean and Latin America. Based in Miami, Fla., CTI is offering lower cost yet feature rich residential & enterprise VoIP services. Additionally, CTI will leverage its extensive IP network to offer termination services to local carriers around the region, thereby providing those carriers with competitive pricing. CTI will also be able to offer users their own Virtual Private Network (VPN) for delivering calls on and off of the public switched telephone network (PSTN), such as landing calls from one nations PSTN to another nations PSTN, as well as utilizing a unique four (4) digit dialing plan world wide.
American Cable and VoX Offer Triple-Play Bundle
By Johanne Torres
Wholesale VoIP service provider VoX Communications (news - alerts) announced that Florida cable operator American Cable Services will deploy VoX services as the broadband phone component of a new triple-play offer, which also includes cable TV and high speed Internet. The offering will first be available in Little Harbor, a coastal resort community of 2,300 residences in Ruskin, Florida.
Weve made a strategic decision to become the preferred broadband phone solution for cable operators nationwide. There are more than 1,100 independent cable operators like American Cable and many of them are weighing plans for phone services. This contract represents a large and meaningful market opportunity for VoX, said VoXs president and CIO Mark Richards.
American Cable is contracted for the next several years to provide the bundled services to approximately 150,000 multi-family residence units in the sunshine state, many of which will have a mandatory phone under their Home Owners Association covenants. The integrated offering becomes an amenity that is paid for as part of the residents monthly dues.
VoIP DEVELOPER NEWS
TANDBERG 3G Mobile Video Applications Drive Revenues
Assisting service providers in delivering video content and interactive videoconferencing to mobile consumers, TANDBERG (news - alerts) introduced 3G video capabilities that enable service providers, including mobile operators and content providers, to differentiate their offerings and maximize their revenues.
With the TANDBERG Video Portal, service providers manage and stream live or archived video content such as news reports, sports highlights, and movie previews to 3G mobile users. The intuitive drag-and-drop interface makes it easy for a service provider to build a customizable user experience that 3G mobile users navigate to quickly access content over their mobile phones. Service providers seamlessly manage content from multiple content providers with the Video Portal, and content usage statistics are easily downloadable for invoicing and statistic purposes. In addition, anyone can record content to the Video Portal for applications such as real estate services and video dating from any 3G mobile phone, or a SIP or H.323 device. Furthermore, 3G content can be live streamed to the internet or television studios.
Videoconferencing is another innovative mobile video application for 3G mobile users. Whether responding to emergency situations, remote troubleshooting or participating in multiple-site business meetings, 3G mobile users have the ability to interact face-to-face instantly from anywhere. With the TANDBERG 3G Gateway, service providers can offer mobile videoconferencing to their customers using a scalable and redundant solutions built to integrate with carrier infrastructures using E1/T1 or SS7. Diverse billing rates based on premium numbers or video short codes give service providers a flexible solution for maximizing call revenues.
Gig-E and PoE Stackables from Alcatel
By Erik Linask
Alcatel (news - alerts) has introduced its OmniSwitch 6850 family of 10 Gigabit-capable stackable 10/100/1000 and 10/100/1000PoE workgroup switches. The OmniSwitch 6850s are the first Alcatelswitches to provide Gigabit power over Ethernet (PoE) capabilities with extensive port diversity, full Alcatel Operating System (AOS) support, Gigabit to the desktop, 10 Gigabit uplinks, and enhanced performance for a flexible, intelligent, and highly available network.
The OmniSwitch 6850L models provide Fast Ethernet to the desktop and are software upgradeable to Gigabit. This latest release continues Alcatels strategy to provide enterprises a cost-effective means for migrating to Gigabit Ethernet desktop connections through a software key.
The OmniSwitch 6850s and 6850Ls protect enterprises investments by providing for future needs, such as advanced edge security, support for user mobility and dual IPv4/IPv6 capability. The switches versatility afford customers the flexibility to buy only what they need today without sacrificing performance they will require in the future. They also will benefit from the wire-rate layer 2 switching and layer 3 routing supporting optimal QoS for voice and video.
