The fax is dead. Long live email. That's the message being trumpeted by Tobit, Hewlett Packard (HP) and Dialogic, whose free promotional email-to-fax service is designed to show businesses that the time has come to consign their fax machines to the scrap heap. By signing up for the service, anyone with an Internet-enabled email system can send a fax for free to any UK fax machine.
According to the triumvirate, UK businesses send over 8,000 million faxes each year, but only 10 per cent are sent directly from the PC. "The network fax market is set to explode over the next five years reversing the domination of slow and expensive fax machines. We can demonstrate that the solution now exists to handle both PC and paper-based documents," said Phil Hall, UK product manager of network scanners at Hewlett Packard.
The project, called Mail2Fax, gives every fax machine an email address. Users send an email to the machine's address in the the format [email protected] Tobit's fax software, FaxWare, converts this message and transmits it using Dialogic's intelligent fax boards. The service isn't limited to text-only messages, but allows faxes to be sent from any Windows application or for paper-based documents from any HP scanner just as if the system was on your own network. Once the fax has been sent, the sender receives a return email message confirming delivery.
For details on using the service send a blank email to ([email protected]).
The service is available now and will operate during NetWorks 97, from 24-26 June, with an initial limit of 50,000 fax transmissions. (www.faxware.uk.tobit.com).
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