Monday, August 31, 2009

Altigen vs Avaya vs NEC .... Who Do You Choose?

Most businesses at one time or another find themselves in the process of evaluating new phone/voicemail systems. That can be a hair pulling event .... time consuming and frustrating at best.

Let's say you've narrowed your list down to these systems .....

Altigen Max2000
Avaya IP Office 500
NEC SV8100

Yeah, yeah ... no Cisco listed. That would be too easy.

Now .... which would you choose and why?

I would recommend them in the following order .....

1. NEC SV8100 - Simply because NEC have been around for a long time, and you know their products can be supported long after their life cycle has completed. NEC products are the most flexible, and cost effective business system on the market. Nothing more need be said.

2. Avaya - There are a ton of Avaya professionals out there so you will have a fair bit of resources to turn to, and the good thing to that is the prices fluctuate due to the competition in the market. However, they have failed in the past and just came out with a newly structured organization. Avaya has morphed from AT&T then Lucent, and now Avaya (every time they fail they just spin it off to a new name). It is up too you if you want to take that risk. There will still be plenty of professionals around to service them so I wouldn't say that would be a problem. Also just to clarify .... Avaya is financially pretty sound at this point as they have made an offer to buy Nortel.

Now with the IP Office 500 ..... this is a real winner, cost effective and easy to manage. Now that Release 5 is out Avaya has made this system even better. Also you may want to ask your vendor if Avaya is still offering the 20% off beat Nortel Promotion.

3. Altigen - maybe a bit "specialized" and lesser known than the other two. But they may be the right choice given a specific application, cost point, local service office (customer relationship). Altigen is one of several companies that have a decent product, but they only recently entered the voice field.

The other alternative is Hosted Solutions. Regardless, I never recommend this solution with a strong conviction. The reason being is that you have to have some fail-over and or redundancies in the event you lose contact to your Hosted service. Now if you were to do it properly you actually won't have any reasonable cost savings. If anything it could cost you more then a Localized product.

You really have to find the right solution for you business, the biggest mistake that many business make is being short sighted on what the phone system is meant to do. Never think about the immediate future. Where possible think about the distant future, where the phone system will come into play, and if it can grow with your business to that expected time frame.

Simply put, if the Phone system can not meet the demands of the business now, and also in the future (not too distant future) ..... then you really are not purchasing something that is right for you. You are only putting in a stop measure appliance, kind of like a band aid solution.

Take your time, think about every step. Good indicators are also looking at your past and how the current system performed with the growth of the business .... and what it cost you to keep it growing, then compare.

You CAN get some extra help with this decision ... from someone local ... using a free online search tool such as:

Telecommunication System Support & Services

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Friday, August 28, 2009

What Is The Future Of Cloud Computing Part III

Repeating the questions from Part I:

* With so many companies rushing to announce their development in cloud computing /SaaS/PaaS in 2009, is cloud computing really economically viable in the long-term?

* Will large enterprises and Small and medium businesses actually go in for cloud computing and virtualization?

* What will be the benefits and problems associated with the same?

* Which industries are more likely to be the front-runners in cloud implementation?

I believe as more companies continue to develop and push lots of $$$ into cloud computing technologies .... we will see both large and small businesses sign on. As the supply increases, smaller companies can take advantage as the costs will decrease. For larger companies, they will see other benefits of this such as disaster recovery, uptime requirements, and quicker delivery to worldwide customers.

When looking at the benefits and risks of this technology I think it largely depends on whether the cloud is public or private. Private clouds offer lower risk for companies but at higher cost due to the entity footing the entire bill for the technology, while public clouds such as Amazon offer lower costs but more risks due to private information being saved on public systems. The benefits of both are similar, if done right. Companies will be able to take advantage of better uptime, reduction of downtime due to failures, and improved availability to customers.

Any industry that pushes information to mass communities spread around the world will be the front-runners. These would mostly be media companies such as news outlets, with their main focus of getting information out to the customer the fastest. In an example of the news, the company who can spread a story the fastest will get more readers. So using this technology to get the story to the customers around the world the fastest will have more readers and benefit from cloud computing.

The advantages of this new model are clear and massive. The customer still has full control of their services via various web admin portals, but they now don't need to buy the hardware outright, house it in a rack, pay for the power, the air cooling, the upgrades, the maintenance, the expensive engineers to support them, the replacement of hardware, the list goes on.... They get to pay for what they want, when they need it. Just like water from a tap, or electricity from the socket.

