ShoreTel Extends Mobility Platform To Cloud Services Customers


ShoreTel Tuesday unveiled its Mobility solution for cloud services customers -- an expected blending of technologies taken from the major acquisitions ShoreTel has made in the past two years.

ShoreTel Mobility for cloud customers extends voice and unified communications applications to user mobile devices, and the initial launch will support Apple's iPhone, with updates for Android and BlackBerry-based devices expected later in the summer.

"The need for mobility is in even greater demand in the cloud, so this was the first application we decided to integrate," Pej Roshan, vice president of mobility at Sunnyvale, Calif.-based ShoreTel, told CRN. "A cloud customer doesn't have the overhead of administration, and this is a logical add-on."

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In addition to extending UC features to mobile users, ShoreTel Mobility, which was created from technology ShoreTel acquired with Agito Networks in 2010, automatically detects and selects the best available network, be it cellular or Wi-Fi.

Now it'll be available for customers ShoreTel supports with hosted communications. ShoreTel Cloud Division customers will be able to deploy the technology for a setup fee of $20 per user and then use it for a $10 per-user/per-month fee.

ShoreTel acquired M5 Networks earlier this year for $146 million, and rebranded it the ShoreTel Cloud Division. It began recruiting solution providers to sell hosted UC services almost immediately, and at an event in New York last month, teased the combination of M5 cloud services with the ShoreTel Mobility platform.

Roshan said the ShoreTel teams got working on how to enable the mobility technology for hosted users right away. Because the original mobility router was designed to be vendor-agnostic, and the primary communications protocol in use is standards-based SIP, it wasn't too difficult to integrate with M5's platform.

"We're evolving toward a mode where all of these things will just light up instantly," Roshan said. "We're taking advantage of the synergies of the company. We have lots of good stuff to come."