Tag Archives: Telecom

BroadSource EMU SaaS allows BroadWorks UC users to better manage the complexity of subscriber configuration information

LONDON, Mar-17-2017 — /EPR TELECOM NEWS/ — BroadSource Europe Ltd, a specialist global software development and telecommunications engineering company, today announced the launch of EMU SaaS (Software as a Service) platform for its existing and prospective European customers.

EMU, developed by BroadSource, allows global Service Providers, who utilise the BroadWorks™ UC platform, to better manage the day-to-day complexity of subscriber configuration information. EMU is already available in Asia as a SaaS and is now also available for European Service Providers via the EMU SaaS delivery model.

Fifteen years of telco engineering experience, coupled with today’s Cloud delivery technologies means that EMU can now solve Service Provider problems as a Cloud Service across Europe.

Haydn Faltyn, BroadSource co-founder and CEO noted, “We are so pleased to be launching EMU SaaS to our European customers. This technology is unique to the Cloud UC ecosystem. Our customers have been benefitting from EMU operating within their own environment or our Asian point of presence for a number of years now. This next milestone means that our European Service Providers customers can now also benefit from a subscription to EMU SaaS. The power of EMU is solving really practical, everyday problems for our customers and their Cloud UC environments based on BroadWorks™ technology. We are delighted with the feedback so far and excited to have EMU available in Europe

About EMU
EMU is an Extraction, Manipulation and Update (EMU) platform for Cloud UC developed by BroadSource and specialising in the BroadWorks™ platform. With just one click, Service Providers can:

  • EXTRACT every piece of information from their BroadWorks™ environment to audit, analyse or backup customer group configurations
  • MANIPULATE thousands of configuration attributes in seconds, preparing for migrations
  • UPDATE, en masse, configuration settings, saving hundreds of ‘clicks’ and many hours

Our European Customers
Using their own secure BroadWorks™ credentials, Service Providers and their partners can perform one or all of the services hosted within the BroadSource multi-tenanted, fully redundant EMU SaaS instance. EMU now performs many subscriber manipulation tasks that where once thought of as impossible. As Cloud UC subscriptions take over premise PBX numbers, EMU is perfectly positioned to allow the Service Provider to rapidly scale, contain operational costs and simplify the management of large volumes of subscriber configuration data. Service Providers in Europe now have an array of ‘every day use cases’ to better manage their BroadWorks ™ powered Cloud UC platform.

SOURCE: EuropaWire

Mobile World Conference 2017: Soracom launches IoT connectivity services in Europe

BARCELONA, Mar-2-2017 — /EPR TELECOM NEWS/ — Soracom announced this week at Mobile World Conference its launch of IoT connectivity services in Europe and confirmed commitment to growing IoT by eliminating the barriers related to security, price, speed-to-value and scalability that currently limit IoT development.

The Internet of things offers endless possibilities. With IoT adoption growing quickly, developers are finding that security and scalability remain key challenges. For start-ups and developers, typical enterprise-grade solutions are out of reach, and more affordable solutions often lack crucial security features.

“We offer low start-up costs, no binding contracts and a flexible pay-as-you-go model for every use case, from garage-level prototyping to massive industrial deployments,” said Parag Mittal, Chief Commercial Officer of Soracom. “We need a sustainable Internet of Things. A smart meter that consumes lot of power for onboard encryption and data transmission to the cloud is not that smart. By reducing power and data consumption on the device side, and delivering a private network as a service for everyone, we ensure a secure, scalable, sustainable ecosystem for IoT.”

“Soracom aims to use its platform to contribute to the overall growth of the IoT industry,” said Ken Tamagawa, Chief Executive Officer of Sorcom. “Current IoT connectivity providers do not really offer secure and swift delivery of services that are affordable and available for everyone in a democratized way. Connecting devices to the internet or the cloud is the easy part. Securing devices and data is the most critical. If it’s on the public internet, it’s hackable. Our customers connect their devices directly to the cloud, using a private network provided by Soracom instead of public internet.”

Widely recognized as one of Japan’s leading IoT technology providers, Soracom uses a unique approach and architecture to provide secure data transfer at lower costs for its global customers and brings this technology to users across all industries. Canon, Konica MinoltaSafecast, Komatsu, Omniflow, and Enerbrain are just a few among the 5,000 clients Soracom connects today.

Soracom’s SIM cards are tailored for IoT devices and can be managed through APIs and a web console that allow convenient, real-time activation/deactivation of SIMs, traffic monitoring, network configuration and visualization, storage and management of data, and many more detailed operations.

SOURCE: EuropaWire

DNA Cellular Going Global

DNA Cellular and Data Network Affiliate have partnered with Chris Greco, The King of Wireless Activation. The DNA Partnership will take DNA to go beyond its recent accomplishment of becoming one of the fastest growing companies in the world, bringing in a staggering 100,000+ Independent Distributors in 60 Days. Industry leaders have taken notice and have approached to get partnerships with DNA.

DNA will launch simultaneously in the US and 60+ countries worldwide. Using Technology, save up to 95% of the cost of Telecom today. No Credit Check, No Contracts DNA & Chris Greco the Guru of the cell phone industry will make history with Unlimited Talk & Text for $10 Monthly. Chris Said to D.N.A. “Lets rock the Cellular World with (BEP) Beat everyones Prices and let’s start with Unlimited Talk & Text for $10 Monthly.