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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

What Is The Future Of Cloud Computing Part II

Repeating the questions from Part I:

* With so many companies rushing to announce their development in cloud computing /SaaS/PaaS in 2009, is cloud computing really economically viable in the long-term?

* Will large enterprises and Small and medium businesses actually go in for cloud computing and virtualization?

* What will be the benefits and problems associated with the same?

* Which industries are more likely to be the front-runners in cloud implementation?

I have my issues with the cloud concept. For starters, there are huge security concerns that too many companies are trying to "market" away as if they can't happen. That's only the security aspect though. So let me give you a real world instance - not marketing - about something a colleague expereinced.

Currently my friend provides ITSP (VoIP) services to thousands of customers. They have redudant providers coming into a DS3 for SIP termination. On an average, they push out about 1.5million minutes in voice traffic per day. Last Friday, one of their carriers went down momentarily. No sweat, they had redundancy.

That was until their other carrier went down as well. There was nothing they could do as they cannot route telephone numbers inbound through another carrier .... it just doesn't work that way. Long story short, 10 hours later, they were back up and running. 10 HOURS later! Now imagine that if you will, you're running your business without any telephones for 10 hours and you're Disaster Recovery was a disaster in itself. Imagine this if you were a day trader or a telemarketing firm. Their clients had looked to them to save by ridding themselves of costly PBX's and circuits. While they personally try to make it known that the Internet is unstable and will be what it will be, most customers shake it off until something catastrophic occurs.

This happens to the best of them including Google who had six outages in eight months. But hey - "poop happens" - accidents will occur, you will lose money. At the end of the day make sure your risk metrics in your analysis show you how much money you can LOSE as well as SAVE using the clouds.

Is it worth saving a couple of dollars at the end of the day? Sure it is you'd say ... and this is because you're not likely to get the statistics from companies who've lost money by doing business in the clouds. I mean think about it, if it means kissing your data goodbye because a provider went under is it worth it to you?

"The Linkup's failure was the most serious of the three. Although its scale was probably the smallest—the company had about 20,000 paying customers—the impact was far and away the greatest; no temporary software glitch here, but a permanent loss of data"

There are plenty of horrible things with cloud computing that are common sense. Yet money will cloud the judgments of those in positions to make decisions. Personally, I would not trust anything to the cloud. It's Russian Roulette period.

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Monday, August 24, 2009

What Is The Future Of Cloud Computing Part I

With so many companies rushing to announce their development in cloud computing /SaaS/PaaS in 2009, is cloud computing really economically viable in the long-term?

Will large enterprises and Small and medium businesses actually go in for cloud computing and virtualization?

What will be the benefits and problems associated with the same?

Which industries are more likely to be the front-runners in cloud implementation?

Clearly, "cloud computing" has a future, however, the vaunted image of it providing a panacea for the problems of ICT deployment within business is misguided at best.

Certainly, as with existing "3rd party hosted services", the initial problems are in defining *scope*, not just in terms of the service provision but in the impact to internalized business processes. Unless there is a clear definition of scope and function, then there can be real problems in terms of integration with retained processes. At the extremes of implementation, such service offerings must be wholly definable and commoditized or provide a *framework* for business process integration - the same way that a SAP deployment effectively dictates the BP model rather than conforming to existing and disparate BP models.

When services are commoditized, can we really vaunt them as "cloud computing" - surely the phrase "hosted services" already suffice, whether in IaaS, PaaS or SaaS? Can we conclude that the "cloud" is presenting something more rather than just promoting a marketing niche.

We must also consider applicability and the scale of providers in meeting the demands of large corporations. Unless commoditization is high then providing services to large numbers of clients, especially in terms of IaaS and SaaS, can be unwieldy for providers and so inevitably some form of framework for a focussed solution has to be deployed.

On the one hand, we might consider a large corporation that essentially outsources "everything", (I)(P)(S)aaS - this is *unlikely* since meeting the needs of multiple large clients would require massive service providers and the use of subcontract services would become highly complex and inefficient. For SMEs, this "complete" outsourcing might be viable if a business process model was also applied, essentially running the same model for all small clients. I see effective models providing commoditized services to large corporations and BP frameworks to SMEs.

I am not convinced that the development of open standards is sufficient to support the interoperability required for large scale deployments, which in turn would create "hubs" rather than the true "open" service environment that we might perceive. EDI has not been able to develop *truly* open standards in the last 40 years and I do not see the drive being strong enough to develop them within the "cloud" paradigm.

