A recent global study sponsored by Siemens (News - Alert) Enterprise Communications revealed (among a number of findings) that SMBs are increasingly using a variety of communications technologies (i.e., phone, instant messaging, and video conferencing) and that more than 50% of employees consider themselves to be mobile workers. Siemens has designed the HiPath OpenOffice platforms as complete systems with standard features and functionality that address communications deficiencies experienced by smaller businesses. The newest model, HiPath OpenOffice EE (Entry Edition), is the second member of the OpenOffice family, joining OpenOffice ME (Medium Edition), which was introduced in the second half of 2007. HiPath OpenOffice has a built-in controller for integrated voice over wireless LAN connectivity and supports one-number service and cell phone integration. HiPath OpenOffice EE also includes MyPortal Entry, a standard desktop productivity application (no license required to operate), which was developed in an open development environment created by Yahoo!. HiPath OpenOffice Entry Edition became available on November 28, 2008 and is currently sold in the EMEA and CALA regions and is being introduced in North America. Learn more about IP PBXs and associated applications at www.telecomtactics.com or www.t3igroup.com/databases.
Siemens Enterprise Communications targets small businesses with the HiPath OpenOffice Entry Edition (EE), a new all-in-one IP-based communications system that supports up to 30 users and includes some productivity-enhancing functionality without the high cost. Siemens designed HiPath OpenOffice EE as a complete system to address communications deficiencies in smaller businesses, referencing research that indicates employees waste an average of 3.6 hours a week because they cannot collaborate easily with co-workers. The new system addresses collaboration by including an intuitive graphical user interface for desktop PC call control and access to call journals, address books, voicemail and other telephony functions. HiPath OpenOffice also includes support fordual-mode (Cellular/WiFi) operation and one-number dialing, providing important functionality for the mobile workforce.
The HiPath OpenOffice EE IP-based appliance comes in two versions: an ISDN version with up to eight ISDN B (News - Alert)-channels, or an analog version with up to six FXO trunk interfaces. Both versions support, four SIP channels, 30 SIP or H.323 devices, two or four analog extension ports, 24 voicemail boxes and have a 4-port LAN switch. Additional functionality includes VPN and encryption, as well as an integrated router, gateway, switch and firewall, all of which are configured with a Web-based management application. Customers can choose from a range of telephones and devices, including the Siemens OpenStage family of telephones, Siemens optiPoint WL2 professional wireless handset and Siemens OptiClient 130 softphone, as well as analog phones.
Notable is MyPortal Entry Edition, a desktop application included as a standard capability (no license required to operate). Users can manage voice communications using their PC, including accessing a call journal and directories (for look-ups and point-and-click dialing), managing voicemail, diverting calls based on status, viewing screen pops of a caller’s name and number, as well as utilizing a team function for sending pre-defined text messages to colleagues. The MyPortal Entry Edition application runs on the Yahoo! (News - Alert)Widget Engine, an open development environment created by Yahoo! where Web developers and programmers can develop software applications called widgets. Siemens describes these widgets as tailored applications that are docked on the side of a Windows or Apple (News - Alert) desktop PC. Siemens supports this Web development by making available its own community website called OpenScape Center, as well as a Software Development Kit (SDK) which lets developers use open standards like HTTP and XML to customize applications for specific vertical markets. Thus, resellers can add value when selling the HiPath OpenOffice EE system, by offering tailor-made applications.
HiPath OpenOffice EE also incorporates Fixed Mobile “Convenience” with several convenient mobility features built-in, including one-number service (a single phone number for the desk phone and mobile phone) and Mobile Entry cell phone integration. Like the higher capacity Medium Edition (ME) version, HiPath OpenOffice EE has a built-in controller for an integrated Wireless LAN Solution 802.11 b/g, so that customers simply add Access Points (up to 10 APs) to run converged voice and data applications over a wireless network. Dual-Mode functionality automatically switches between the internal WiFi network and the cellular network as the user moves from one network to the other (requires a Nokia (News - Alert) E series handset; other dual mode phones are in testing). Siemens notes that there is no handover between WLAN and cellular networks during an active call, however (Siemens designed this integrated functionality for the price-sensitive small business market).
HiPath OpenOffice Entry Edition became available on November 28, 2008 and is currently sold in the EMEA and CALA regions and is being introduced in North America. Basic system pricing starts at EUR 980 which includes a 10-user base license and the HiPath OpenOffice EE unit.
Sandra M. Gustavsen, senior analyst for T3i Group, contributes her TelecomTactics column to TMCnet. To read more of Sandra’s articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Erik Linask