Chris give DNA a $10 Monthly Product to sell but DNA can give the field $4 of the $10 This means on this simple $10 Monthly Product DNA will be able to pay out a RESIDUAL $2 monthly to ALL Affiliates and a .20 cent monthly residual over ride to all PRO Affiliates up to TEN LEVELS of Customers. We will be able to offer service to the world, with more options for consumers from day one of our global launch. I-phone users $79.99 per month flat rates. Wow that’s %50 off current cost Family plans for $109 with unlimited talk, text and web.

Free phones with the unlimited text and talk plans (Samsung flip and LGVX 6100 phones). You will be able to tether your phone. Can port phone numbers from any carrier with the exception of China. China would have to get new numbers. Will be able to buy US airtime to send back to friends and family in other countries @ 8 to 20 percent less than the country they are in offer. GSM phones have to be unlocked.

DNA will have over 211 brick and mortar stores that you will be able to utilize for recruiting, obtain services and as a fulfillment center. You can just go to your local DNA store to get help and not have to fool with support tickets like other mlm companies. We will beat everyone in the mlm and retail industry. We will also offer a $19.99 plan for the disabled hearing impaired that gives them unlimited text, email and web. Can you say WOW? We care about you as a distributor, affiliate and customer. We will be the Walmart of the Internet. You will see DNA cellular stores popping up all over the world. Join my team today to position yourself. It’s FREE to join.

Via EPR Network
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MigraX To Distribute 3CX In Sweden To Its Reseller Channel And Offer Special PBX Bundles

3CX (www.3cx.com), the international developer of the award-winning 3CX Phone System for Windows has announced a distribution agreement with MigraX AB (www.migrax.se), a leading distributor of networking equipment in Sweden.

As an introductory offer, MigraX and 3CX will be offering special bundles of the 3CX Phone System and Grandstream hardware, which will translate into discounts of up to 30%.

MigraX distributes Voice over IP (VoIP), IP-telephony, secure firewalls and network security solutions among other products in Sweden. The company has now agreed to make 3CX a part of their commitment to high quality. That’s because MigraX finds the unique 3CX product to be one of the best solutions on the market when it comes to functionality, price and performance.

Lasse Larsson, the CEO of MigraX AB, said: “3CX is the rising star of the VoIP PBX market and we are excited to be able to distribute their products. 3CX offers an easy to use and cost effective solution that saves companies money and increases their productivity”.

MigraX has a strong expertise in VoIP and so is well placed to recommend 3CX in such glowing terms. 3CX stands out from the competition because it is a special software-based IP PBX which can replace a traditional hardware-based PBX.

About MigraX:

MigraX AB distributes IP-telephony, Voice over IP and network security solutions to more than 300 resellers across Sweden.

About 3CX:

3CX is an international developer of telecommunications software, headquartered in Europe with international offices in locations around the world including the UK, USA, Germany, Cyprus, Malta, Australia and Hong Kong. It is a Microsoft Gold Certified partner which is backed by an experienced management and development team. The 3CX Phone System for Windows product has earned Windows Server 2003 Certification and received numerous awards. These include the Communications Solutions 2007 Award, the Windowsnetworking.com Gold Award, the Windows IT Pro magazine 2008 Editor’s Best Award. Computer Shopper Magazine also recognised the company’s commitment to innovation and quality with a Best Buy Award. Visit www.3cx.com for more information.

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Award Winning Call Center Services By Personalized Communications, Inc

Personalized Communications, Inc The Association of TeleServices International (ATSI) is a national trade association that was founded in 1942. They represent live answering services and honor those businesses with awards that provide outstanding telephone answering service.

percomimage.jpg (229×169)

The exclusive Awards of Excellence are determined by the quality and level of service for all aspects of the call. The caller must be considered first during the entire call and the caller must be believe that they are either the most important person to the operator or that the caller’s problem is the most significant issue for the operator on the other end of the line. Businesses that use call center services understand that the way the operator manages every call from start to finish is extremely significant in building customer relationships and in the determination for the successful attainment of repeat business. Regardless of the circumstances a caller should always be provided high quality service by attentive and undistracted operators.

In order to evaluate a Telephone answering service or inbound call service, ATSI contracts with independent judges in order to assess services throughout the United States over a six month period. The metrics employed include: courtesy, response time, accuracy and overall customer service. Call center services receiving a score of 80% or more in all categories is awarded the Award of Excellence.

Personal Communications, Inc was awarded the 2009 Silver Plus Award of Excellence for their consistently reliable and high quality service by ATSI. It is a significant milestone that helps to assure businesses that Personal Communications, Inc provides excellent call center services.

In part, much of Personal Communications, Inc success has come from their complete and through training program. Employees are not only expected to meet a high standard of customer service prior to customer contact, but they are also required to maintain the high standard throughout their employment. The training program is continual, which includes customer service skills training as well as technology-related training for optimal equipment use.

For more information regarding Personal Communications, Inc. visit their website at http://www.per-com.com.

Personal Communications, Inc is a premier 24 hour a day 7 day a week call center services business. With over thirty years in the industry, they act as an Inbound call center with a full range of flexible Call center services that can be personalized to particular business needs. They are committed to impeccable customer service.

