Most people think of the cloud as being removed from the local environment because, after all, it requires the addition of a browser to access. But thanks to innovation from the people at Plantronics, the cloud can now reach through the browser and be closer to the user than ever before. In fact, the company has an SDK, which for the first time bridges the worlds of mobile and enterprise communications as well as computing. While CTI or computer-telephony integration is not a new concept, Plantronics uses its Spokes software as communications middleware to seamlessly connect mobile telephony with cloud-based or on-premise enterprise software.
Moreover, the headset can now provide contextual information to applications such as the mobile call state, mobile Caller ID, proximity, presence and wearing state. One of the more compelling new apps that uses this interface is Popcorn from ThreeWill; it integrates with a PC/laptop, Chatter, Salesforce.com and mobile devices while monitoring incoming phone calls. When one comes in, it pops a screen based on caller information in corporate databases. The problem being solved is mobile workers have work calls coming to their cell phones which don’t necessarily provide complete details regarding the caller.
How this differs from a traditional screen pop, in this case, is the call is coming over the mobile network so the enterprise PBX is out of the loop. Instead, the caller ID information is transmitted over Bluetooth to the Spokes software by Plantronics, which gives other applications access and these apps can in-turn query corporate databases in the cloud and in the data center.
Moreover, Popcorn allows the user to quickly type in notes, which are automatically placed in the appropriate customer record saving time and effort.
Another company using the Plantronics APIs is Datahug, they have solution that looks at a person you are in contact with at a company and ascertains via social networks and emails which other people in the company has contacts in your organization. Until now, Datahug could not sift through telephony data but it now can, thanks to the middleware-nature of the new Spokes APIs.
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