Looking for Free Voice Services? - InformationWeek
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6/28/2010
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Looking for Free Voice Services?

Free has become a watchword among consumers when it comes to Internet services. Could that term soon be used for business telephony systems? InVox, a four year old cloud based telephony services vendor, thinks so.

Free has become a watchword among consumers when it comes to Internet services. Could that term soon be used for business telephony systems? InVox, a four year old cloud based telephony services vendor, thinks so.The company announced PBXPlus, a cloud telephone service designed for small and medium businesses. The service features a free phone number, unlimited extensions, unlimited inbound calls. In addition, the service supports call forwarding, voicemail, transcription, and speech recognition.

However, InBox's goal is to do more than simply supply free voice services to SMBs. The company anticipates that customers will eventually need addition integration services. It has developed more than 50 voice applications that can be tied to a variety of applications, including Salesforce, Intuit Quickbase, Skype, Google Voice, Authorize.net, and Google Calendar. Fees for those service vary, depending on which functions customers need and how many users work with the service.

The privately held, privately financed company, which has about 50 employees, claims to have more than 4,000 customers worldwide. Initially, the vendor started out delivering Interactive Voice Response, Customer Relationship Management, call center and help desk functions to businesses. Now, it is trying to offer more generic services.

Telephony services have been slow to move to the cloud for a variety of reasons. The underlying infrastructure has been immature. Service providers have been unable to deliver the needed quality and reliability associated with voice services. That has been slowly been changing and more of these services have been popping up. InVox has hit upon a market in an early stage of development and one with potential. However, the company is relatively small player and will be competing against much larger, better established suppliers, such as traditional telcos and cable companies.

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