JDSU Tackles High Capacity Networks
By Cindy Waxer
JDSU (news - alerts) has announced that its IP network troubleshooting and data analysis platforms, DA-3400 and DA-3600A, can now perform VoIP call quality monitoring on high capacity networks. The DA-3400 is able to support 8,000 simultaneous calls and the DA-3600A can support 64,000 calls to provide accurate and high-quality measurements when network load or utilization is at its highest.
The enhanced DA platforms also generate important industry metrics used to help ensure VoIP voice quality, such as MOS and R Factor. These can be measured for all calls on a gigabit Ethernet circuit that is being utilized 100% by VoIP traffic. Other features include display filtering, display segmentation, and users configuration of the DA line for simple network management protocol or e-mail notification so they are alerted to any network quality issues quickly.
Part of JDSUs Service Assurance Solutions portfolio, the DA-3400/3600As new VoIP features also include the ability to show signaling details of VoIP calls using a graphic display that captures signal/packet set-up and tear-down during a VoIP call exchange. This feature also details the timing and response code, delivering prompts that warn the user the VoIP signal did not go through.
Acme Packet Intros SBC Features
By Johanne Torres
Session border control provider Acme Packet (news - alerts) introduced additional features and a partnership to offer a suite of session border controller capabilities to enable cable voice, video, and multimedia services.
The company now supports an ENUM server interface and has interoperability in field deployments with Nominums Navitas, an ENUM-based IP-application routing directory server. Acme Packet is also expanding its hosted NAT traversal mechanisms with support for the IETF standard STUN (Simple Traversal of UDP through NATs), STUN-Relay/TURN (Traversal Using Relay NAT) and ICE (Interactive Connectivity Establishment).
Acme Packet is currently in commercial production at 4 cable operators in the U.S. and at some cable companies in Europe. For these operators, Acme Packets Net-Net session border controllers provide access to the network edge and interconnect borders to protect and secure the MSO service infrastructure.
Acme Packets ENUM server interface for the Net-Net SBC platforms supports private and public ENUM directory services and enables MSOs to use IP transport end-to-end for VoIP calls between subscribers on different networks. This eliminates any PSTN transport.
Elma Announces New 1U EasyPlug Compact PCI Chassis
Elma Electronic Inc., (news - alerts) a global manufacturer of electronic packaging products, announced a new Type 39 1U EasyPlug CompactPCI enclosure. The Type 39c HA line features 9U cPCI backplanes from Elma Bustronic, which include pluggable 47-pin connectors for hot swapping power supplies. There are also pluggable fan tray headers and optional shelf management modules. Redundancy options can be built-in with all of these components. The backplanes are available in standard cPCI, H.110, or PICMG 2.16 options.
With a sheet metal design and full pluggability, the Type 39c HA family offers ease of manufacturing and saves costs. The chassis are available in 1U-4U heights in horizontal-mounting orientations. Compliant to the latest PICMG specifications and IEEE 1101.10/.11, the enclosures feature side-to-side 200CFM (300LFM) cooling, 300mm depths, and rear I/O options.
Trenton Introduces System Host Boards With Dual-Core Processors
Trenton Technology (news - alerts) has recently released several new PICMG 1.3 system host boards (SHBs) featuring dual-core processors from Intel.
Trentons SLT is a server-class SHB that has two, Dual-Core IntelXeon Processor LV 2.0GHzCPUs resulting four independent processing cores on a single system host board. The advanced power management capabilities of this new processor platform maximizes power efficiency, lowers system thermals andenables efficient high-density clustering of SHBs in a wide variety of telecom applications.
