For some years industry analysts have complained that many business applications don’t integrate with each other, forcing users to jump from one piece of software or Web site to another for accessing communications and collaboration tools.
There are ways to integrate these tools into business processes, but they can be complex to use.
Network equipment maker Genband Inc. believes it has an answer by assembling voice, video, SMS, conferencing, collaboration and Web RTC apps which it says can be easily dropped into any application.
It will sell the apps through a platform as a service called Kandy, because, as company executive vice-president Paul Pluschkell said in an interview, it involves “little pieces of real time communications embedded into business applications and objects in the way you work for your customers.”
Briefly, the code of the apps are embedded in software through RESTful APIs, which makes calls to Kandy’s cloud for communications. Kandy also offers administrators analytics and to charge back customers for using the capabilities.
One potential use would be allowing a sales person to have access to an icon to initiate a voice or video call to a customer without leaving the onscreen business application being viewed.
Among the early adopters is SAP AG, which will use some of the apps in its customer relationship management suite.
Kandy’s PaaS solution is aimed at developers, system integrators and network service providers.
The Kandy apps are Genband solutions, some of which it bought recently. They include
—SPiDR, a WebRTC gateway;
—Nuvia, a cloud-based unified communications suite that can be offered through service providers;
—ExperiUS, a messaging manager
—uReach.com, a unified communications suite for enterprises
–and Fring, an over the top solution that allows free messaging, voice and video calls from mobile devices.
These can also be bought through Kandy and customized by developers.
Kandy apps can be subscribed to in several ways: Generally, they cost US$2 per user per month. There’s also a premium service for five users, a negotiated volume price for enterprises and a package for service providers, who can white label the service and tie it into their back ends.
In some ways Kandy is similar to Twilio, which also offers the ability to embed VoIP and messaging into Web, desktop and mobile applications.
Pluschkell said Kandy will leverage Genband’s sales staff for selling its services. Earlier this yeare Genband appointed Dave Shier as senior-vice-president of sales for Canada, and designated this country as a distinct sales territory. \
Genband recently opened a research and development centre of excellence in Ottawa, where it has had operations since 2010 when it bought Nortel Networks’ carrier voice over internet and application solution assets.
Genband’s customers here include Bell Aliant, Telus, Videotron and TBayTel.