Free phone service could boost Dialpad's UCaaS status

UCaaS provider Dialpad is offering a free cloud telephony service that integrates with G Suite, while a new partner program offers Workplace by Facebook support.

Unified-communications-as-a-service provider Dialpad has released a free version of its cloud business phone system for small organizations with up to five employees.

Subscribers to the service, Dialpad Free, will receive one free office phone number and up to five employees can be dialed by name or as extensions. The free phone service includes the most basic telephony features, except for e911.

The features of the Dialpad Free phone service include 100 outbound calling minutes per month, unlimited inbound calling minutes, 100 inbound and outbound text messages per month, call recording, voicemail and video calling between Dialpad users. The system also integrates with LinkedIn and Google G Suite.

"A lot of small tech startups are using Google's G Suite for email, calendar and documents," Nemertes Research analyst Irwin Lazar said. "Being able to use Dialpad for free, which tightly integrates into G Suite, should be attractive."

While the Dialpad Free phone service won't generate significant revenue for the provider, Lazar said the service could help boost Dialpad's recognition in the competitive UCaaS market.

Organizations can download the Dialpad app onto a desktop, laptop, tablet or smartphone. There are free apps for Mac, Windows, iOS and Android. For a limited time, there will be no charge for transferring an existing phone line to the Dialpad Free service. However, there is a $3 fee for porting a number away from Dialpad Free.

Facebook partners push Workplace adoption

Talk Social to Me, a tech consulting firm, and ServiceRocket, a provider of Workplace by Facebook apps, have partnered to create an adoption program for Workplace by Facebook.

The partnership, called Elevate, will offer Workplace by Facebook support for enterprise customers with a regulated and deskless workforce. Elevate offers customers access to ServiceRocket's Moderation and Insights apps, which provide data on how Workplace by Facebook is used in the enterprise, alongside Talk Social to Me's consulting services.

The majority of the 30,000 organizations that have adopted Workplace by Facebook are in industries that employ deskless workers, such as healthcare, retail and manufacturing. These organizations tend to have complex working environments comprised of hourly and part-time workers.

"We know that business value is best achieved when companies concerned with HIPAA, employee unions and large hourly populations can discover and respond immediately to business and social conversations," Talk Social to Me CEO Carrie Basham Young said.

CPaaS gains ground for embedded video

Communications platform as a service (CPaaS) is becoming the deployment model of choice for embedded video, according to a report from video conferencing vendor Vidyo, based in Hackensack, N.J. The report surveyed 166 developers in 48 countries and found more than half of developers have implemented some form of video chat.

Developers looking to embed video into enterprise apps have four deployment models to consider:

  • a full internal development where the majority of the video technology is developed in-house;
  • commercially available software that is integrated as part of the deployment;
  • open source software that is used as is or customized by the developer; and
  • CPaaS, which embeds video via an API platform.

According to the report, early adopters of embedded video prefer open source and CPaaS deployment models. CPaaS is growing in popularity as 78% of respondents plan to use CPaaS for embedded video, with nearly half planning to use CPaaS in the next 12 months.

The top considerations for deploying CPaaS include the support for various devices and operating systems, WebRTC support, high availability and the ability to sustain calls over unreliable networks.

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