Trentons TML is a graphics-class SHB featuring a single, long-life Intel Core Duo Processor T2500. This dual-core SHB supports a x16 PCI Express electrical link to a PICMG 1.3 backplane that enables full link support for the latest x16 PCI Express graphics and video cards. Another key feature of the TML is the ability to support RAID0, 1, 5 or 10 implementations of the four, on-board SATA/300 interface ports.
Both class of system host boards support multiple PCI Express links from the SHB toa PICMG 1.3 backplane. These high speed, high bandwidth PCI Express links provide multiple communication pathways to and from the SHB that are capable of supporting a vide variety off the shelf PCI, PCI-X and PCI Express option cards.
Globecomm Unveils SkyBorne IPTV Regional Headend
By Patrick Barnard
Globecomm Systems (news - alerts) recently introduced its SkyBorne IPTVRegional Headend (RHE) for telephone companies and broadband carriers looking to add video services.
The latest in the companys line of pre-engineered systems, SkyBorne RHE provides content acquisition, content management, subscriber management, content packaging, and delivery to the carriers distribution network all in a single, cost-effective, customizable package. Optional revenue-generating features include systems for advertising insertion and video-on-demand.
According to Globecomm, SkyBorne RHE, which is based on field-proven modular building blocks, provides the performance, reliability and operational integrity of a custom broadcast system at a competitive price. It can adapt quickly and easily to changing customer needs. In addition to the Regional Headend, SkyBorne also includes lifecycle support services such as network monitoring, installation, field service and repair to preserve the value of the original investment and provide maximum uptime and throughput.
Minacom and Electroline offer VoIP, Video, & Internet Testing
Minacom (news - alerts), a VoIP test solution provider for Cable MSOs, announced that its DirectQuality R7 Service Level Test Automation platform now supports remote testing to Electroline cable transponders, providing advanced VoIP, IPTV, Internet, and Fax over IP service quality and reliability assurance throughout the hybrid fiber-coax (HFC) network. Electroline status-monitoring transponders support non-intrusive IP-loopback, in addition to packet, RF, and power supply performance and reliability monitoring.
With this announced interoperability, operators can now use Minacoms PowerProbe service level test probes running the RTP Streamer test agent to perform loopback tests to Electroline transponders supporting the SMRP protocol. Loopback testing provides a complete, concise service and network performance assessment by measuring bi-directional VoIP speech quality (MOS, R-factor), packet jitter, delay, loss, and other IP impairments, without interrupting transponder service transmission functions. Supporting Minacoms award-winning E-Model implementation, the RTP Streamer test agent allows operators to simulate triple-play traffic patterns with configurable codec, IP precedence, VLAN, jitter buffer and other key parameters to accurately replicate services and provide user-perceived quality of service (QoS) metrics.
IP CONTACT CENTER NEWS
Siemens HiPath ProCenter Helps Improve First Contact Resolution
Siemens Communications (news - alerts) announced HiPath ProCenter Enterprise Version 7.0, a new Internet protocol-ready contact center solution designed to help enterprises improve first contact resolution, drive up productivity and increase customer satisfaction. The solution includes pre-built integrations with front-office customer relationship management (CRM) applications from Microsoft Corp., SAP AG and Siebel Systems.
The Siemens HiPath ProCenter Enterprise solution helps enterprises improve the efficiencies of multiple customer interaction channels including voice, e-mail, and live Web interactions with Siemens award-winning presence and collaboration tools. With presence-driven applications, front-line agents can get real-time information about the availability of subject matter experts and connect to them across various media types throughout the enterprise.
Contact center industry research continues to demonstrate that first contact resolution is a key driver of customer loyalty, revenue growth and operating cost effectiveness, said Al Baker, vice president, Enterprise Division, Siemens Communications Inc. This presence-driven solution makes first-contact resolution possible even for highly complex or sensitive customer interactions.
The solutions presence and collaboration tools help drive first contact resolution via Team List and Team Bar features that enable agents to view real-time presence and availability states of peers, managers, and experts outside the contact center. Available users can be included in call transfers, conferences, or consultations with just a mouse click.