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3CX Voice Application Designer Allows Building Of Powerful Voice Solutions With Point And Click Ease

3CX today announced the availability of 3CX Voice Application Designer (VAD), a tool that allows companies to easily create powerful voice based solutions that automate everyday business processes and thus save time and improve customer service. Until now, building Voice Applications required code and therefore was a complex and expensive task.

By replacing code with drag and drop, the whole process of designing, deploying and testing a voice application has been immensely simplified and is now within reach for many more businesses. For example, 3CX VAD can create a voice application that queries the caller for a customer number, then validates this number against a database and routes the call based on customer type. A repetitive task can be eliminated and valuable agent time is freed up which accelerates the process of helping a customer.

How it works

3CX VAD itself is a graphical tool that allows you to put together the various components/decisions of a voice application by dragging and dropping ‘building blocks’. To create menus with caller options and actions, a user just drags one or more building blocks onto the design window and configures them accordingly. Once done, 3CX VAD outputs a VXML script that can be deployed on 3CX Phone System for Windows.

Ready Application Building blocks

3CX VAD comes out of the box with a s e l e c t i o n of components or ‘building blocks’ that can be used in an application. Some of these building blocks include: Playback, User input, Record, Disconnect, Transfer, Database Access, Send Email, File management, Code execution, Web interaction, Socket client and more. With the inbuilt debugger, a user can troubleshoot a voice application by stepping through the application.

Availability & pricing

A Free edition is available with a reduced s e t of Application Building blocks. The commercial edition of 3CX VAD is available at an introductory price of  1495 euros or $1995. In addition, upgrade insurance is available for a nominal fee of 1 euro / 1$ until year end. 3CX VAD can be downloaded here:
http://www.3cx.com/downloads/3CXVAD2.msi.

The manual is available at this link: 
http://www.3cx.com/manual/3CXVADManual2.pdf
.

Evaluation / Community support is available through the dedicated 3CX VAD forums at:http://www.3cx.com/forums/3cx-voice-application-designer-vad-27/

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RE/MAX Saves More Than $80,000 By Switching To 3CX

The RE/MAX Eastside Brokers Inc. and RE/MAX Metro Realty Inc. brokerages have just switched their telephony provider to 3CX and are reaping the benefits of a streamlined phone system for Windows which was inexpensive and easy to install.

RE/MAX provides training and technology to real estate agents via two offices and hundreds of staff spread across the Pacific North West. As these award-winning brokerages deal with up to 50 simultaneous calls from clients as well as 400 DID’s, they needed a sophisticated yet easy-to-use VoIP PBX system which would deliver value for money in a recession stricken economy.

After searching for quotes from many different companies and software providers, RE/MAX IT manager Dustin T. Adam found that using 3CX could make the company a massive annual saving of $20,000. This was on top of the even greater one-off installation saving conservatively estimated at $80,000.

Dustin said: “I started looking for a replacement to our aging telecommunications infrastructure and, like all good managers doing research, received quotes from a number of different companies and vendors.

“The average price for a replacement infrastructure, including all the desk phones, was nearly $100,000 or more. Doing most of the design and implementation myself along with Summit Services, a 3CX Premium partner, that cost was somewhere around $20,000. It didn’t take a rocket scientist to work out which was the better option.”

3CX is an excellent choice for SMB clients in these difficult economic times because it provides a number of different cost savings. For instance, RE/MAX was able to cut costs by unifying the phone systems for its two offices in Bellevue and Seattle. Another advantage of 3CX was increased mobility as the system allows RE/MAX staff to do business at all hours of the day and in any location.

3CX also saves on administration time as only one system needs to be administered and no third party is required for programming purposes. Neither will it be expensive to further expand the system in future by adding extra phones lines. With 3CX the process is much easier than traditional or proprietary PBX.

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BT Brings Unlimited Calls To Businesses

BT has announced it is the first UK communications provider to offer unlimited fixed line calling packages for small businesses. The new high value BT Business One Plan Inclusive packages offer unlimited calling minutes to UK landlines, UK mobiles, international destinations and 0845 and 0870 numbers for a fixed fee.

BT Business is also offering businesses greater savings by introducing 500 free UK calling minutes per calendar month per line (fixed or VoIP).

Available to customers that (re)sign to OnePlan by 30.04.10. Minimum yearly spend and requires commitment to 2 core products. Fee – £15 per month – further reduced to £12.50 per month if customers take the unlimited package on a VoIP line. Fair usage policy applies. Offer ends 30.04.10. Exclusions, terms and conditions apply.

Businesses opting for one of the new BT Business One Plan Inclusive packages can also combine unlimited calls with a range of communications options including broadband and mobile, consolidating their fixed, mobile and broadband spend under One Plan.

Bill Murphy managing director, BT Business, said: “Giving unlimited fixed line calling to businesses in this way is a first and will shake-up the market. Businesses are continuously striving to manage their costs better, but also need to stay connected to their customers to thrive. With a low fixed monthly fee we are the only provider to offer businesses such great peace of mind. By removing the worry that unexpected costs can bring, companies now have more time to focus on what they do best and look after their business.”

BT Business One Plan is a great way to put big company benefits within the reach of small companies,” said Chris Caffery, company secretary, Homecarers – a care service provider for the elderly based in Liverpool. “Finally there is an offer that allows smaller enterprises to manage their day to day communications while helping to save money. It’s reassuring to know that every type of call is covered so we can worry less about the number of calls staff are making and focus more on enabling them to work flexibly and respond faster to people’s needs.”