The question of "which industries..." .... is probably prescient of the way that cloud computing will develop. I see the provision of services within very specific industries being the major beneficiaries due to their existing integration and business process infrastructure. As an example, manufacturing within the automotive industry or utilities industry. I believe that *industry* initiatives will provide the most fertile ground as opposed to pure "free market" delivery of services to disparate clients.

Ultimately, purely from a service provision business model, it can only achieve effectiveness if targeting a homogeneous group, therefore, any industry with an authoritative associative group attached to it could benefit from *efficient* "aaS" implementation.

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Friday, August 21, 2009

Tools To Test Your Broadband Network .... Speed, Line Quality, VoIP Bandwidth, Mobile Speed, & More

Here's a list of just a few tools you can use to test various performance aspects of your broadband network ......

* Speed Tests - Test your maximum upload speed and download speed from several geographically distributed locations. Java, Flash and iPhone speed test (100% browser) available.

* Tweak Test - Test if your computer is setup correctly for broadband TCP connectivity

* Line Quality Testing - Packet loss tests on your line, including identification of any problem routers en-route to you.

* VOIP Bandwidth Tester - Test the capacity of your business connection to determine how many simultaneous managed VOIP circuits it can carry. Test uses UDP and real VOIP packets.

* Smokeping - NEW: Intensively monitor an IP address for 24+ hours to detect packet loss and/or excessive latency variability -- from three different locations!

* 24x7 Line Monitoring - Does your ISP promise always-on? are you getting it? keep track of many aspects of your connectivity, and weekly reports as well

* MOBILE Speed Test - Simple MOBILE speed test page. Optimized for tiny browsers.

* Bandwidth Calculator - Confused about unit conversions? want to see how long it will take to transfer a file at a certain speed? or how much data can be transferred in a given time?

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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

What Is A Smart Phone .... And What Can It Do For You?

A smartphone is a mobile phone offering advanced capabilities, often with PC-like functionality (PC-mobile handset convergence). There is no industry standard definition of a smartphone. For some, a smartphone is a phone that runs complete operating system software providing a standardized interface and platform for application developers. For others, a smartphone is simply a phone with advanced features like e-mail, Internet and e-book reader capabilities, and/or a built-in full keyboard or external USB keyboard and VGA connector. In other words, it is a miniature computer that has phone capability.

In terms of features, most smartphones support full featured email capabilities with the functionality of a complete personal organizer. Other functionality might include an additional interface such as a miniature QWERTY keyboard, a touch screen or a D-pad, a built-in camera, contact management, an accelerometer, built-in navigation hardware and software, the ability to read business documents in a variety of formats such as PDF and Microsoft Office, media software for playing music, browsing photos and viewing video clips, internet browsers or even just secure access to company mail, such as is provided by a BlackBerry. One common feature to the majority of the smartphones is a contact list able to store as many contacts as the available memory permits, in contrast to regular phones that has a limit to the maximum number of contacts that can be stored.

Operating systems that can be found on smartphones include Symbian OS, iPhone OS, RIM's BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, Linux, Palm WebOS and Android.

For help finding the right Smart Phone for you .... including comparison of phones, providers, plans, and also tracking unadvertised special deals .... go to:

Find A Smart Phone


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Monday, August 17, 2009

What Is T1 Bandwidth .... And What Does It Give Your Business?

Digital signal 1 (DS1, also known as T1, sometimes "DS-1") is a T-carrier signaling scheme devised by Bell Labs.[1] DS1 is a widely used standard in telecommunications in North America and Japan to transmit voice and data between devices. E1 is used in place of T1 outside of North America, Japan, and South Korea. Technically, DS1 is the logical bit pattern used over a physical T1 line; however, the terms "DS1" and "T1" are often used interchangeably.

The name T1 came from the carrier letter assigned by AT&T to the technology. Essentially, the "T" is a part number that was assigned by AT&T. Just as there is the generally known L-carrier and N-carrier systems, T-carrier was the next letter available and T1 is the first level in the hierarchy. DS-1 meant "Digital Service - Level 1", and had to do with the service to be sent (originally 24 digitized voice channels over the T1). The terms T1 and DS1 have become synonymous and include a plethora of different services from voice to data to clear-channel pipes. The line speed is always consistent at 1.544 Mbit/s, but the payload can vary greatly.