CRM Solution Helps Target Interact Increase Customer Satisfaction
By Erik Linask
Management consulting firm Target Interact (news - alerts) recently chose UCN Inc.s solution for enhancing the reliability and efficiency of its call center operations. UCN provides on-demand contact handling software and telecommunication services over its national VoIP network. InContact is a hosted solution set designed to significantly enhance caller satisfaction, boost agent productivity, and improve overall profitability. Features include interactive voice response (IVR), skills-based ACD routing, computer/telephony integration (CTI), inbound/ outbound call blending, remote agent or multi-site support, and much more.
InControl, part of the inContact suite, is an application development tool that simplifies customizing solutions to a drag and drop level. The ability to quickly create a call script allows contact management models to be tailored to each clients individual needs.
InContact identifies and routes a repeat customer to an appropriate agent using Caller ID, where caller information pop-up screens appear simultaneously with the call for the agent, whether they are working at home or in the office.
Salesnets On-Demand CRM Solution Takes Flight
By Erik Linask
During its six-year existence, JetBlue Airways (news - alerts) has endeavored to be more than the typical airline but for less.But as more and more airlines find it difficult to keep profits soaring, JetBlue also had to formulate a flight plan to keep its customers satisfied without cutting into margins or eliminating amenities.
It began by selecting Salesnets (news - alerts) patent pending on-demand CRM software to increase the effectiveness of its sales force. Salesnets is a cost-effective alternative to expensive, complex, packaged, or premise-based CRM software.
Salesnets Guided Performance Selling (GPS) strategy essentially turns software, configuration, integration, and administration into service offerings designed to drive increased ROI higher than purchased in-house solutions, anyway.
The solution increases performance by defining best practices, guiding salespeople to use those best practices, and tracking ongoing success using those best practices. It also assists in defining the path between business goals and realistic solutions. On demand software is nothing new, but the ease of administration, adaptability, and use and the single, low monthly subscription cost make Salesnets an intriguing proposition.
Ultimately, Salesnet was the most intuitive solution, including the sophisticated Salesnet Dashboard, which was able to display information significantly more clearly than other vendors solutions.
FrontRange Launches Service Management Software Upgrade
By Michelle Pasquerello
In an effort to support to its growing customer base, FrontRange Solutions (news - alerts) introduced the latest installment to its IT Service Management (ITSM), the IT Service Management 5.0.4 Service Pack 1.
The software is designed to assist IT service managers and support staff with new features, such as Inventory Management enhancements, including CI Comparison Utility, Inventory Identity, Discovery Enhancements and Scheduled Jobs. ITSM 5.0.4 Service Pack 1 can be installed on top of ITSM 5.0.4.
These innovations increase ITSMs enterprise class functionality, said Lori Samolyk, FrontRange Senior Product Marketing Manager in a statement. The FrontRange ITSM suite is helping small and large enterprises manage their IT systems and processes in accordance with ITIL. The ground-breaking ITSM suite is a mirror image of the ITIL best practices, which are quickly becoming accepted as the business model for IT.
FrontRanges products are designed specifically for small-to-medium-enterprise (SME) and distributed enterprise organizations.
Nices Contact Center Shopping Spree: Performix and IEX
By David Sims
Nice Systems (news - alerts) has announced two acquisitions. The company signed a definitive agreement to acquire IEX, a vendor of contact center workforce management products. The company also signed a second definitive agreement to acquire Performix, a vendor of contact center performance management.
IEX (news - alerts) sells workforce management, strategic planning and performance management products for the contact center market. IEXs flagship product TotalView is billed as providing a high-end centralized product that compiles data seamlessly across the enterprise, enabling more accurate and effective forecasting, planning and scheduling.
Perrformix sells contact center performance management, an emerging trend in the contact center market.
The combined product will, in the words of company officials, offer the first truly holistic view of contact center operation, addressing contact center and enterprise stakeholders at all levels agents, customers, supervisors, management, and decision makers in the enterprise.
