Wednesday, October 26, 2011

What Does “The Cloud” Mean to You and Your Communications Systems?

The decision between on-premise and off-premise infrastructure is becoming more relevant and important with each major company's commitment to providing Software as a Service (SaaS). There's still plenty of speculation on the actual transition and immersion, but the prospect for cost-effective production attracts small businesses of all kinds.

The phrase 'cloud computing' has been thrown around a lot and sometimes we forget the basic foundation - the internet. Typically, cloud computing is summarized as a model of IT services based on and provided over the internet with on-demand access to network materials while experiencing little to no service provider interaction. The software and data are stored on servers and the software is delivered through online web services or software (i.e. browser).

With a lot of confusion regarding a transition to the "cloud," are we using the term too loosely to define a more precise shift in IT services?

In a post over at, Jonathan Eunice explains how many people are throwing the vague "what comes next in IT" label on cloud computing, emphasizing "overhyped" and "overused." He does not agree with the general viewpoint, and later goes on to say this:

"Cloud is the realization that what comes next in IT isn't a specific technology, but the infusion of flexibility, variability, and elasticity into what was previously a static, front-loaded, inflexible world."

While some may question the definition, others still debate over the cloud's security standing and performance factors. Over at, two experts make excellent points for and against the readiness of cloud computing. While one stresses the need for "significant answers to the significant questions," the other insists that the cloud is ready for specific tasks and edging closer to the ultimate 'platform' which businesses await.

Of course, for most enterprise users, the most important aspect of cloud computing that needs to be established is security. stresses that cloud service outages and criminals operating in the cloud threaten the overall participation in the model. The good news - there is plenty of research, partnerships, and products being developed to further enhance and advance the cloud arena. Click on the Computerworld link or check out how puts the enterprise cloud to the test.

If there ever was a "hyped" IT model, cloud computing takes the cake. Will we continue to see slow enhancements, a faster acceptance, or a slippery slope of denial when it comes to cloud computing capabilities and adaptation?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Panasonic Communications Assistant 3.0 Empowers Businesses To Stay In Touch While On The Go

Panasonic, a leader in business telephone systems, announced today that it has enhanced its state-of-the-art Communications Assistant (CA) productivity software suite. CA is a PC-based software application suite that allows the business user to manage their telephony needs from a desktop or laptop, with different levels of functionality available to suit a variety of business situations:

  • CA Basic Express – Users can visually manage all of their individual communication needs from a PC
  • CA Pro – Builds on CA Basic Express by enabling voice mail control from anywhere in the world and adds presence and chat/IM functionality to assess coworker availability at a glance
  • CA Supervisor – Allows supervisors to visually manage all of their employees’ call activities
  • VM Assistant – This module allows users to check voicemail messages from a PC, forward them via email as .wav attachments, and perform many other voicemail management functions (requires optional KX-TVA voice messaging solution)
  • CA Operator Console –Simultaneously manages and redirects multiple calls with such features as drag-and-drop call transfer—ideal for the busy receptionist, customer service desk or support desk
“More and more businesses have been moving away from the traditional static desktop workplace in favor of a more mobile one,” said Bill Savino, marketing manager for business telephone systems at Panasonic System Networks Company of America. “In this new dynamic work environment, it’s essential for people to be able to easily manage their communications anytime, anywhere, which includes from their computers. Panasonic’s Communication Assistant is designed to offer businesses another way to stay in touch with and manage interactions with colleagues, customers, and suppliers—wherever they may be.”

CA 3.0 features point-and-click call control; instant messaging (chat); visual voice messaging; Microsoft® Outlook® integration; door telephone and sensor control; IP camera integration and control; call history, calls made/missed, and supervisor group call monitoring and management. The system also supports two types of deployments: computer telephony integration (CTI) without a server for small-to-medium-sized businesses and CTI server-based systems that can support up to four separate locations. Some of the new features available with version 3.0 include “drag and drop” on-screen icons so callers can visually manage teleconference locations; remote location call monitoring; busy signal override, and detailed status reporting.

Communications Assistant productivity software supports the Panasonic KX-NCP and KX-TDE business telephone systems. For more information on Panasonic Communications Assistant and Panasonic business telephone systems, please visit

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Panasonic: Blurring Boundaries and Shattering Silos in Business Telephony

It may be true that as Gertrude Stein famously said, "A rose is a rose is a rose." But where businesses and their communications needs are concerned, it’s definitely no longer true (if it ever was) that a phone is a phone is a phone. For many if not most business users, "the phone" has evolved and continues to evolve as its role in effective business communications expands. Panasonic brings a unique combination of strengths to this dynamic marketplace, offering solutions that blend legacy and modern technologies to offer basic and enhanced functionality.

Telephony is changing, from "plain ol’ telephone service" (or "POTS") to voice and unified communications (UC) often running atop Internet Protocol (IP) network infrastructures. But many businesses still have significant capital and experience invested in legacy telephone systems, and are still deriving business benefits from those investments.

Meanwhile, the views of those buying and using business telephony systems are also in flux. That audience now includes growing numbers of younger, "IP-aware" people who have never worked in organizations with separate voice and data networks or management. But the ultimate audience for telephony services still includes those whose needs or desires for advanced or enhanced services is minimal or non-existent, at least for now.

Further, delivering basic dial tone has given way to a more systematic, strategic approach to telephony, focused on connecting workers to each other, to customers and to needed resources wherever they may be. But delivering basic dial tone is still business-critical and especially challenging in some geographies or where mobility support is also needed.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

New DECT Multi-Cell Wireless Telephone Handsets for Business Telecommunications

Panasonic, a leader in business telephone systems, today introduced two new Multi-Cell DECT 6.0 wireless telephone handsets that put advanced communications technology at users’ fingertips -- even away from the desk or workstation.

Ideal for high-end residential or business use, the KX-WT120 series cordless telephones connect with a Panasonic business phone system and are compatible with all of Panasonic’s current PBX models (TDA50G, TDE and NCP series). Depending on the Panasonic system chosen, up to 128 handsets can be supported. The Multi-Cell DECT system solves range-related issues in larger buildings by using multiple cell antennas, which automatically and seamlessly hand off calls from one station to the next as users move throughout the warehouse, plant, showroom or other facility. A large, clear display and graphical icon menu provide a quick overview of all system features so users always have the power of their desk telephones right at their fingertips.

“Today’s employees are more mobile than ever, and their communications demands have never been higher,” said Bill Savino, marketing manager for business telephone systems at Panasonic System Networks Company of America. “Our goal is to empower this highly dynamic, on-the-go workforce with the ability to effectively communicate from wherever they may be. Panasonic continues to push the envelope by developing advanced communications systems that are designed to meet the ever-changing demands of today’s fast-paced business environment.”

The new Multi-Cell DECT cordless telephone models offer a variety of useful features for business or high-end residential use:

  • Background noise-reduction technology
  • Backlit display and illuminated keypad for easy reading in all lighting conditions
  • Easy menu navigation
  • Programmable keys
  • Personal phonebook with up to 100 entries
  • Built-in speakerphone
  • Uses standard rechargeable AAA battery
The KX-WT125 and KX-WT126 models join the existing KX-TD7600 series DECT phones which include compact, standard and ruggedized models, expanding the choice of handsets and features available to business phone system users.

For more information on Panasonic business telephone systems, please visit