A DS1 circuit is made up of twenty-four 8-bit channels (also known as timeslots or DS0s), each channel being a 64 kbit/s DS0 multiplexed carrier circuit[2]. A DS1 is also a full-duplex circuit, which means the circuit transmits and receives 1.544 Mbit/s concurrently. A total of 1.536 Mbit/s of [2] bandwidth is achieved by sampling each of the twenty-four 8-bit DS0s 8000 times per second. This sampling is referred to as 8-kHz sampling (See Pulse-code modulation). An additional 8 kbit/s of overhead is obtained from the placement of one framing bit, for a total of 1.544 Mbit/s.

Additionally, for voice T1s there are two main types: so-called "plain" or Inband T1s and PRI (Primary Rate Interface). While both carry voice telephone calls in similar fashion, PRIs are commonly used in call centers and provide not only the 23 actual usable telephone lines (Known as "B" channels) but also a 24th line (Known as the "D" channel for Delta[3]) that carries signaling information. This special "D" channel carries: Caller ID (CID) and Automatic Number Identification (ANI) data, required channel type (usually a B, or Bearer channel), call handle, DNIS info, requested channel number and a request for response[4].

Inband T1s are also capable of carrying CID and ANI information if they are configured by the carrier to do so but PRI's handle this more efficiently. While an Inband T1 seemingly has a slight advantage due to 24 lines being available to make calls (as opposed to a PRI that has 23), each channel in an Inband T1 must perform its own set up and tear-down of each call. A PRI uses the 24th channel as a data channel to perform all the overhead operations of the other 23 channels (including CID and ANI). Although an inband T1 has 24 channels, the 23 channel PRI can setup more calls faster due to the dedicated 24th signalling channel (D Channel).

Before the jump in Internet traffic in the mid 1990s, DS1s were found mostly in larger businesses and telephone company central offices as a means to transport voice traffic between locations. DS1s have been and still are the primary way cellular phone carriers connect their central office switches (MSCs) to the cell sites deployed throughout a city.

Today, many smaller companies often use an entire DS1 for Internet traffic, providing 1.544 Mbit/s of shareable synchronous connectivity (allowing for 1.536 Mbit/s of usable traffic, and 8 kbit/s of framing overhead). However, DS1 can be ordered as a channelized circuit, and any number of channels can be reserved for non-data (for example, voice) traffic.

Many radio stations also use this technology in their broadcasting. A T1 telephone line can be used as a link to convey the broadcast audio from the studio to the transmitter/tower site, a distance that can be quite a few miles in length. T1-based solutions, as opposed to IP-based, remain very attractive to broadcasters because the data is transported in effective real-time.

If you're in the market for a T1 circuit I strongly recommend that you take advantage of the free assistance provided here:

T1 Bandwidth

You'll receive instant rates quotes comparing multiple providers (over 30) available at the specific location you specificy (US only at the moment) ..... with follow-up support providing more detailed research including unadvertised special deals and network netowrk architecture insights to give you the most cost effective network solution options for your particluar application(s).

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Friday, August 14, 2009

Where To Find A Low Cost International Conference Calling Service

In today's world we live in a global community .... needing communication often on an international scale for both personal and/or business purposes.

How to accomplish that without spending too much is often the scary question many businesses and individuals ask themselves.

But ... it doesn't have to be scary. Plus it certainly doesn't have to cost too much either.

How would you like Global access from over 50 countries, a web based control panel, and more, PLUS a really low price?

You can have all that and more. With FlexTelOne you can communicate with the world on your terms ... and your price.

With their improvements in communication technology, it is possible to set up a conference call and talk quite clearly with people in several continents. Polycom Soundstation conference phones are the acme of quality, allowing fully duplex (that means two people can speak at once) conversation. This way you can have a few people around a conference phone in a meeting room while allowing remote users to hook into the conversation via a conference call.

FlexTelONE Quick Facts .........

* North American AccessRates Take advantage of our competetive pricing for participants originating from USA48, Canada, Alaska and Hawaii.

* Global Access Rates Participants can join conferences from over 50 origination countries with no additional surcharges. The per minute rate varies depending on the origination country.

* The Classic Conference This popular original version will handle up to 16 participant call legs at once.

* Enhanced Conference has Dial Out feature adding domestic and international participants at any valid destination phone number.

* No Operator Required Conferences are moderator initiated without using an operator or paying for high operator handled rates.

* Available Any Time reservationless conference service is available 24 hours a day for on demand usage.