It will also have contact center business performance and analytics products, including: interactions capture, quality monitoring, interaction analytics, coaching, forecasting, strategic planning and performance management.
Aspect Software Breaks Down Last Barrier
Aspect Software (news - alerts) announced it will provide and support the Digium open source IP PBX, the Asterisk Business Edition a professional-grade version of the industrys first open source IP PBX for customers of its Unified and Signature product lines.
The increased adoption of SIP and standards-based technology points to open source as an increasingly viable option. The early adopters of this technology have been drawn by the low cost, as well as the greater control and flexibility that open source telephony offers to companies.
The Asterisk Business Edition IP PBX provides tested reliability of critical functions and features and includes support and full documentation. Based on the Asterisk open source PBX, the product offers companies the same call handling capabilities expected of closed PBX systems, at a substantially reduced cost, including features such as switched or packet data and voice mail.
Industry experts have acknowledged that the biggest obstacle to widespread adoption of open source applications has been installation and ongoing support, said Gary Barnett, chief technology officer and executive vice president of technical services at Aspect Software.Now, there is nothing to stand in the way of companies being able to leverage the benefits that open source provides, including inexpensive voice transport.
Avtex Achieves Microsoft Gold Certified Partner Status
By Stefania Viscusi
Provider of contact center solutions, Avtex Inc., (news - alerts) which provides contact centers with applications and systems integration solutions for enhancing customer contact, recently announced its Microsoft Gold Certified Partner status. Goldstatus is the highest level of the Microsoft Partner Program and is only given to those companies that meet standards and requirements set specifically by Microsoft.
As a part of the partnership, Avtex will have exclusive access to resources, software training and support as well as Microsofts stamp of approval for its products and services.
Today, Microsoft recognizes Avtex, Inc. as a new Microsoft Gold Certified Partner for demonstrating its expertise in providing customer satisfaction with Microsoft products and technology. said Allison Watson, Vice President of the Worldwide Partner Sales and Marketing Group at Microsoft Corporation.
Jacada Leads the Way to Next-Gen Contact Center Productivity
By Erik Linask
Jacada Ltd., (news - alerts) which develops contact center productivity solutions, has released version 3.0 of its unified desktop solution, Jacada WorkSpace, in a model created to meet the demands of the growing number of contact centers seeking a modernized agent desktop, while optimizing processes and maximizing CSR productivity.
Jacada WorkSpace 3.0, which became popular under it former brand, Jacada Fusion Agent Portal, now represents the next generation of contact center desktops. It is a single agent console that unifies customer interaction tools with a single access point to all the mission-critical applications that enable the agent to effectively service customers.
This release is only the beginning of greater changes within the industry, according to the firm. Market experts and industry visionaries continue to place significant importance on the adoption of a unified CSR desktop, said Jacada CEO Gideon Hollander. But while desktop unification is a top priority in many contact centers, what this next generation desktop should actually be has, until now, remained undefined.
THE CHANNEL NEWS
VoX Communications Announces New VoIP Wholesale Customers
By Stefania Viscusi
VoX Communications Corp., (news - alerts) a wholly owned subsidiary of eLEC Communications Corp., and provider of retail and wholesale VoIP solutions, announced fouradditional wholesale agreements with service providers.
VoXs offerings will give the four providers: Dedicated Network Solutions LLC, AllegroTel, OIS Data, and UniversalCall a cost effective way to meet existing and new customer demands in the growing VoIP market.
VoXs solution offers advanced features and enhanced voice quality for its customers and will also provide private-label solutions for AllegroTel, Dedicated Network Solutions, and UniversalCall.
www.voxcorp.net (news - alerts)
Primus and TalkSwitch Establish Interoperability in the U.S.
By Johanne Torres
VoIP service provider Primus Telecommunications (news - alerts) and voice systems designer TalkSwitch joined forces to announce full interoperability between Primus calling services and TalkSwitchs 48-CVA PBX.