Under BT Business One Plan all service and billing enquiries are dealt with through one number, and customers will receive one bill for all services. BT Business Broadband offers a 99.99% reliable broadband service; nine out of 10 faults are resolved in under four hours and 95% of calls to the 24/7 UK help desk are answered within 30 seconds.

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Broadband Customers Fork Out GBP6 Million Calling For Help

2009 has been another flourishing year for the broadband industry, with consumers spending a whopping GBP2.6 billion on their service. And yet a survey of over 12,000 customers reveals that all is not well in broadband-land when it comes to getting help when things go wrong. Only 1 in 2 broadband customers (55%) are satisfied with the technical support offered by their broadband company and nearly GBP6 million a year is spent calling technical helplines.

In fact, a staggering 16 million calls are made to technical support lines every year, with calls lasting an average of 17 minutes. However, while a number of broadband firms now offer free calls to technical support, at least 1 in 3 customers (36%) still face charges of up to 10p per minute, on top of a 9p call set-up fee, costing up to GBP1.75 for the average phone call.

According to the uSwitch.com survey, nearly six million broadband customers have called for technical help over the last year, with network connection problems cited as the most common complaint – when a broadband service fails to work or is frequently cut off.

General service interruptions are a common complaint for over one million customers, and a further million have reported problems with their wireless router. Customers usually have to call technical helplines at least twice to fix the same problem – just 4 out of 10 customers (41%) have successfully resolved a problem in just one call.

Table 1

Main reasons for calling technical support

1. Network connection problems (37%)
2. Service interruptions (18%)
3. Wireless router problems (17%)
4. Set-up problems (8%)
5. Issues with speed (6%)
6. Other / don’t know (14%)

Source: uswitch.com

Shockingly, customers spend over a third of their time on the phone waiting to be put through to an advisor. On the average 17 minute call customers report being left waiting on hold for six minutes. There are significant differences in call wait times between the broadband companies: O2, which came top for technical support in the survey with 75% satisfied, keeps customers waiting an average of two minutes to speak to an advisor, while TalkTalk, with 56% satisfied, keeps customers waiting an average of 12 minutes. Orange and Tiscali customers were the least satisfied with technical support with scores of 42% and 47% respectively.

Via EPR Network
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3CX Phone System Gets Chatty With Instant Messaging Feature

3CX today announced a new version of its popular VoIP PBX for Windows, 3CX Phone System v8.0. With the new instant messaging feature, 3CX Phone System becomes a complete VoIP Unified Communications Solution. Other new features include improved IP phone management & provisioning, integrated soft phone, find me follow me and support for the new low cost Cisco SMB phones. 3CX has also expanded its PSTN connectivity options by supporting the new low cost Berofix cards.

“3CX Phone System has gone from strength to strength – it’s now installed in more then 10,000 companies worldwide and version 8 can scale up to 512 simultaneous calls and 2000+ extensions on a single server. The new version increases employee productivity and at the same time reduces TCO because of its easy administration.” said Nick Galea, 3CX CEO “Customers already report significant savings, and with support for lower cost VoIP gateways and the prices of IP phones coming done, ROI will accelerate even further.”

Full CRM integration

Version 8 now includes full integration with Microsoft Outlook & Salesforce.com. Users of the system can automatically launch calls from Outlook without having to enter the number on the phone. All calls are automatically logged for better reporting. Inbound calls can automatically be matched to a customer record based on caller ID.

Improved 3CX Assistant

The 3CX Assistant, a Windows utility that allows desktop call control and shows presence of other users, now includes the ability to trigger recording of a phone call, as well as an integrated corporate and personal phonebook for each launching of calls. It also features an integrated soft phone, and can be used from remote locations.

Improved Call Center features

3CX now boasts advanced Call center features at a fraction of the price of traditional PBX solutions. A ‘Call Barge-in’ feature allows supervisors to literally barge in to calls. A prioritized Hunt Queue strategy allows the order to be determined in which calls should be distributed to agents. With this queue strategy it is possible to do skills based routing. A ‘ring all’ queue strategy was also added.

Mobility

Additional mobility features have been added. Calls forwarded to a mobile can be sent to company voice mail if not answered or refused by the callee, making the call forwarding feature more practical. In addition the web based MyPhone user Portal was extended to include new pages for Outbound/Inbound/Missed calls. The MyPhone portal now also includes a new, easier to use, Call Forwarding interface, as well as an extension monitoring page. Presence of other users, as well as key extension settings, can now be monitored from anywhere in the world and from any operating system!

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New Satellite Broadband Services for Military Personnel and Defense Contractors

TS2 Satellite Technologies company is introducing new satellite link products to the international market. These types of telecommunication products are mainly used by the companies that execute contracts in the Middle East and Asia, as well as by soldiers that are stationed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

New Satellite Broadband Services for Military Personnel and Defense Contractors

“Purchased bands give us unlimited possibilities of configuration and setting any telecommunication connections from the Middle East region and South-Western Asia. We can now build networks of any size on such satellites as Intelsat 10-02, Intelsat 901, ABS-1, ArabSat Badr-4 and NSS-6.” – said Marcin Frackiewicz, the President of TS2.

