Technology Advisor Blog

Thinking about a New Phone System in 2017?

Posted by Ann Westerheim on 1/25/17 8:38 AM

Old Phone System.jpgIt's a New Year - Are you tired of your old phones?

If you haven't checked out phone technology recently, you'll be amazed with what's available!  The lines between computer technology and phone technology have blurred.  Instead of paying for multiple phone lines, you can run all your phones over your Internet connection (Voice over IP or "VoIP"), providing a lot more functionality at less cost.  You also don't need a lot of complicated phone network equipment on site - just handsets connected over your regular office Internet connection.

Old PBX.jpgDoes this look familiar?  This is an old PBX system and if you see a lot of wires like this in your network closet, its time for a change.   A PBX is a "Private Branch Exchange" which is the technology that enables incoming calls to be switched between all your handsets and extensions.  Years ago, your office would have multiple phone lines coming into the PBX, and then multiple phone lines going out to each handset in your office... a lot of wiring!  

With VoIP, you may still have a PBX on site, but it will look more like a modern switch or router with network cables coming out of it.  You also have the option for added flexibility now to have your PBX "in the cloud".  There's a lot of hype about the cloud, but a PBX in the cloud is now mainstream, and a great cost-effective option for Small and Medium Businesses to have a low maintenance solution that also enables connecting remote users.

Custom Schedules: Configure time-based call routing for open/closed business hours, holidays, and special events.

Visual Dial Plan Editor:  Map out call flows visually and make changes on the fly using the drag-and-drop interface. Easily configure elements like wait times, auto attendants, voicemail boxes, sound clips, and schedules.

Detailed Call Analytics: Create opportunities for more efficient use of resources, better training, and proper scheduling by using  time-of-day reports, geography-based heat maps, and downloadable call detail logs. 

Mobile Operation:  Use the mobile app to use your cell phone as an extension of your office handset.  You can take your office wherever you go.  Need to take office phone calls on a snow day?  No problem.  

Remote Office:  Remote workers can plug in a handset anywhere with an Internet Connection.  It's easy to connect multiple office locations even if there's just one user.

We've put together a training video on VoIP and some of the features in the system we recommend:

 Want to schedule a demo?  Call us at 978-692-4200 or send us an email.

Tags: VoiP,, Phone System

How can I send a Text Message from a Computer?

Posted by Ann Westerheim on 1/4/17 4:28 PM

eMail to Text Outlook.jpgStudies show that text messages get read in minutes, as compared to email messages which may get buried, stuck in spam filters, or just missed.  It's easy to send text messages from your computer.   You'll need the recipients phone number and cell phone carrier (Verizon, AT&T, etc).  Also, make sure you have permission - fees may apply, and your text could also be perceived as spam if its unwanted.

Type the recipients phone number with the sms gateway (vtext.com for Verizon): PhoneNumber@vtext.com.  The gateways for the major carriers are:

T-Mobile: phonenumber@tmomail.net

Sprint: phonenumber@messaging.sprintpcs.com

Nextel: phonenumber@messaging.nextel.com

AT&T: phonenumber@txt.att.net

 

 

Type your message, and then you're ready to send.  Tip:  If you have a lengthy email signature, don't use it for sending the text.    Delete it or send with no "signature".

Here is what the message will look like on the recipients phone:

Text Message on Phone - Message.jpg

 

If you want to send out group texts, or start using text messages as promotions in your business, then we recommend using a platform designed for this, but if you just need to send an occasional text from your computer, then the email method is simple and quick!

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