The ability to bundle Primus VoIP calling service and TalkSwitchs 48-CVA PBX will offer customers VoIP features, follow-me functionality, and conferencing, while maintaining a connection to the traditional telephone network.
Joint deployments of Primus and the TalkSwitch PBX will provide call processing at the customer premises, while the user is free to select from a set of voice, data, and access options provided by Primus. Each TalkSwitch telephone system comes loaded with a host of features, including multi-level auto attendants, call cascade options, voicemail and will feature Primus VoIP calling plans.
Nero Partners with Digital Rapids
Nero (news - alerts), a provider digital media technology, announced a partnership with Digital Rapids, a developer of professional hardware and software solutions for post production, broadcast, IPTV, Video on Demand (VOD) and other advanced media applications.
The first collaboration between the two companies is the integration of Neros AVC/H.264 and High Efficiency AAC, which are core components of Neros ISO-standard Nero Digital(TM) technologies. The Nero Digital technology family includes MPEG-4 and AAC, AVC/H.264, and High Efficiency AAC for the ultimate viewing experience from mobile phones to High Definition video screens.
Moving forward, Nero and Digital Rapids will continue working on a number of market-facing solutions, combining Neros technologies with Digital Rapids software and hardware solutions for professional video ingest, playout, encoding, transcoding, and delivery.
Earthlink, Linksys Team to Provide VoIP Solution
By Erik Linask
Internet service provider (ISP) EarthLink (news - alerts) and Linksys (news - alerts), a division of Cisco Systems (news - alerts), have announced a co-marketed Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) hardware and service solution that provides everything customers need to make phone calls over their Internet connection.
The new co-marketed VoIP solution features Earthlinks trueVoice telephony service along with the customers choice of a phone adapter (SPA2002-ER) or wireless-G router (WRTP54G-ER) from Linksys.
EarthLinks trueVoice is compatible with any high speed connection and is a plug and play solution that can be installed in minutes to work on any touchtone phone. With the service, customers can achieve the cost savings and feature benefits of calling via the Internet, without having to invest in expensive new handsets.
The Linksys phone adapter works with a standard wired or wireless router, while the wireless-G has a built-in phone adapter for home networking. Both products provide two phone ports for connection of two standard home phones or fax machines.
VoIP Logic to use Highdeals Transactive Pricing and Rating Solution
By Patrick Barnard
VoIP Logic (news - alerts) has selected Highdeals (news - alerts) Transactive pricing and rating solution to improve the delivery and management of its next generation IP services.
Highdeals Transactive modular software suite can price and rate thousands of transactions per second, giving carriers the functionality needed for fast and cost-effective delivery of todays emerging services.
By integrating Highdeals billing and rating engine into our on demand delivery platform, VoIP Logic enables service providers to deploy a carrier-grade billing solution quickly and with few in-house resources, said Kevin Burke, COO and CMO of VoIP Logic.
Highdeals pricing and rating solutions solve the billing challenges brought about by the emergence of next generation services. By delivering unconstrained pricing and packaging flexibility, Highdeal enables the rapid implementation of convergent services with diverse payments models and multiple partners.
Vodavi and Converged Access Ink VoIP Reseller Deal
By Johanne Torres
Vodavi (news - alerts) and Converged Access (news - alerts) announced that they partnered to provide traffic management and quality of service (QoS) systems for VoIP networks. The new partnership calls for Vodavi to resell Converged Access Converged Traffic Manager (CTM) and Converged Access Point (CAP) systems to Vodavis authorized dealers.
Enterprise customers deploying the Converged Access and Vodavis XTS-IP and TeleniumIP communications system bundle can now employ traffic management, and other WAN optimization and application control techniques. The Converged Access systems enable network managers to set priority levels for voice and data applications so that voice traffic is protected with Quality of Service (QoS) over the private network.
