I attended a Small Business IT conference in Toronto a few weeks ago and we were fortunate to see get first Canadian Partner look at Microsoft’s Response Point system. Response Point has been available in the US for about a year now and with the service pack 1 release it will now be available in Canada.
So what is Response Point? To put it simply, Response Point is a hardware and software phone system designed for small businesses (1 to 50 phones). The software is developed by Microsoft and embedded into the hardware phone system. There are three approved hardware manufacturers making the handsets and base units Syspine, D-Link and Aastra.
The system works with your existing telephone lines and with the release of service pack 1, also with VOIP providers.
The handset plug into the Ethernet port in your office and then your computer can plug into the handset. With this configuration, you can make calls using the client software on your PC by clicking on your contact list. The client software also shows you the status of other users using the system on your network.
The strong point of the system though is it’s voice recognition features. You can pick up parked calls, transfer calls or dial calls using voice commands.
Other features that come included in the system;
No answer call transfer
Voicemail to Email
Forwarding to Mobile devices
Ability to pick up parked calls from anywhere
Easy setup and changes
Built in Voicemail
Music on Hold
Power over Ethernet handsets
Integrated Caller ID that works when call is transferred to another user.
Three way calling
The price of the system is affordable for most small businesses. For example a base unit and 4 handsets can be purchased for approximately 2500.00. Additional handsets (can be mixed and matched between vendors) can be purchased for as little as 139.00 each.
Because it is a complete hardware and software system, many new features can be added via software updates.
While there are some limitations in version 1 and in SP 1 (lack of fax handling, no Active Directory integration, no direct Outlook integration), for most businesses these will not be deal breakers.
We here at Sysguy Consulting are currently trying to get one of the Syspine Demo kits to test and demonstrate the system. We will write a more detailed review once we play with it for a bit and again after the SP 1 release. If you are interested in learning more about Response Point please feel free to contact us.