* Corporate Support - Multiple Bridge Pins You may have simultaneous conferences by issuing separate bridge pins to all the people in your company.

* WebMan™ Conference Notify Tool - Schedule your own conference calls without reservations and notify all the participants simply and easily with Conference Notify Tool. Select the date and time and the participants and Conference Notify Tool does the rest.

* Call Minimum and Billing Increment - All completed destination calling card calls have a one minute minimum billing with 6 second increments thereafter.

* Daily Call Activity Report - You do not have to wait until your online bill is ready to see the calls you have made. Use WebManager Login to view your daily call detail.

For more information and to see all that is available for you go to ...... International Conference Calling


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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

How To Find The Right PBX Phone System For Your Business

You've decided that a PBX phone system is the right choice for your business telecommunication needs. Or .... you have a PBX system and need support, repair, replacement, installation assistance, or whatever.

What do you do?

Open up the phonebook and start calling around?

It can be much easier and less stressful than that.

Simply use the world's only real-time VAR search engine, VARSearch. You can easily find the right Cisco, Lucent, Avaya (and many others) dealer, technician and/or network equipment providers nearest you.

How it works:

* Select the brand name of the PBX phone system that interests you

* Select your project requirements

* Enter in your contact information and preferred contact method

The most qualified VARs will be sent your information so that they can contact you, assess your situation, and compete for your business.

You even get to see a list of who's available ... with customer ratings of their service too.

To get started using this free online tool just go here: PBX Phone System

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Monday, August 10, 2009

How To Find Low Cost Web Hosting Services

Trying to find a good web hosting provider that doesn't cost you an arm and a leg .... while still offering every feature you need to host, build, and maintain a web presence .... is not an easy task. In fact in can be quite stressful and frustrating.

But it doesn't have to be.

Here's a simple online tool that will help you find web hosting services ... and save money doing it.

They list providers who offer quality discounted web hosting and other useful web services. You can create or move a web site over to the pros, for about for 50% less than the 'big guys' are charging, without any headache or hassle.

I suggest you take advantage of this free tool .... you'll be glad you did.

Web Hosting Services


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Friday, August 07, 2009

DS3 Bandwidth and OCx (Optical Carrier) Lines Explained

DS3 lines and OCx circuits {such as as OC3 bandwidth) are the most common larger dedicated bandwidth choices used by businesses today. For an explanation of these options for your voice/data networks .... read on.

DS3 Bandwidth .....

A DS3 at full capacity is 45 Mbps. Many organizations graduate from multiple bonded T1s to some form of Fractional or Burstable DS3. Below are the most common forms this takes:

* Fractional DS3:

Just as some smaller organizations have utilized Fractional T1s, a Fractional DS3 is typically delivered over a Full DS3 access loop, but the Internet port speed is set at the client's desired level.

Typically, most carriers will require a minimum to deliver the service. Depending upon the carrier, they might require a customer to purchase at least 5-9 Mbps while others may require the customer to purchase 12 or more Mbps of Internet bandwidth over their fractional DS3.

* Burstable DS3:

Unlike a Fractional DS3, a Burstable DS3 may have its Internet port speed configured to the full 45 Mbps. However, the customer is not necessarily billed for the full 45 Mbps. Instead, the customer is billed only for the amount of bandwidth they use, typically in a tiered structure.

Carriers have different ways of partitioning these tiers, and may require a minimum usage while others may go strictly by usage. In other words, one carrier may bill one rate for 0-3 Mbps, 3.01-6 Mbps, 6.01-9 Mbps, 9.01-12 Mbps, 12.01-15 Mbps and so on. The customer may use an average 11 Mbps one month and an average of 7 Mbps the next, and in one scenario a carrier might just bill for the respective tier they fell into for each individual month. Whereas another carrier may bill a minimum amount for 9 Mbps, for example, and then a predetermined rate for additional bandwidth.

Regardless of the structure, it is a viable option for organizations in need of big bandwidth without paying for a Full DS3, while still having the bandwidth capabilities of a Full DS3, should they need it.

* Full DS3:

This option is the full un-capped 45 Mbps. Sometimes, customers may start out with a Fractional or Burstable DS3, but when the time comes, there is a cost threshold where it makes sense to go ahead and provision the whole DS3 port. When you get into this type of circuit, the pricing and quality can vary, depending on the service provider.

* OCX:

Similarly, OC (Optical Carrier) level pipes offer various flavors. Fractional, Burstable and Full OCX circuits are available from most Tier 1 NSPs. With ‘X' being the variable, there are several forms of Optical Carrier circuits.