New TS2 Satellite Technologies http://www.ts2.pl offer is a broadband Internet and corporate networks based on satellites. The operator’s broadband services enable two-way data transfer within the network and simultaneous Internet access. The company provides all dedicated VSAT services for demanding customers: VSAT Private Network, broadcasting services, SCPC/SCPC, SCPC/DVB, MESH services, STAR/DAMA, VSAT Mini Hub Solution and VNO.

‘We provide secure and encrypted satellite connections particularly for the military sector, for any military units, literally in any part of the world, on the national firing ground and during all international trainings.’ – said Frackiewicz. He also added: ‘We have mobile and stationary solutions dedicated to work in difficult conditions’.

TS2 satellite services are used by U.S. Department of State, United States Marine Corps (USMC), U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Australian Defense Force (ADF), Command of Polish Navy, Air Force Institute of Technology, Lockheed Martin Information Technology, Halliburton Energy Services, KBR, General Dynamics Information Technology, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, L-3 Communications Vertex Aerospace, and U.S. Naval Research Laboratory.

Via EPR Network
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Cisco Has Revealed The Winners To Its Lifestyles Of The Tech Frustrated Competition

The Lifestyles of the Tech Frustrated competition started early July and offered customers the chance to win a Flip Mino HD Camcorder. The competition closed in August and now winners have been selected. The winners and their stories can be found at our Lifestyles of the Tech Frustrated website. Gerard f r o m Albuquerque – wrote a poem about home networking – and was considered one of the stand-out entries.

Entries ranged f r o m fixing shared printer issues to rogue wireless networks with stories coming f r o m all over America.

Cisco invited entrants to tell their stories that depict the challenges and advantages of home networking. Cisco wanted to hear about what customers use their home networks for and what they accomplish in their lives through technology. The competition also asked how customers’ problems were solved through the use of the Network Magic software.

In response, Cisco customers’ discussed Network Magic and how the home network software has helped them with their home networking nightmares. This feedback will help prove to be invaluable and go towards helping with the future development of Cisco home network management software.

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Metro Ethernet is now an affordable Internet option for Michigan companies, thanks to price reductions by Waveform Technology

In many areas Metro Ethernet Internet service is reaching record low prices, starting around $1300 a month. Waveform representative Noel Montales attributes the price reductions to the continued development of Michigan’s fiber optic capacity. “The availability of Metro Ethernet has just exploded recently. It’s much less expensive for us to provision these circuits and I hope we can help the Michigan economy by making these high level services more affordable for customers.”

Waveform’s price reductions come in the 5 Mbps to 100 Mbps range, making high bandwidth options cost-effective for smaller companies. The Ethernet protocol makes these circuits flexible and inexpensive, while maintaining the same high quality standard as more costly Internet connections.

Business bandwidth needs are always expanding and changing, but many companies have outgrown their old Internet connections. A few years ago most offices only needed their Internet connection to exchange email and download some websites, but now many companies are expanding the way they do business by adding streaming media, video conferencing, disaster recovery and other high-bandwidth applications.

About Waveform Technology
Waveform Technology is a privately held facility-based Internet service provider, headquartered in Troy, Michigan. Waveform offers a wide range of data services in Southeast Michigan, and operates a 400 mile fiber network. Waveform’s Troy Data Center is a world-class facility that provides colocation for tenants of all sizes. More information is available at http://www.michigan-colocation.com or 248-784-7000.

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Over 8.1 Million Broadband Customers (47%) Do Not Know Their Download Limit And Could Be At Risk Of Exceeding Their Fair Usage Policy

The unlimited broadband debacle is still rumbling on, despite Sky setting a precedent for other providers by launching the first completely unlimited service last year. New research from uSwitch.com shows that over 6.7 million broadband users could still be exceeding limits set on ‘unlimited’ packages. Despite calls for greater clarity and transparency, just three major broadband providers currently advertise the real limits on
their services:

•Over 8.1 million broadband customers (47%) do not know their download limit and could be at risk of exceeding their ‘fair usage policy’ – this is up from 7.5 million last year
•70% of major broadband providers are still prepared to disconnect people that exceed limits – even when these are advertised as ‘unlimited’
•Just 30% of major broadband providers are transparent and advertise the true limits of their packages
•6.7 million (39%) broadband users believe the are on a completely ‘unlimited’ package – with just one provider offering a this, many of these consumers could be in for a shock

Despite widespread criticism of the policy of imposing limits on ‘unlimited’ broadband packages, consumers are still being caught out. New research from uSwitch.com, the independent price comparison and switching service, reveals that almost half (47%) of broadband users don’t know the limit on their service. More worryingly, over a third (39%) believe that their broadband package is unlimited and could be opening themselves up to disconnection if they unknowingly exceed the provider’s limit.

It is over two years since uSwitch.com started campaigning against broadband download limit transparency. During this time, Sky set a precedent for other broadband providers by launching the first completely unlimited service. Other providers have failed to follow suit and offer their customers ‘true’ unlimited downloads. The majority of broadband providers are still using the term unlimited and still baffling broadband users by setting limits on their packages. Just three of the major providers, Sky, TalkTalk and AOL, actually publicise official limits.

The unadvertised limits attached to broadband packages can be restricted by providers through ‘limiting’, which is simply limiting the level of downloads and ‘traffic shaping’. Traffic shaping restricts the speed at which you can download certain types of media and restricts the activity that can be performed. This only demonstrates further confusion to the millions of broadband customers in the UK.

