Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Smoothstone Offers Awareness In the Cloud

The notion of the business telephone as the big black clunky thing that sits on your desk and tethers you with a curly cord is fast fading into history. Today’s business communications is often mobile and multidimensional, including chatting, instant messaging, file transfers, Web based applications and collaboration as well as conferencing. Is the venerable corporate PBX system still up to the task?

Unified communicaitons in the cloud encourage collaboration.When the old phone system becomes a limitation to productivity, many companies now look to the clouds for answers. A major innovator in moving business communications to the cloud is Smoothstone IP Communications. Their VoiceMaxx cloud-based PBX platform goes beyond fixed mobile convergence to unify all types of communication, including text and voice. Now they’re making that system cloud aware.

The Smoothstone Awareness, Messaging and Presence (AMP) ties co-workers together through a cloud-based communications platform that knows the status of everyone in the system. No more guessing if one of your team members is available or not. Remember phone tag? That’s yesterday’s problem. AMP will instantly show you if someone is “free to chat”, “online” or “away.” It also knows if you are “on the phone” or have set your status to “do not disturb.”

Sounds a little like some of the instant messaging and social networking tools that you are already familiar with, doesn’t it? The problem with the popular public apps is that they were designed for the public and don’t contain the rigorous controls needed for corporate security and governance. Smoothstone establishes a private version of these popular apps within the VoiceMaxx cloud. AMP has the directory integration, encryption, chat logging and virus protection you need for corporate-wide deployment.

Consider today’s smartphone. It’s as much a mobile computing terminal as a telephone. If all you are concerned about is that you can call back to the office and get your voicemail messages, you are missing out on a lot of the productivity advantage of this tool. The ideal situation is that you have an integrated voice and data environment and that it stays with you no matter where you go.

Up until recently, the best that can be achieved is to carry both a cell phone and a laptop (now notebook or netbook) computer. That way you had access to both your computing environment and your business phone. BlackBerry was first to integrate voice and messaging into one device. Now iPhone and Android have taken over this function with much more emphasis on applications, especially cloud applications, as a way to integrate mobile and fixed office tools.

We’re crossing a threshold now, from a collection of ad-hoc solutions to a truly seamless system that incorporates everything you need into one unified system. The advantage is that all these things work together by design rather than by kludge and workaround. It’s natural that the integrated environment be powered from the cloud, since we rarely stay in one spot for long. Smoothstone’s VoiceMaxx is a big step forward in that direction and a look at how we’ll communicate in the future.

Have you outgrown your once adequate but now primitive PBX telephone system? Before rushing out and spending a small fortune to upgrade to a bigger and better box, take a close look at cloud communication solutions to see if they are a better fit and lower cost option.

Click to check pricing and features or get support from a Telarus product specialist.

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