Probably the most commonly used OCx circuit is OC3 bandwidth.

Rarely used, OC1 is a similar bandwidth increment to a DS3, where a DS3 is measured around 45 Mbps, an OC1 is rated around 51 Mbps. More common forms of Optical Carrier circuits include OC3 and OC12. OC3 running around 155 Mbps (similar to three DS3s), and OC12 running 622 Mbps (similar to four OC3s).

Most Tier 1 carriers run an OC48 (2.5 Gbps) - OC192 (10 Gbps) backbone, so if that's what runs the global Internet backbones, you can see that not many companies or carriers require service larger than an OC12. If they do, they will most likely just get another OC3 or OC12 and route it through diverse carriers, or at the vary least, over redundant routes through their preferred carrier.

To help you evaluate your current and forecasted bandwidth requirements .... evaluate the various offerings of multiple vendors .... and find the most competitive, reliable, and cost effective solution .... I recommend you take advantage of the free consulatative services available via Bandwidth Solution.

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Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Telecommunication Equipment .... How To Get More Out Of What You Already Have

In today's economic environment, more than ever businesses need to get the absolute most out of the telecommunication equipment they already have. Meanwhile, technology keeps changing and businesses want the latest technology.

The answer may be a lot easier than one would think.

You may have several options to get some of today's technology without having to do a full replacement of your current telecommunications equipment.

One option would be to see if your equipment manufacturer offers software upgrades to accomplish what you are looking for. Some of the latest technology that may be available via a software upgrade could include Unified Messaging, Hot Desking, Find Me Follow Me, Remote Access, Soft Phone and many others.

Another option would be to look into upgrading your voice mail. Depending on what you are looking for, everything you may want could be available in a new voice mail system, and you would not have to upgrade all of your equipment. Even if your equipment manufacturer doesn't offer you what you want in a new voice mail system, a third party voice mail system like one from AVST, may be the way to go. That would also allow you to upgrade your whole system later, and still keep the voice mail you purchased regardless of which brand you chose to move to on the new system.

Finally, and probably the most significant upgrade shy of replacing everything is to purchase a new switch that is compatible with your existing phones. Many company's latest phone systems will still operate your existing handsets, including Nortel, Siemens, Avaya and many others. This would give you the ability to connect multiple locations via VoIP and SIP, taking advantage of intercom dialing, collaboration, and much more, without having to throw out all your existing handsets.

You could also look into some open platforms like those available from Siemens (OpenScape) that can integrate with most any brand system you may have today. This may also be quite useful if you have multiple locations, and want one platform, but have several different systems in place today.

For example a Siemens OpenScape system can work with a Nortel system, ShoreTel, Cisco, Avaya, Toshiba, etc. This would give you the ability to connect multiple locations via VoIP and SIP without having to throw out all your existing handsets.

For help and information regarding telecommunication equipment go to:

Telecommunication Equipment Support And Service

[Courtesy of Frank Napolitano of Blackbox Technical Services]


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Monday, August 03, 2009

Hosted VoIP PBX .... Getting The Most Out Of What You Have

More and more companies are looking into what a hosted solution might do for their business. In today's economic environment, this may be a fit for your business. This may also be called a business VoIP solution

A hosted solution (hosted telephony) is basically a state of the art phone system that is held off site that gives you the customer the ability to get all your telecommunications features delivered via an IP connection, or SIP trunking. Your voice mail, unified messaging, and most off the actual phone system would reside elsewhere. It would still be programmed specific to your business, potentially following your extension set up you have today, allowing you set up auto attendants, and much more. Without the need to maintain your own phone system, and without having to lay out the cost for the phone system.

You as a customer would need to purchase handsets ranging in price from $100 each to over $500 each, and than pay a monthly hosting fee or per seat license. Much the same way many businesses have a hosted exchange server.

This option can save businesses tons of CapEx costs, and move some of them to an OppEx cost. Furthermore, it could save you maintenance costs and streamline the Moves Adds and Changes to a much simpler process with a web interface.

This also usually includes unlimited local calling and domestic long distance.

Hosted Solutions do not lack on features either. You can get very robust Unified Messaging, Faxing Applications, and Call Center Functionality out of a good hosted product offering.

For help in finding a hosted solution for your business go to: Business VoIP Solution

[Courtesy of Frank Napolitano of Blackbox Technical Services]

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