The research also shows absolutely no change in the percentage of consumers who are misled, misinformed or just mystified. However, with greater take up of broadband, these percentages are translating into increasing numbers of consumers. 8.1 million broadband customers (47%) do not know their download limit – up from 7.5 million last year – and 6.8 million broadband users (39%) could be exceeding limits set on ‘unlimited’ packages – up from 6.2 million last year.

The Digital Britain report revealed that 2Mb/s broadband should be accessible to all by 2012 and it is predicted that the amount of broadband users are expected to soar. With video applications and services such as the BBC’s iPlayer, ITV and 4OD catch-up becoming more popular with consumers the unlimited issue is only set to continue. Nearly one in four (23%) people with internet access claim that someone in the household watches TV Online, up from 17% in 2008. A total 65% of UK households have a broadband package, an increase of 7% year from 2008. With the increase in the number of people using online services and the demand for downloads increasing there is a real need for greater transparency regarding download limits.

Unfortunately, broadband users are still completely unaware as to how much their activity adds up to in terms of their overall usage. Even activities such as uploading files can contribute to their ‘acceptable usage’ and could cause users to breach the threshold set by their supplier. This means that broadband customers are in danger of having their services limited, suspended or even terminated by their provider.

The issue is compounded by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA). It currently allows providers to describe services as ‘unlimited’ even if there is a fair usage cap, as long as it is detailed in the small print. If consumers are not vigilant enough they could get a nasty surprise if they inadvertently break the rules and max out their so-called ‘unlimited’ service.

Via EPR Network
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Euphonix Chooses 3CX Phone System & Polycom Phones As Best Of Breed VoIP PBX Solution

Euphonix, a leading manufacturer of large-format digital audio consoles, media controllers, and peripherals, has provided customers worldwide with trusted broadcast, post, live sound, and music production solutions for over 20 years. As a leader in their audio industry, Euphonix employees value high quality, high definition communications. So when it came to replacing their outdated telephone system, the Euphonix IT team turned to 3CX and Polycom, Inc. [Nasdaq: PLCM] for a state-of-the-art VoIP PBX system.

Tasked with the modernization of the Euphonix phone system, Euphonix’s Director of IT, Andor Izsak, found the offerings of traditional PBX vendors to be cost prohibitive and limited, forcing Izsak to find an alternative.

Izsak began researching IP PBX solutions and quickly realized he did not have the time for an open source Linux solution, where support, timely updates and ongoing product development may be an issue. He required a solution that could run on Microsoft Windows and had tight Windows integration

“I came upon 3CX, downloaded the free software package and was very pleasantly surprised by how quickly and easily I was able to s e t up a small home phone network,” recounts Izsak. “I started talking with 3CX and s e t t l e d on the enterprise package with two years of support. Within a week and a half, I had the basic functionality of the old systems replicated at the new site. Not only was the roll out simple and fast, we saved a substantial amount of money going with 3CX.”


About 3CX

3CX is the market leader in Windows VoIP PBX software. Its product, 3CX Phone System for Windows, has earned Windows Server Certification and has received numerous awards, including The Windowsnetworking.com Gold Award, the Windows IT Pro magazine 2008 Editor’s Best Award and a Best Buy Award by Computer Shopper Magazine. 3CX has offices in the UK, USA, Germany, Cyprus, Malta, Australia and Hong Kong. For more information visit www.3cx.com.

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3CX Today Announced That It Has Released 3CX Gateway For Skype

3CX today announced that it has released 3CX Gateway for Skype, which allows VoIP Phone System users to receive and make SKYPE™ Calls company-wide.

3CX Today Announced That It Has Released 3CX Gateway For Skype

3CX Gateway for Skype is software based and will run on a non dedicated Windows System and on the same computer as 3CX Phone System. It is a free add-on for 3CX Phone System users, including those using the free edition. 3CX Gateway for Skype integrates Skype™ calls seamlessly into the phone system, allowing inbound Skype™calls to be forwarded to call queues, ring groups, IVR, Voice applications and more.

“3CX Gateway for Skype allows companies to save significantly by using Skype for outbound calls. More-over, users can redirect calls to Skype™ numbers when out of the office and leverage Skype clients on iPhone and Windows mobile.” Said Nick Galea, 3CX CEO.

“A Skype™ account can also be published on the website so that customers can call the company free of charge. Skype™ calls will be channeled through the company phone system just as any other call and be forwarded to regular call queues. This can be significant competitive advantage for many web based businesses” continued Nick Galea.

Features

  • Completely software based, no need for a separate box
  • Full support for inbound and outbound Skype™ calling
  • Ability to specify a master account, which will transfer incoming
  • Calls to other Skype accounts and so keep the main Skype account free for calls
  • Supports latest versions of Skype™ client
  • Quickly add additional Skype accounts from the 3CX interface
  • Shows credit available for each Skype account
  • Automatic call logging

Obtaining 3CX Gateway for Skype

3CX Gateway for Skype can be downloaded from here. A detailed configuration guide is available here.

