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CEBIT 2006

I am working at CEBIT for the next 3 days out of the Sydney Convention Centre. Started the day with breakfast in a nice little cafe just near the centre and are now setting up our stand at the show. This year we have joined the Tasmanian Govt Department of Economic Development stand so we have some good company. Viewbuild and the etechgroup as well as DED are sharing the stand with us. The exhibition seems to take up about 5 of the halls but I will need to have a look around shortly. Immediately it was obvious VOIP has many stands but I will work out the other main trends over the 3 days.

We have on show our suite of ISW and IBM software including IVR-Xpress Visual Builder as a core product to display. Ian has brought up an IBM xSeries server running Asterisk Virtual PABX that is tunneling thru the net to another Asterisk server in Hobart. We will be able to show people how it can then make long distance calls to Hobart at the cost of local calls. We also have a number of soft phones installed as a demo of what could be done in a call centre environment.

We have our ISW Solutions That Work software catalogue on the stand as well so we will be able to present on our range of products as required.

I will go have a look around and see what else I can find. Will be interesting to see how much IBM and Microsoft software is on display and from which partners. 


SkypeIn now available in Australia

After many months of waiting SkypeIn is now available in Australia. At a cost of approx $AUD50 (€30)  per year or $AUD16 (€10) for a 3 month trial you can now get you very own Australian phone number that will connect thru to your Skype softphone.

I am a big user of Skype. Between our offices in Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart, (and I guess my home office), skype is always my first means of calling someone. If I can't get them then I resort back to a normal call. This has resulted in about 80-90% of my intercompany phone calls becoming Skype calls. 3-4 others in the business are also heavy users of Skype and as a result we have noticed about a 50% drop in our monthly phone bill which is a whole lot of beer money!! I also use it extensively for those clients that are also on Skype. The awareness capability of knowing if they are available for a call is a great feature. The fact that you can see them online also seems to help develop a closer working relationship.

This ability to have a SkypeIn number means that our clients can also have a local number to call me on. I will need to test it out and see what sort of quality the calls are but if it works well then I may as well have a local number in each State rather than clients calling a number that is diverted to my mobile when I am out of the office. For that matter I probably should consider a number in the UK for all of our IVR-Xpress Visual Builder clients to call me on rather than international calls. Again I will need to test the quality of audio to make sure it is up to scratch.