Natural Convergence Inc.

Natural Convergence Inc.

September 19, 2005 10:44 ET

Natural Convergence Extends Product's Core Strengths with silhouette Release 2.0

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Sept. 19, 2005) -

Service providers and small business benefit from advanced call handling, specialized applications and zero touch provisioning

Natural Convergence Inc., a supplier of VoIP (Voice over IP) application software for service providers, today announced silhouette Release 2.0, the latest version of their flagship product aimed at service providers targeting the small business market. Recognized for its exceptional incoming call management and customer self-service capabilities, silhouette Release 2.0 expands on these core strengths while extending the customer desktop portfolio and introducing several in-demand applications.

silhouette is a carrier-grade hosted VoIP application designed to allow service providers to address the underserved small business market. With silhouette, small businesses can easily manage their own phone services via any broadband connection. Built to replace key system technology, silhouette requires no premises-based equipment to install or maintain. Offering cost savings and increased revenue opportunities to service providers and a simple-to-use, cost effective communications service to the end customer, silhouette is the ideal solution to serve the small business market.

At the end of 2004, the US key system installed base (under 100 lines) was approximately 32 million, which is four times larger than the comparable PBX installed base (under 100 lines). Recent line shipment data shows a dramatic shift from old TDM PBXs to new IP PBX/Hybrids. In contrast, the older TDM key system line shipments remain at their traditional levels indicating that while small business is replacing their older key systems, they have not found a viable, next-generation solution to satisfy their needs. With almost 40% of small business owners interested in purchasing a phone system as a hosted service (Yankee Group 2004 SMB Bundled Communications Survey), a significant opportunity awaits service providers interested in generating new revenues and expanding their customer portfolio.

"We believe this is the right time for service providers to be focused on small business. The market is poised and ready for VoIP solutions and a hosted service is the right fit for their cost, control and productivity concerns," said David Cork, Chief Executive Officer, Natural Convergence Inc. "This latest release of silhouette clearly demonstrates our commitment to ensuring service providers can be successful in the small business market. We've focused on feature enhancements that make it easier than ever for service providers to deploy and support silhouette. At the same time, we've made the product simpler and more cost effective for the end user which improves its overall attractiveness to the market."

Designed For Small Business

Flexible incoming call management capabilities remain fundamental to the day-to-day activities of small business. With this latest release the company has added to silhouette's simple yet effective feature set with Monitor Group, which gives any user full monitoring capabilities of other assigned lines within the organization. This extension of silhouette's Call Group functionality and the addition of personal DIDs give small business owners a complete set of options to ensure no call into their business goes unanswered.

Lack of technical expertise and a natural inclination to save money makes self-service capabilities an attractive selling feature to small business owners. Features like self administration for move/ add/ changes and an improved web interface enable small business owners to mange their own phone system, reducing their reliance on outside vendors and time spent learning to use their phone system. silhouette Release 2.0 also makes zero touch provisioning for service providers a reality by auto-registering phones and integrating the provisioning of voicemail services with a single click of a mouse.

Expanding The Desktop Portfolio

silhouette Release 2.0 continues to support the newest handset technology for the small business market through a partner relationship with Mitel Networks. The desktop portfolio now includes the Mitel 52xx IP phone series, the Mitel 5412 and 5448 IP PKM (Programmable Key Module) and the Mitel 5310 Conference Unit. This portfolio aims to deliver a full range of cost-effective business phones to address the needs of various small business environments.

Specialized Applications For Small Business

silhouette Release 2.0 introduces a set of specialized applications for small businesses including an Attendant Console. Used in conjunction with the new Monitor Group feature and the Mitel 5448 IP PKM, a receptionist or office administrator can oversee up to 120 lines in an organization. They can monitor lines of individual employees and see when lines are busy, allowing for efficient handling of incoming calls. Familiar Group Secretary functionality can now also be achieved by combining the latest release of silhouette with the Mitel 5412 IP PKM. The third new application is a fully integrated messaging solution that was developed through a partnership with CommonVoices. Service providers can now offer their customers a proven voicemail solution that is automatically provisioned as each new user is added to the phone system.

Pricing and Availability

silhouette Release 2.0 is scheduled for general availability by year end. Our solution is offered to service providers on a subscription license basis or as a perpetual, one-time license purchase. For pricing information, please contact a Natural Convergence Sales Representative at sales@naturalconvergence.com or call 613.280.2000.

The first opportunity to view silhouette Release 2.0 occurs this week at the Fall VON 2005 Conference and Expo (Booth #526) taking place at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, September 19-22. For show details, visit www.von.com.

About Natural Convergence

Natural Convergence Inc. develops and markets innovative software applications that empower carriers and service providers to rapidly deploy hosted VoIP services. Our silhouette feature server is designed specifically for the small business market, combining powerful technology with familiar functionality to replace their aging key systems. The bottom line is a highly differentiated, flexible and profitable VoIP service that carriers can offer their small business customers as part of a compelling services bundle. Natural Convergence was founded in April 2001 with offices in Allen, TX and headquarters in Ottawa, Canada. For more details, visit www.naturalconvergence.com or call 613.280.2000.

Contact Information

  • Editor Contact:
    High Road Communications
    Laura Slater
    (613) 236-0909 ext 317
    lslater@ highroad.com
    or
    Corporate Contact:
    Natural Convergence
    Meranda Waters
    (613) 280-2000 ext 374
    meranda.waters@naturalconvergence.com