Via EPR Network
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66% of Mobile Phone Users Risk High Overseas Charges Just by Switching Their Phone On

uSwitch.com is urging mobile phone users to wise up on overseas charges, after research revealed that over four in ten Brits (43%) have been shocked by an expensive phone bill when they’ve returned from a holiday abroad. And it’s not just the chatterboxes who have to worry – 66% of people risk running up overseas charges just by switching their phone on:

66% of Mobile Phone Users Risk High Overseas Charges Just by Switching Their Phone On

  • Liable for overseas charges: 33% keep their phone switched on most of the time while abroad even though they don’t intend to use it, while 26% switch on occasionally to check messages
  • Wasting money: 8% switch their phone on when they land just to check it’s working– their phone will automatically be liable for overseas charges
  • Caught out: 42% are unaware that they can be charged for someone leaving them a voicemail while they’re abroad – one in ten (10%) don’t know they can be charged for picking up voicemail messages when abroad
  • In the dark: 85% of mobile phone users aren’t sure what they are being charged for calls and texts while abroad despite new EU pricing guidelines coming into effect from 1st July 2009
  • 50% have never asked their provider about a roaming package for cheaper calls abroad and 75% have never used an international SIM card.

Consumers risk running up large mobile phone bills while abroad, because they are in the dark about overseas charges, according to new research from uSwitch.com, the independent price comparison and switching service. Even though 91% of people take their mobile phones with them abroad on holiday, 85% aren’t sure what they are being charged. And, despite best efforts to limit the impact of overseas charges, many are falling into little known, but avoidable, traps. As a result, over four in ten people (43%) have been shocked by an expensive phone bill when they have got home from holiday.

Most consumers are aware that making calls on their mobile while abroad can cost a small fortune so 80% try to keep it to the bare minimum. To limit the impact, over a quarter of people (27%) take their phone for emergency use only, while 18% pick up calls and texts but won’t make any calls themselves. As a result, 46% of people only make one or two calls while away.

They may think they are being careful, but in fact 66% of mobile phone users are unwittingly opening themselves up to higher overseas charges – just by switching their phone on. This is because the minute you switch on abroad and your phone registers onto a local network you will be billed at overseas rates – you will have to pay to receive calls, for someone leaving you a voicemail message and to pick up voicemail messages. You are liable for overseas charges even if you don’t actually make any calls yourself – bad news for the third (33%) of people who keep their phone switched on most of the time, even though they don’t intend to use it.

As a result, cash conscious consumers are getting caught out. Those who turn their phone on sporadically to check messages (26%) are at risk of clocking up unexpected overseas charges even if they switch their mobile straight back off again. More worryingly, people who turn their phone on just to use the camera or alarm clock (6%) or to simply check that it is working after getting off the plane (8%) are also making themselves liable.

The biggest sting in the tale is for those who get voicemail messages while their phone is registered as being overseas. Not only are they charged at overseas rates for the message being left, but they are then charged again at overseas rates for picking the message up.

People who make calls while overseas don’t fare any better. New EU guidelines effective from 1st July 2009 state that the maximum a mobile phone provider can charge for services in Europe is:

  • 37p per minute to make phone calls
  • 16p per minute to receive phone calls
  • 9p to send a standard text message.
However, only 15% of people can correctly identify the maximum that can be charged for making a call while abroad, with 34% underestimating the charges. Moreover, 61% of people believe that they are charged for receiving text messages while abroad when this is actually free.

Steve Weller, communications expert at uSwitch.com, says: “When it comes to taking a mobile phone abroad on holiday, consumers have to ‘know before they go’ if they don’t want to be hit with unexpected charges. As soon as your phone is switched on abroad the damage is done – it is registered to a local network and starts to incur overseas charges, even if you switch it straight back off again. This means that you pay to receive calls, make calls, for people to leave you a message and to pick up that message – all at higher overseas rates.

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Tesco Mobile Has Unveiled A Brand New Credit Crunch-Beating Unlimited Tariff, Allowing People To Talk And Text As Much As They Want

Tesco Mobile has unveiled a brand new credit crunch-beating unlimited tariff, allowing people to talk and text as much as they want without worrying about their monthly phone bills.

Tesco Mobile

The SIM only, pay monthly deal gives people unlimited minutes, texts and browsing for just £30 a month. With everyone watching their wallets, people need not worry about going over their free minutes and getting a large, unexpected bill at the end of the month.

Research from Tesco Mobile showed that in the current financial climate, worry over the cost of monthly phone bills has led to people spending less time on the phone to friends and relatives.

59% of Brits said they would spend more time on their mobiles if they had unlimited minutes and over half of all respondents (52%) claimed they had friends or relatives who cut short phone calls to keep costs down. Nearly half admitted doing this themselves (49%) despite it being voted one of the most annoying breaches of ‘mobile phone etiquette’.

With over 85% of the population now owning a mobile phone, mobile use has developed its own ‘rules’ for behaviour. Asked to name the most unacceptable and annoying mobile phone habits, the majority of people surveyed cited habits such as calling someone and then hanging up so they have to return the call, texting people to ask them to call back and not picking up voicemails to save money as the most irritating.

Lance Batchelor, Chief Executive Officer of Tesco Mobile and Tesco Telecoms said: “Ours is the only pay monthly deal that gives consumers truly unlimited calling and texting. You don’t have to choose if you’re a chatterbox or a texter, you can use your mobile as much as you want without having to worry about the cost.

