Building Telephone Features Into Applications

Thumbnail image for telephone-rotary.jpgToday Ring Central will announce a platform that combines the phone and the Internet. For example, a major carrier will deliver a complete multi-extension business phone service, all online, with instant activation, or an online printing service that enables a business owner to activate a complete business phone system instantly while designing business cards.
Ifbyphone, has launched a new Smart Conference Calling solution that Web developers can use to add “smart” conference-calling capabilities to the websites they build for businesses. Here’s more on this from their press release “Smart Conference Calling allows developers to integrate an instant conference-calling capability into the websites they build for SMBs,” said Ifbyphone founder and CEO Irv Shapiro. “We think it will be especially useful for franchises, associations and other membership organizations that need to initiate conference calls spontaneously for quick consultations.”
“Our Smart Conference Calling is unique since Ifbyphone calls the designated participants, instead of waiting for them having to dial in,” added Shapiro. “And we give users a sophisticated set of web based conference-call controls. The conference call originator / moderator can add or drop participants, see which participants are present, mute and unmute individual participants and schedule conferences for any time in the future.“

What does this mean for you?

In the coming months expect to see more telephony service providers enabling programmers and web developers to integrate telephone features in applications and web sites. Of course Microsoft and Cisco already have partners (such as M5 Networks) that can program various telephone features, but as more companies such as Ring Central and ifbyphone create opportunities for developers, more small businesses will have integrated telephony features built into their web sites and software.
Imagine wanting to implement a weekly conference call with your customers or members of your association? They could input their telephone numbers into the the appropriate location on your web site and your conference calling service will call them at the appropriate time.
Imagine being able to order a new set of 1800 numbers and telephone extensions from your favorite online computer retailer?
Sure instant messaging, email and blogs are all the rage – but the humble and dependable telephone is going to be in increased use for some time into the next several years.