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Nashua Mobile targets VOIP market

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Nashua Mobile has expanded its product offering with the introduction of its EasiVoice offering. EasiVoice offers a range of Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) business solutions designed to help companies of all sizes to drive down their telecommunications costs by offering them cost-savings on all types of calls.

Says Tim Walter, general manager for product and marketing at Nashua Mobile: “With the uncertainty surrounding the regulation of mobile termination rates in South Africa, the time is ripe for businesses of all sizes to migrate onto VOIP solutions to achieve cost-savings in their telecommunications environments.””

‚With VOIP solutions in place, companies will be able to save money on cellular calls, as they did with least-cost routing solutions in the past, as well as achieve significant cost-savings on calls to local and International fixed-line numbers,”” says Walter.

‚The voice communications account forms a significant chunk of most businesses’ operating costs,‚ adds Walter. By adopting VOIP, they can make across the board savings on calls to most destinations without needing to make any significant capital outlays.

Nashua Mobile’s EasiVoice solutions are competitively priced, with three packages catering to businesses of different sizes:

· For smaller organisations, EasiVoice Business offers five 087 numbers and up to R600 off calls per month, for a monthly subscription of only R500 on a one-year contract.

· EasiVoice Enterprise, for mid-sized and larger businesses offers R11,000 of calls and twenty 087 numbers for R10,500 a month on a 12 month contract.

· EasiVoice Enterprise+, a 24-month contract billed at R10,000 month, includes twenty 087 numbers and the first R11,000 off calls.

In all cases, customers have the flexibility of choosing between per-minute and per-second billing.

Per second billing is as low as R0,35 per minute for local Telkom calls, R0,50 for national Telkom calls and R1,35 to cellular numbers.

Calls are billed per minute at rates as low as R0,29 to local Telkom numbers, R0,41 to national Telkom numbers and R1,10 to cellular numbers. On-net (Nashua Mobile VOIP to Nashua Mobile VOIP) calls are billed at R0,13 for per second billing and R0,08 for per minute billing.

Walter says that VOIP offers businesses a host of benefits in addition to the cost-savings it delivers. It is flexible technology that allows companies to deploy their voice and data services on a single converged network.

It makes it simpler to provision and move extensions around than it is with an analogue PBX as well as more cost effective and simpler to maintain networking infrastructure.

‚We make it easy for companies to procure both mobile and fixed voice as well as data solutions from one company that can present them with a single bill for all these services each month,‚ says Walter.

To apply for EasiVoice or to speak to a consultant please call 0861 412 412 or email easisolutions@nashuamobile.com.

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Telcos want one face

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The investments that telecommunications service providers are making in reshaping their online properties into customer-centric portals reflects the growing maturity of self-service and Internet uptake in the industry, says KEVIN MELTZER of Consology.

Many telcos around the world are overhauling their websites to offer customers more holistic portals that give them a single point of entry into the organisation.

They are doing so because they recognise that service will be a key point of differentiation for their businesses in a market that is becoming increasingly competitive. They have also realised that they have a major opportunity to shift customers away from expensive contact centres towards low-cost electronic channels.

In the past, most telecommunications operators ran multiple sites across multiple domains and subdomains. These web-based properties were built around the way that telcos structured their own businesses rather than around the needs of the customer. But we are now seeing the leading operators take a more user-centric approach to the way that they design their web and mobile sites.

This coincides with a change in the industry from slicing customers into numerous segments and then serving them across a range of functional and product areas. For example, many operators split customers into prepaid and postpaid segments or voice and data users, distinctions that are becoming less meaningful in a world of technology convergence. They now want to present a single face to the customer rather than servicing the subscriber through silos.

These changes are starting to percolate through to operators’ customer service and sales strategies. Telcos are starting to pull together disparate products and services that once resided across multiple sites into customer service portals.

These sites put a wide range of information at the subscriber’s fingertips, he adds. Increasingly, for example, subscribers can log directly into their accounts from the operator’s homepage and then access a wealth of services and information. This marks an evolution from the fractured and inconsistent customer experience of the past.

Leading operators are even thinking about how their Self-Service platforms should be integrated with social media strategies to allow customers to pay their electronic bills or top up airtime with a single click from within a social network.

Whereas Self-Service portals on telco sites were once purely about account management functions, they increasingly offer far richer functionality. In addition to allowing subscribers to pay their bills and check their account information, they are also increasingly becoming the first stop for service and commerce.

Operators have started to recognise that splintering their e-commerce, service and account management functions simply makes no sense. Customers want to be able to do everything through one interface rather than needing to visit two or three Web sites, or eventually possibly needing to phone a call centre or visit a store for certain transactions.

Integrated and easy to use online customer service channels will be central for telco operators who want to be competitive in the markets of tomorrow. They form an advantage in an industry where it will be customer relationships rather than cost or service that drive loyalty and purchasing decisions.

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Talk for less with MWEB Talk

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Today, MWEB announced its consumer VoIP package called MWEB Talk, which allows users to make free network calls and get discounted rates made to landlines and mobile phones.

MWEB, today launched its new Voice over IP (VoIP) offering to South African consumers. The service, MWEB Talk, will offer users’ free on network calls to fellow MWEB Talk users’ and cheap calls to landline and mobile phone numbers. This follows the success and demand of the ISP’s existing VoIP products in recent months.

‚”We have seen a noticeable transformation in users’ Internet behaviour with consumers wanting services that complement their ADSL connectivity solution. We have seen phenomenal growth and by the end of the year will deliver over 100 million minutes on our VoIP platform,‚” says Carolyn Holgate, General Manager of MWEB Connect, the ISP’s Consumer and Small Office/ Home Office Division.

MWEB has made significant investments in its infrastructure and VoIP has been prioritised on its network to ensure performance and stability of the MWEB Talk service for both businesses and consumers.

‚”In addition to the high quality of the service, MWEB Talk is also simple to set-up and users’ should experience a significant reduction in their telephone bills. By implementing a VoIP service consumers and small businesses can cut their monthly telecommunication bills by up to 55% to landline and mobile numbers,‚” says Holgate.

With no subscription fee, existing MWEB customers can log into their MWEB account, register for the service and download the application for PC and Mac as well as mobile applications that turn an iPhone, Android, and Nokia smartphone into a VoIP phone. Customers will also be able to purchase a Desktop VoIP Handset for R99 which will be HD voice ready and will support multi-extensions.

‚”We believe that VoIP is the future of telephony in South Africa and we are extremely excited to see the consumer market shift into the VoIP space,‚” concludes Holgate.

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