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postheadericon ROI in Unified Communication

The return on investment in unified communications
Unified communication can improve business processes, save time, make employees more productive. Susanne wants to get in touch with co-worker Henry on a pressing business matter. Susanne has several ways to reach Henry; however she does not know which one will reach him momentarily. She sends him an instant message, but she doesn't get a response. She calls his desk phone and leaves voice mail, then tries his mobile phone. Finally, Susanne sends an e-mail or SMS message in the hope that he'll read it on his mobile device.

The result? Susanne did not reach Henry in time and maybe lost a sale as a result. Henry now has messages in multiple places that he must retrieve and delete. The problem isn't that John and Mary lack communication devices. Quite the opposite -- they have too many ways of communicating and those methods are not unified. These disjointed applications make communications more complex, leading to frustration and reduced efficiency. And it's only getting worse. Knowledge workers are increasingly distributed and virtual: working from multiple locations.

Enter unified communications
The answer is unified communications, in which real-time applications are integrated so individuals can manage all their communications together, in both desktop and mobile environments.

Expect to see UC adoption happen gradually and steadily. There is no one way or the “right” way to implement UC, and the way in which companies approach UC will be based on their specific needs and environments. UC adoption generally starts with the people who need it the most, and then spreads throughout the enterprise, once the benefits become more apparent. Initial adopters of UC are geographically dispersed workers who need to collaborate with team members and colleagues. Organizations must look at their specific operational justifications and requirements for UC, which should come from the business management and end-user side of the house.

The challenge for many IT executives is to make the business case for unified communications. This can be tricky, because purported productivity benefits can be hard to quantify.

However, business cases do exist. Companies see unified communications as a way to improve internal communications and increase productivity. There also is the potential for cost savings.

Comtico can assist you in building the business case or finding the best product, or mix of products, for your company.

 

postheadericon HD Voice

HD Voice
Short for high-definition voice aka wideband voice. In Internet telephony, it refers to the use of wideband technology to provide a better audio experience in voice communications.

Traditional telephony is based on sampling the sound stream 8,000 times a second, and constraining the sound spectrum to the range between 200Hz and 3.3KHz - and fitting it into a 64Kbps bandwidth. In HD voice, a wideband codec doubles the sampling rate and more than doubles the width of the sound spectrum reproduced, from 50Hz to 7KHz. This adds significant depth and nuance to the transmitted sound without taking up more bandwidth.
HD voice technology uses Digital Signal Processing (DSP) technology to capture and transmit the higher quality sound. Several wideband codecs are currently being used for HD voice include G.722 and G.722.1.

It is however not enough to improve the potential quality of the sound. Many of today’s telephones are equipped with microphones and speakers that will not do justice to HD Voice so the phone manufacturers will need to get on the bandwagon. Just as with TV technology where HD TV was on the horizon for a very long time, it will take time and require new devices to take advantage of the improved quality. And just as with HDTV, once you have experienced the quality of HD Voice it is hard to go back!

HD Voice benefits:

  • Clearer overall sound quality
  • Easier to recognize voices, distinguish confusing sounds and understand accented speakers
  • Ease of deciphering words that have the close sounds of ‘s’ and ‘f’ and others,
  • Ability to hear faint talkers and to understand two-way talking
  • More attention to the call content and less brain function to try hearing what people are saying; resulting in increased productivity and less fatigue on business calls
  • Better understanding using a speakerphone or in the presence of background noise

Some operators are taking the plunge now:
"We expect 100% of devices in our portfolio to be HD by the end of 2011," said Yves Maitre, senior vice president of mobile multimedia and devices at Orange.

Where is the value proposition?
The value prop lies in clear and improved communication. There will literally be fewer misunderstandings. People will be much more comfortable with conference calls, thereby working more efficiently.

When is the right time to implement HD Voice; what is it going to cost and what is the ROI?

Comtico can assist you in answering these and other questions about HD Voice.

 

postheadericon Mobile Voice over IP

Mobile VoIP
While Voice over IP is accepted as the fixed line telephony replacement technology, most people are not yet familiar with Mobile VoIP. In it’s simplest form, Mobile Voip may be utilized by firing up a softphone on a mobile device. As an example, most Nokia phones includes built in client software that may be used as a regular VoIP phone when the mobile phone is in a wireless LAN environment. VoIP clients also exist for iPhone, Windows Mobile and Android based phones. Today these clients may be used as a supplement to the regular mobile phone service, mainly in order to save money on long distance calls. In the future; however the VoIP client may well become the primary client on the mobile phone while the traditional GSM or CDMA based voice technology is phased out. Existing 3G, and certainly the upcoming 4G, mobile networks will be fully capable of supporting voice as just one of many data applications that are routed via IP. There are many ways to support mobile VoIP from a technical point of view; however if the operators are to break free of the old PSTN as the only common denominator, and the only way to interoperate, a new overall architecture is required. The only well known option for this is IP Multimedia Services aka IMS.

IMS
The IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) is an architectural framework for delivering Internet Protocol Multimedia Services. It was originally designed by the wireless standards body 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP), as a part of the vision for evolving mobile networks beyond GSM (and GPRS). Later, the IMS architecture was updated to include CDMA and fixed line, enabling an operator to operate rich data, voice and video services within a single architecture. It will of course take years to implement IMS and it would not be the first time if it turns out that the industry finds a different approach to harvesting the associated benefits; in the meantime there is FMC.

FMC
Fixed Mobile Convergence can be seen as a way to get the best of the old world telephony features combined with (or converged) the mobility features such as IM and presence. There are advantages to both the operator and the enterprise by deploying an FMC solution. A number of FMC products exist but there are no clear market leaders.

What will you do as an operator or an enterprise? Bank on IMS or implement some FMC solution to bridge the implementation gap without being left behind in efficiency and competitiveness? Comtico can assist you in making a qualified decision.

 
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