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Next-generation VoIP: Connecting up communications silos with the cloud


Within the extremely aggressive telecoms market, 8×8 is hoping that its new X Sequence VoIP service will give it an edge. The platform combines name, collaboration, conferencing and get in touch with middle options. ZDNet talked to the corporate’s UK MD, Kevin Scott-Cowell.

ZDNet: I imagine you started life as a chip firm?

Scott-Cowel: We’ve got been round for the reason that 1980s. Initially [as Integrated Information Technology] we had been a chip designer. Then we did a improbable strategic shimmy within the ’90s downturn.

We had VoIP [Voice over IP] know-how and we rapidly determined to go and construct VoIP merchandise and VoIP providers. At first, we had been largely focusing on customers however that proved to be a little bit of a ache so then we moved to B2B and now we have grown from there. Then round 2000/2004 we began constructing VoIP cloud-based providers. We went for a pure cloud play and have constructed ever since.

Within the UK, we went an analogous path to our US arm. In 2004, Voicenet Solutions began life as a pure-play, voice-over-IP, business-to-business answer. I joined that firm in 2010.

SEE: IT pro’s guide to the evolution and impact of 5G technology (free PDF)

We met 8×8 in 2012 after they acquired some contact centre know-how and we needed to re-sell it. Abruptly I discovered myself speaking quite a bit to 8×8 and we realised we had been each fairly comparable in internet hosting pure-play VoIP.

So in December 2013, Voicenet was acquired by 8×8 and we turned the primary non-US firm to have VoIP with international attain. We had been about 50 individuals and we thought of ourselves the primary amongst equals at hosted voice.

Are you publicly held or personal?

8×8 Inc is on the New York Inventory Trade. We was NASDAQ-listed, however moved to the New York Inventory Trade in January.

We have been publicly listed right through, even on the level of transition from a chip-maker to VoIP.

So, we had a pleasant nucleus after we turned established with 50 individuals, all of whom had expertise working large platforms. Now now we have round 240 individuals within the UK, however a whole lot of the expansion has been from the acquisition of DXI [a cloud-based comms provider] in 2015.

Who do you see because the competitors?

Many of the different individuals are re-selling different individuals’s options. A lot of them will usually say they’re supplying their very own options however while you look carefully they produce other individuals’s know-how bolted on.

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Scott-Cowell: Good buyer expertise will drive success


Picture: 8×8

And our know-how is evolving. We’ve got over 50 patents that are key for us, because it permits us to drive the event of merchandise.

We’ve got 15 knowledge centres and are rising globally. We’ve got all of the know-how round geo-routing and we have got a whole lot of the patents round this kind of stuff.

We’ve got the know-how that displays the standard of the calls by the endpoints. There are probes on the system that search for the most effective routing of the calls.

We have clever algorithms that preserve that high quality excessive. The Tolly Report rated us as number one in call quality. We take all that severely — we do not simply plug it in and hope that it really works. We’re doing pro-active testing to handle the community.

What do you see as being your key clincher for profitable a significant contract?

There are a whole lot of smaller gamers who can present good providers regionally however when you get exterior the UK, they run out of choices as a result of they have not received the community, they have not received the community, they have not received the companions.

Inform me concerning the X Sequence.

Our considering is that now we have gone by the primary wave of Enterprise communications, which is on-prem stuff — the contact centre, PBX, and perhaps video conferencing.

After which in round 2000 and no matter, alongside comes cloud and TCOs are higher and suppleness might be a bit higher. What we’re seeing now’s that you’ve numerous stuff within the cloud however really you have received disparate methods — silos. And inside these silos, you have received a contact centre however let’s take chat for example.

So, you go into companies now and so they’ve received a contact centre, a cloud answer from one vendor, it is received a PBX from one other, it is received video conferencing from one other, chat from one other. You’ve got received 4 streams that do not essentially combine with each other and then you definitely get chat in all places.

Every totally different group within the enterprise is utilizing a special chat engine and so you have received silos. However you have additionally received silos inside silos. You’ve got received a complete bunch of information but it surely’s a loopy mess. It supplies operate and doubtless some productiveness, however by way of customer support and worker expertise it is a nightmare.

SEE: How we learned to talk to computers, and how they learned to answer back (cover story PDF)

A clients rings in and says, “Did you get my electronic mail?” and the individual on the top of the road has no thought what the client is speaking about. There isn’t any approach to search for the client communication. The shopper waits, the worker has no manner of coping with it and so the client begins on the lookout for a special provider.

We all know the paradigm: Good buyer expertise will drive success and the alternative will result in failure.

Everyone knows we have to transfer to a special paradigm and that is the place X Sequence is available in as a result of we have got the know-how.

The underside line is providing clients a route from silos to a single platform. Single knowledge throughout all of the totally different platforms is, when it comes right down to it, what we’re aiming for. X Sequence is the best way to get there.

There’s a knowledge lake and, we imagine, AI is the best way to have the ability to use it and, extra importantly, for us to assist our clients get essentially the most out of it.

We will likely be going forward with the primary X Sequence merchandise round June or July.

What is the hyperlink that you simply suppose is lacking?

The info. You want entry to the information. If you have not received the information in your cloud then you may’t transfer ahead.

You should use your system now and work the software program, however the knowledge is someplace else. So, when the third social gathering that the client is integrating with is offered to an organization that competes with you, all of a sudden the system that you’ve got been counting on is not there anymore.

The truth that we may have all the information, all the software program, all of the analytics in a single place means that we have got this enormous quantity of information that makes the entire thing a real buyer expertise.

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