Google has been leading the way for decades in technology with their operating system (OS) and has recently begun quietly bridging the feature gap with office phones. From their initial launch of Andromeda as an integrated OS in 2007 to their current launch of the smart phone, Pixel, Google’s eye for human use factors are … Read more
Some industry participants argued that modern telephony technologies have made communications hardware obsolete. These individuals believe that due to big jumps in hosted services, and due to the increase in telephony software options, the
In fact, incoming data indicates the demand for telephony hardware may be growing in line with increasing demand for telephony software. average business will jettison their telephony hardware and opt for entirely soft and remote systems. We’ve argued this isn’t the case for some time now, and an increasing amount of data and recent industry projections seem to prove us right.
How could this be? What’s driving this trend? Unified communications.
Right now we’re starting to see a lot of convergence between mobile devices and desktop telephony equipment. Modern VoIP handsets are starting to stock up on functionality and applications that has, so far, been the sole domain of smartphones. This is true for touchscreens and app-compatible operating systems.
Convergence in Unified Communications
When you take the smartphone dynamics to desktop phones, you will notice an interesting trend.
Microsoft’s next Windows operating system is going to interact seamlessly with Microsoft’s next generation of mobile OS. In fact, Windows 8’s mobile and desktop/laptop operating systems are doing more than merely “converging”. They will operate closer than just “seamlessly”. Windows for your computer is becoming the exact same OS as Windows for your next smartphone.
Provided, of course, you use a Windows phone for Unified Communications, which very, very, very few people do. But the relatively low popularity of Windows mobile devices needs to be taken alongside the continued popularity of Microsoft operating systems. Especially among the government and enterprise sets of users. Will the next generation of VoIP handsets run Windows 8?
Even if Microsoft went bankrupt next year the company’s decision to utilize the same operating system among desktop and mobile devices is highly telling about their vision of the future of communications technology. They envision the movement towards mobile competition including Apple and Google (owner of the popular Android mobile platform). Over the last year Apple has been steadily aligning their mobile and desktop operating systems by streamlining their desktop environment. Recently they began to establish uniform naming practices across for applications across their devices. Google, meanwhile, has been getting their feet wet in the world of desktop computers, ostensibly in response to the wild success of the company’s mobile efforts. There are presently several SIP handsets that run on Google’s Android.
Ok, it’s not really a PBX handset. Altigen iFusion SmartStation is a Bluetooth Speakerphone and a charging station with a handset designed to be used with an iPhone. By design it was meant to serve as a charging station and replace your office handset. I have to admit, that a thought of losing my desk phone and replacing it with a SIP softphone app on my iPhone 4S sounded enticing. One device for all needs! Now, I can really take advantage of our hosted PBX. Considering that I need a convenient place to charge my iPhone anyway, why not put it in front of me and use it as a desktop handset?
Grandstream’s entry into VoIP market resembles that of auto-makers Hyundai and Kia. They had entered VoIP arena with ultra-cheap GXP 2000 SIP phones. Having to deal with their earlier series I can certainly tell you that they were of questionable quality in both: software, hardware and technical support aspects. GXV3175 is a rather ambitious attempt at a multimedia phone that supports video, Wi-Fi, POE (power over Ethernet), high definition voice and allows you to run applications.
Why haven’t you moved your company to the hosted PBX yet?
What do you mean “you’ve only had your current phone system for five years”? Did you keep your cell phone for five years?
Maybe you think that VoIP technology doesn’t move as fast? It does. Well, with the hosted PBX the cool thing is that in most cases, all you need to do to stay current is buy some new handsets! The rest of it practically upgrades itself assuming your service provider wants to keep your business over time.
Easy or not, it’s not uncommon for many companies to not touch their office phone systems for nearly a decade. The problem with this approach is that business technologies evolve and you have to evolve with them or you run a real risk of relying on some antiquated business practices which your clients will sooner or later notice.
Today, if your PBX handset is more than three years old, it may be time to upgrade it to something a bit more recent.
I talked to a friend recently who was full of excitement over the news from his employer that the sales team (of which he belongs) was going to receive new smartphones. His excitement was easy to understand: the entire 50 person sales team was getting brand new iPhones that were going to replace their SIP handsets and older PBX desk phones. Considering the cost of smartphones and voice quality concerns, you understand my curiosity about what would drive the company to do such a thing. Given all the changes in the mobile market and where the future of telephony seems to be headed, I tried to follow the company logic.
As computer use becomes ubiquitous, it is increasingly desirable to communicate with them in the same way that we communicate with one another: using human speech. Voice or Speech Recognition technology aims to do just this. Personally, I fell in love with the concept of voice recognition ever since I first saw “Star Trek, The New Generation” series. Unfortunately, my first attempt at making a productive use of speech recognition in Microsoft Windows 3.1 was rather disappointing.
Today our ability to use voice recognition is limited to issuing system commands to speed up familiar functions. So what prevents us from talking to our personal computers and phone systems (those are quickly converging into one) ? What you may not realize is that speech recognition is a rather complicated and resource intensive task.
Humans easily and efficiently relay information via speech despite many complications, including background noise, slips related to spontaneous speech (stammers, filled pauses, false starts, etc.) and the inherent variability of human speech.
The rise of the Smart Phone has been dramatic. It seems like everyone has one of these devices these days, and nearly every single Smart Phone owner raves about their device. Smart Phones certainly represent attractive and powerful telephony technology. Not only are they sleek and stylish, Smart Phones also provide a huge range of features and applications which you can take with you everywhere you go. While Smart Phones have presented a superior alternative to previous mobile phones, does that mean they stand to replace all telephony devices?