Toshiba, Aastra Launch New Unified Communications Products - InformationWeek
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1/20/2010
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Jake Widman
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Toshiba, Aastra Launch New Unified Communications Products

Enterprise communications vendor Aastra has introduced a new SMB-scale IP PBX hardware platform, while Toshiba's Telecommunications Division has announced a software package that supports its Strata CIX IP unified communications systems.

Enterprise communications vendor Aastra has introduced a new SMB-scale IP PBX hardware platform, while Toshiba's Telecommunications Division has announced a software package that supports its Strata CIX IP unified communications systems.Aastra's new box is called the MX-One Compact and is built on the company's established MX-One IP telephony platform. The MX-One enables small and midsize businesses to provide integrated mobile and fixed telephone service, by which employees using mobile phones can access the same features their desk phones provide. It also enables mobile employees to be reached at the same number as their desk phone and lets them access all their messages -- voicemail, e-mail, and fax -- from one inbox.

"What we have done is concentrate the features and benefits of the comprehensive and well-established MX-ONE call control manager to address the specific requirements of SMBs. Now, small and medium businesses can receive the benefits of a full-featured and scalable enterprise grade solution for deployments up to 300 extensions in a cost effective way," said Aastra senior vice president Tim Whittington, Sr.

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Meanwhile, Toshiba has announced Strata Call Manager, which provides a graphical front end to the company's Strata CIX IP telephone systems. The interface is based on the Microsoft Fluent interface familiar from the Office 2007 suite and provides a Ribbon that holds all the common features and functions in multiple tabs, which in turn contain programmable buttons.

The tabs and buttons let users manage their phone system from their PCs rather than from their phones, for example by dragging and dropping incoming calls right into voicemail or onto another extension. It will also dial the phone from within a contact manager such as Outlook. Strata Call Manager integrates with CRM programs such as Act!, Tigerpaw, and Salesforce.com to provide "screen pops" to call recipients with information about the caller.

According to Shahin Hatamian, vice president of product management for Toshiba America Information Systems, "Toshibas New Strata Call Manager gives enterprise and SMB users a highly effective unified communications solution that delivers the capabilities they want in a friendly graphical user interface."

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