“We believe that this will change the way people use their mobile phones. The new tariff aims to give people a simple, guaranteed way to have unlimited calls, texts and browsing. It takes away the concern and uncertainty about your monthly bill as it’s fixed at £30, meaning you can talk, text and browse freely, and avoid the annoying habits revealed by our research.”

– Unlimited tariff is subject to a fair use limit of £500
– Research undertaken by YouGov for Tesco Mobile, July 2009

About Tesco Mobile:
Tesco Mobile is a 50-50 joint venture between Tesco and O2. The company sells exclusively Tesco Mobile branded services in Tesco stores, online and through Tesco Direct, across the UK using O2’s technology and network. The service gives Tesco Mobile customers value, simplicity and choice, offering them simple, great value tariffs with rewards such as free credit, free sim cards and Clubcard points. Tesco Mobile has been voted as the number one mobile network for customer satisfaction by Which Magazine (May ’09).

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Global Electronic Technology, Inc. & eProcessing Network, LLC. To Provide Payments Through Mobile Phones And Laptops To Merchants

Global Electronic Technology, Inc. (GET), a leader in payment processing solutions, today announced a strategic alliance with eProcessing Network, LLC. (ePN) a cutting edge payment gateway and software development company. This alliance will offer GET merchants a suite of wireless payment solutions on mobile phones/PDAs, laptops, and the ever-so-popular ePNPlugIn for QuickBooks™ to accept payments within QuickBooks™.

wireless payment solutions on mobile phones/PDAs

“Our continuous focus on innovations for emerging markets often enables GET to partner with companies such as eProcessing Network to access ways to integrate our transaction processing with new systems,” said Steven H. Bryson, Chief Executive Officer of Global Electronic Technology, Inc. (GET). “GET offers a broad range of synergistic merchant products and management solutions for online merchants such as BillPay, Recurring Bill, SMS Bill, and our new turn-key internet store front GETshop.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with a top-notch company, like Global Electronic Technology, Inc. (GET),” says Steve Sotis, President of eProcessing Network.  “Combining ePN’s secure and reliable PCI-compliant payment gateway solutions, which includes PABP-compliant ePNMobile, ePNJPOS, and ePNPlugIn for QuickBooks, with GET’s end-to-end processing for their sales channels opens up a wide variety of merchant opportunities.”

About eProcessing Network, LLC. (ePN)

eProcessing Network, LLC is a software development company specializing in secure, real-time transaction processing services and support. The eProcessing Network Payment Gateway processes merchant transactions using each merchant’s credit card, ACH/check and/or shipping account.  Headquartered in Houston, Texas, eProcessing Network is certified to process a comprehensive suite of electronic payment transactions through many processing platforms, including First Data, Global Payments, Paymentech, TSYS, Elavon and CrossCheck. Its integrated solutions are also certified through MagTek, AT&T, FedEx and the U.S. Postal System. eProcessing Network is a registered Visa USA Third Party Service Provider and is compliant with the PCI Data Security Standard.

About Global Electronic Technology, Inc. (GET)

Global Electronic Technology, Inc. (GET) is a leading technology provider of end-to-end payment processing solutions, including virtual terminal, payment gateway, GETShop, on-line ACH, and loyalty and gift card programs. Founded in 2000 by Steven H. Bryson and currently privately owned, GET has grown to epitomize the word “global”, by offering state-of–the-art payment processing product and services to diversified industries, extending from retail to internet-based transactions in the worldwide payment industry.

For more information, please contact Mia Hyun V.P. Marketing at Global Electronic Technology, Inc. +1(888) 775-1500 or visit us at www.gettrx.com.

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Cisco Launches Contest For Consumers To Share Their Home Networking Experiences

Cisco has launched a new writing contest called ‘Lifestyles of the Tech Frustrated’, which will run until August 16, 2009, which asks customers of home networking products to submit a 500 word story of their experiences in setting up and managing a home network.

networkmagic

Cisco is asking users to share their networking nightmare stories and how they solved their problems using Network Magic software or other networking solutions. The top 10 entries as deemed by a panel of judges will win a Flip Mino HD Camcorder valued at $229.99*.

Cisco is inviting entries to tell their stories which depict the challenges and advantages of home networking. Cisco wants to hear about what customers are using home networking for and what they accomplish in their lives through technology.

To enter the contest, participants can log on to the Lifestyles of the Tech Frustrated home page and fill out the registration form. The contest is open from July 2 to August 16, 2009 to all legal residents of the United States and the District of Columbia who are at least 18 years of age.

Cisco Network Magic is a home and home office network management software solution which provides software tools to help users set up a home network without the associated hassles of the task. The software programme helps enable users to connect up their devices such as routers, PCs, printers, media hubs, media adapters and internet cameras. Users can also control access to the internet and track online activity to ensure no users are abusing their privileges.

Network Magic also protects networks with enhanced WPA security capabilities and status alerts to block intruders and warn of any attempts from unauthorised sources. Network Magic can also help to repair network and Internet connections to keep everything running smoothly and optimize productivity.

*MSRP at time of going to press. Actual prices may vary.

About Cisco Systems:

Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) is the worldwide leader in networking that transforms how people connect, communicate and collaborate. Cisco’s vision for the consumer is to enable people to live a connected life that is more personal, more social, and more visual. More information about Cisco and its line of consumer products can be found at www.linksysbycisco.com and www.cisco.com/consumer.

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