Microsoft will move strongly into the computer telephony integration (CTI) arena next month with offerings aimed at using Windows NT to cut costs for large and medium sized companies.
Richard Peers, business development manager at Microsoft UK, said an announcement to be made in early June will confirm its move into a lucrative market for the company.
Large companies have made a large profit from large companies who have had to pay big prices for kit to accomplish CTI, he said. ?You?d get a PBX from one and voicemail from another and you?d have to bolt them together and they were all very proprietary from the ground up,? he said.
He added: ?The driver for this is customer service and that has driven the demand for call centres like First Direct. People are now looking at integrating telephony with call centres. There?s a drive to reduce costs and complexity from traditionally massively expensive systems and it has been complex in the past.?
The announcement is based around TAPI 2.1, said Peers. ?This is a big step forward because it?s using full client/server technology - the next step is to integrate this with PSTNs (public switched telephone networks)," he said.
He said: ?We will have a fundamental underpinning technology which will allow people to write applications in Visual Basic or Java on top of it.?
Mitel, he said, had helped drive the technology. ?You can now buy a telephony server with NT, Exchange and the whole of Back Office with everything integrated.?
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