The consumerization of IT means that 41 percent of office workers in the United States last year used smartphones or tablets on the job, according to Yankee Group stats. The percentage continues to rise as more enterprises allow employees to bring their own devices to the corporate network. But collaboration can grow complicated as some professionals use Android gadgets and others use Apple OS products. To that point, 8x8 Inc. this week unveiled a new version of its Virtual Office mobile PBX so businesses can facilitate productivity while also keeping communications budgets under control.
Virtual Office Mobile 4.0 now accommodates Apple's retina display on the iPhone and iPad, features improved audio and adds video calling. For resellers and agents, all of this makes 8x8's product stickier with the end user, an 8x8 spokesperson told Channel Partners at this week's ITEXPO in Austin, Texas.
Overall, Virtual Office Mobile lets users take their desktop extensions anywhere, so Caller ID shows an office number, not a private cell number; provides access to the corporate directory and presence settings; allows for transfer, call recording, click-to-call and more.
Version 4 is ready now for iOS; download it in the Apple App Store by searching for 8x8 Virtual Office. Support for the Android operating system will become available later this quarter.
“With Virtual Office Mobile 4.0, workers will now have a single voice and video softphone solution that works across all iOS devices, with no tradeoffs in call quality and user experience," Bryan Martin, chairman and CEO of 8x8, said in a press release.
Meantime, Matt Hutchinson, 8x8's channel chief, said the company is seeing more of its revenue – right now, a little less than 10 percent – come from mid-market sales via partners. The cloud provider is keen to add VARs who "really understand" professional services such as maintenance, contracts, CRM integration and other specialty offerings that reinforce customer loyalty, Hutchinson said.