ShoreTel Expands Support for Video, SIP On VoIP Platform

communications interface software

ShoreTel Monday unveiled ShoreTel 8, the latest version of its unified communications system software. With the update, ShoreTel has added ShoreWare Professional Call Manager, a new high-end desktop client aimed at power users.

ShoreWare Professional Call Manager is an optional full unified communications client that incorporates an integrated soft phone and videoconferencing capabilities. It can also act as a client for a back-end presence server, such as Microsoft Office Live Communications Server 2005, and enables users to control calling features such as which phone their calls should be routed to.

With Professional Call Manager, users can make point-to-point video calls within the enterprise.

"It's a great opportunity for our channel partners to get into video without becoming video engineers," said Jeff Ridley, director of application product management for ShoreTel, Sunnyvale, Calif. "It won't handle all [videoconferencing] needs, but it supplements voice communications."

Sponsored post

ShoreTel also updated ShoreWare Call Manager, the more basic desktop client that is included with its user license, adding a new tabbed user interface designed to speed access voicemail, call history, directories and speed dial.

The vendor also added built-in support for SIP endpoints, a move one solution provider said is key for ShoreTel and its customers. The vendor previously supported SIP trunking.

Customers want to be able to use third-party phones such as Polycom IP conference phones or Wi-Fi phones, and now ShoreTel 8 allows that, said Terry Siemens, client executive at Peak Uptime, a solution provider in Tulsa, Okla.

The addition of support for SIP handsets will open up new customers for Peak Uptime, he said. In the past, some customers have chosen not to go with ShoreTel because it lacked SIP phone support, Siemens said. "If we had ShoreTel 8 two years ago, there were opportunities that we would have won."

ShoreTel has also added new voice switches, including the ShoreGear 30 for branch locations with up to 10 users, and the ShoreGear 24A for high-density analog deployments.

The new products are available now in the U.S. Licenses for ShoreWare Personal Call Manager are $80, a SIP Device License is $30, the ShoreGear 30 is priced at $1,595 and the ShoreGear 24A is priced at $2,995.