The Converged Traffic Manager enables toll-quality VoIP, jitter-free IP video, and business-IP response times. The product integrates traffic monitoring, traffic management, compression and caching with advanced application layer visibility and control to assure WAN efficiency and application performance for converging IP voice, data and video applications.
Interlink Global Taps XO to Deliver VoIP Offering
By Johanne Torres
Interlink Global (news - alerts) tapped XO Communications (news - alerts) to support the delivery of VoIP services to its US customer base.
The newly inked deal will enable Interlink Global to integrate the XO infrastructure and IP transport services to deliver VoIP services to business and residential customers in markets across the U.S., previously not served by InterLink Global. XOs wholesale services will also be used to support NetTalk, Interlink Globals recently launched point to point and multiparty video phone service for home and business customers.
With XO in our camp we can continue to deliver the highest QOS as our client rolls increase due to the diversity and fast rollout of new products, such as NetTalk and Streaming Video, said Anastasios Kyriakides, chairman and CEO of Interlink in a statement.
CompUSA Retails 8x8 Business VoIP Offering
By Johanne Torres
VoIP and video service provider 8x8 (news - alerts) announced that CompUSA will now sell Packet8 Virtual Office in each of its 226 retail outlets nationwide
Packet8 Virtual Office is a VoIP-hosted PBX phone service that allows small and medium sized businesses (SMBs) to implement a business-class phone system with unlimited local and long distance calling in the U.S. and Canada for a flat-rate of $39.99 a month, as well as lower-priced metered plans and international calling.
The new agreement calls for CompUSA to offer a Packet8 Virtual Office starter kit comprised of three business-class telephones and terminal adapters, priced at $239.97. A single unit offering for expansion beyond the three-phone minimum is also available for $79.99. Virtual Office includes auto attendants, conference bridges, extension-to-extension dialing, business class voicemail and ring groups.
Boise State Adds SIP Trunking to VoIP Network
By Erik Linask
Time Warner Telecom (news - alerts) has announced the successful installation of its SIP IP connections for VoIP services to Boise State University what TWT says is the largest VoIP deployment in an American educational environment.
The installation will entail running VoIP technology over Boise State Universitys existing campus-wide metro Ethernet service a Cisco Powered Network that encompasses more than 14,000 telephone numbers and 4,000 handsets.
Time Warner Telecoms 20 Mbps-capable SIP trunk service replaces the Universitys existing T1s to boost bandwidth by nearly 20%. The scalable SIP installation will allow IT managers to connect directly to a VoIP PBX, thereby allowing the school to reduce the number of gateways it needs by six all of which were required previously to convert digital voice signals into IP.
TWTs SIP trunking solution overlays the existing Ethernet LAN platform and is designed to seamlessly connect with existing Cisco VoIP applications. It is also highly scalable, which means that, as needs change, the school can expand the system again with relative ease and no disruption.
SIP trunking entails using Session Initiation Protocol(SIP) for call control and routing, which enables a single IP-only connection to the carrier. Voice simply becomes another application across the IP network. In theory, this results in a pure IP to IP call if both end users are using SIP trunking.
Verso Announces Availability of I-Master Application Server
Verso Technologies (news - alerts), a global provider of next generation network solutions, announced the introduction and general availability of the I-Master Application Server, an enhancement to the I-Master application.
The I-Master application adds value to both vertical and horizontal markets, offering a standards-based interface using SIP to third-party softswitches and RADIUS interface upstream for AAA (Authorization, Authentication and Administration) functions.
The offering is a real time call control and service logic solution with embedded IVR functionality supporting a wide array of call flows. A user-friendly Graphical User Interface (GUI) enables operators to easily create and manage customized call flows with multi-language support.
The combined deployment of Versos I-Master Revenue Assurance application and the application server enables real-time authentication, rating and call control for calling card, fixed line ADSL, dial-up, WiFi, and enhanced IVR services, resulting in increased customer loyalty and revenue generating ability for any next generation network (NGN) environment. Additionally, the I-Master Application server supports account balance preauthorization to enable simultaneous concurrent service usage on one account when deployed with the I-Master Revenue Assurance Platform.
