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Contact centre reinvented in cloud

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The Interactive Intelligence Group has announced its PureCloud Engage customer engagement cloud service which is designed to offer contact centres an accelerated business impact with more consistent outcomes.

Interactive Intelligence Group has launched a new customer engagement cloud service in South Africa.

The PureCloud Engage architecture, along with its advanced functionality, fast deployment, and simple month-to-month subscription, offers contact centres accelerated business impact, more consistent outcomes, and the most innovative customer and agent experience.

“While cloud solutions have matured quickly, many organisations are still concerned about security,” said World Wide Worx managing director Arthur Goldstuck at the launch. “It’s important to understand that cloud architectures differ quite a bit, and these differences have important security implications. As organisations evaluate their cloud options, they should assess a vendor’s security certifications, access management controls, encryption, and intrusion testing protocols.

“With careful assessment, organisations will find that in many instances modern cloud solutions are more secure than on-premises solutions. Combined with month-to-month subscription terms, these cloud solutions can give organisations an incredibly flexible, low-risk, high-value option.”

PureCloud Engage was built from the inside out with stringent security requirements in mind. It also addresses contact centre pain points such as high costs, lack of scalability, and difficulty managing geographically dispersed remote sites, according to Interactive Intelligence Managing Director, Africa Region Andre le Roux.

“Local contact centres increasingly need to roll out faster, scale up or down for campaigns without unnecessary expense, and focus their resources and budget more on staff and customer experience rather than infrastructure,” said Le Roux. “The unique PureCloud Engage architecture reduces start-up time to a matter of days, simplifies the management of workpools in different locations, and offers maximum reliability and scalability within a pay-as-you-go monthly subscription model.”

With customer expectations changing dramatically, South African contact centres are challenged to deliver always-on access across multiple channels, as well as ensuring that agents are empowered to assure true first call resolution. Interactive Intelligence designed PureCloud Engage to also address these issues, said Le Roux.

“PureCloud Engage continuously delivers the most innovative and comprehensive omnichannel features, which reduces the cost and complexity of upgrades, eliminates downtime for maintenance, and improves both the agent and customer experience,” he said. “Its advanced analytics also take full advantage of the virtually limitless data storage capacity of the cloud so agents have immediate access to all relevant customer information. This empowers them to give personal and even proactive service, which significantly improves the customer experience.”

PureCloud Engage is designed as a set of stateless, independently load-balanced micro-services running atop the scalable Amazon Web Services Cloud. This architecture was designed to achieve new levels of reliability, security and scalability. It also gives businesses immediate and continuous delivery of the most innovative applications.

PureCloud Engage features the industry’s most comprehensive feature-set, including omni-channel routing, speech-enabled interactive voice response (IVR), call recording, quality management and reporting, outbound and predictive dialing, CRM integrations, and graphical scripting. It also includes business communications and collaboration features, such as IP PBX capabilities, video conferencing, corporate directory, chat, desktop sharing, and content management.

PureCloud Engage is offered directly through the Interactive Intelligence sales force as well as through the company’s channel comprised of approximately 400 partners worldwide.

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CES: So long, and thanks for all the beer!

Last week, the Las Vegas expo showed off its fun side with state-of-the-art technologies for enjoying beer, writes BRYAN TURNER

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From craft beer-making machines to robots that pour beer, CES had more beer than usual in Las Vegas last week. And even free beer if you found the right stand. Stampede’s saloon-style booth offered beer to visitors who tried out its latest drones, virtual reality, and other gaming products. No beer tech, though.

Here are some of the beer technologies that stood out:

LG HomeBrew – Craft beer made at home

LG’s HomeBrew craft beer-making machine,  debuted at CES 2019, brings the brewing process home thanks to single-use capsules,  a self-cleaning feature, and an algorithm optimised for fermentation. 

Like a Nespresso coffee machine, the beer maker uses capsules, which contain malt, yeast, hop oil and flavouring. At the press of a button, LG HomeBrew automates the whole procedure from fermentation and carbonation to ageing. A companion app lets users check HomeBrew’s status at any time during the process, from their handsets.

The beer machine not only offers a simple way to make craft beer, but also enhances the quality of beer it makes. The fermentation algorithm intelligently controls the fermenting process with precise temperature and pressure control. It automatically sanitises itself, using nothing more than hot water, ensuring everything is hygienically clean for the next batch.

Designed with discerning beer lovers in mind, HomeBrew allows for in-home production of batches of more than 4 litres of beer in a variety of styles. The following five distinctive, flavoured beers are available now: 

  • Hoppy American IPA
  • Golden American Pale Ale
  • Full-bodied English Stout
  • Zesty Belgian-style Witbier
  • Dry Czech Pilsner

The only catch? It takes about two weeks to make, depending on the beer type.

“LG HomeBrew is the culmination of years of home appliance and water purification technologies that we’ve developed over the decades,” said Dan Song, president of LG Electronics Home Appliance & Air Solutions Company. “Homebrewing has grown at an explosive pace, but there are still many beer lovers who haven’t taken the jump because of the barriers to entry, like complexity, and these are the consumers we think will be attracted to LG HomeBrew.”

Click here to read about the party speaker that holds beer and robots that pour beer.

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CES: Alienware gets Legend-ary

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At CES in Las Vegas last week, Dell’s Alienware released a family of high-end, thin, light, and affordable machines for both amateur and professional gamers – and a new identity.

Alienware marked CES 2019 as a brand milestone with the debut of a new design identity, Alienware Legend. It aims to set a new bar of excellence for what gamers want most – performance and function. Alienware says it evaluated multiple concepts and chose one that was the biggest and boldest departure from its current look.

Alienware Legend, says the company, stays true to the brand’s core design tenets, taking cues from its deep roots in sci-fi culture and its early industrial designs, to distinguish the brand from the rest of the industry. The new Legend design is optimised with cutting-edge thermal cooling technology to achieve and sustain overclocking power, improved AlienFX lighting, and ultra-thin screen borders. It also unveiled a new “three-knuckle hinge” design that reduces the overall dimension while creating a stronger assembly, all combining to yield a better gaming experience.

“We’re excited to come to this year’s CES with some truly groundbreaking products, next-gen software and strategic partnerships that will bring more people to experience PC gaming and advance the industry,” said Frank Azor, vice president and general manager of Alienware. “The legend design answers the call for more and better from our gaming community, and the new G Series laptops will make PC gaming even more accessible to those looking for high-performance gaming at a cost they can appreciate.”

Click here to read about Alienware Legend in action with the Area-51m and m-series laptops

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