Fusion Files Patent Application for its VoIP
Fusion Telecommunications (news - alerts) announced that it filed a patent application with the United States Patent Office for its Directed SIP Peer-to-Peer (DSP) technology, acquired by Fusion in February 2006. The patent application describes a system that Fusion plans to utilize to provide its free service between SIP devices.
Fusion is incorporating its DSP technology into the Companys international network for Internet voice calls between any combination of computers, Internet connected telephones, wireless devices, and other SIP-enabled hardware. Fusion believes its new efonica branded softphone and uniquely configured VoIP network will provide significant advantages over most VoIP peer-to-peer networks. Fusions technology eliminates the method of routing utilized by many VoIP peer-to-peer networks, in which many users Internet bandwidth and/or PCs are utilized as part of the carriers larger network to set up calls for thousands of other users.
Our DSP technology should be of particular interest to security conscious individuals and businesses, a fast-growing segment as SIP is quickly becoming the de facto VoIP standard for communicating between VoIP hardware devices. We believe our entire communications package should be particularly advantageous for Fusions primary target of the emerging markets of the Middle East, Asia, Latin America, Africa, and the Caribbean, and their related communities of interests, said Matthew Rosen, Fusions President and CEO.
InterTels New 7000 Communications System
By Laura Stotler
The new Inter-Tel (news - alerts) 7000 system can scale up to 2,500 users per site and is designed as a pure, standards-based communications platform. Using SIP technology at its core, the system is redundant and secure and offers an easy-to-use interface for remote management and configuration.
The new platform will also offer full PBX-style features as well as a number of enhanced features like embedded presence management and mobility. It is designed to support Inter-Tels advanced IP-powered applications like contact center and messaging solutions, collaboration and the companys existing lines of multi-protocol IP and SIP endpoints.
Inter-Tel has done a masterful job in developing a platform that is being designed to successfully leverage advanced IP technology to provide a rich, intuitive feature set that can be an asset to any business, said Mark Ricca, a partner with Intellicom Analytics.
Standards-based software solutions, with SIP at the core, will enable organizations to avoid obsolescence by leveraging the communication options that Internet standards make possible, noted Allan Sulkin, president of TEQConsult Group.
The fact that the Inter-Tel 7000 delivers presence capabilities as part of its core feature set differentiates it from other solutions in the market, said Rob Arnold, an industry analyst with Current Analysis. This is a real incentive for businesses looking to leverage these tools without having to add servers or additional software.
3 Rivers Chooses Pannaways Convergence Network Solution
By Patrick Barnard
Pannaway Technologies (news - alerts) has won a major deal with 3 Rivers Communications, which will be using Pannaways broadband access system for the delivery of new next-generation services including IPTV to its rural subscribers.
The cooperative will use Pannaways ADSL2+ and Active Ethernet FTTH solution to deliver a robust set of triple play features, along with the necessary bandwidth capacity to add future serives. Pannaways copper and fiber-based access solution will deliver SIP-enabled triple play, including Primary Line VoIP for guaranteed Lifeline calling and E 911.
Broadband Aggregation Routers (BARTM) will be deployed in the cooperatives central office (CO) for scaleable 1 to 10 Gigabit Ethernet transport, while Broadband Access Switches (BASTM) will reside in remote terminals (RT) for high-performance last mile voice, video and data delivery.
The ILEC will also use Pannaways Broadband Access Manager (BAM) to simplify the deployment and provisioning of its new copper and fiber-based network.
The use of IP-Ethernet and SIP allows Pannaway to deliver improved video quality with enhanced rate/reach benefits. Enhanced network performance coupled with 10Gbps transport scalability ensures that telcos networks are future-proofed, that they will have the performance and capacity to support emerging bandwidth-intensive services.