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No Jitter Roll: Instagram Messenger Support, Teams Calling Packages

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This week we share announcements around Instagram messaging support, Microsoft Teams-UCaaS integration packages, a UC management acquisition, co-browsing with voice and video support, and automatic speech recognition (ASR).
 
Facebook Opens Up Instagram Messaging API, Vendors Add Support
At its F8 developer conference this week, Facebook announced it has now made the Messenger API for Instagram available to developers for their use in enabling businesses to send messages to and receive messages from customers via Instagram. A variety of vendors have announced related plans, including:
 
  • Genesys — businesses will be able to interact with consumers through Instagram Direct Messenger to deliver personalized experiences, such as answering product questions and address concerns based on customer profile and service history, Genesys said. Likewise, consumers will be able to directly message businesses from within Instagram, as well as start a conversation with a live agent from the messaging feed, Genesys added.
  • Nuanceadded Messenger API support for Instagram as another channel option for its Intelligent Engagement platform, Nuance said. For personalized interactions, businesses will be able to pull contextual data from other channels and systems into Instagram messaging, Nuance added.
  • Sinch — businesses can now support messaging via Instagram through Sinch’s Conversation API, which already allows businesses to engage in conversation with customers via WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, SMS, and other consumer channels.

 

NEC Offers Voice Options for Microsoft Teams
NEC this week introduced two integrations aimed at providing Microsoft Teams users the ability to use its UCaaS platform, Univerge Blue Connect, all telephony-related services. The first integration package, Univerge Blue Connect "With" Microsoft Teams, is aimed at organizations that use Teams for collaboration but need advanced calling features, NEC said.
 
With this implementation, the collaboration features — chat, meetings, and file sharing — within Univerge Blue Connect are disabled. Rather, the integration allows users to sign into the NEC platform with their Microsoft 365 credentials and then access Teams for these collaboration functions while using Univerge Blue Connect from within Teams for voice calls, SMS, advanced call routing, and other phone-related services, NEC said.
 
The second integration package, Univerge Blue Connect "For" Microsoft Teams, lets organizations add PBX functionality into Teams. Via Univerge Blue Connect, Teams users have access to unlimited local and long-distance calling, voicemail, call history, and basic calling features, NEC said. The integration includes support for additional PBX features like auto-attendant, call-queuing, automatic companywide call recording, and more within the Teams interface, NEC added.
 
Unisys Acquires Unify Square
Unisys, a global provider of IT services, software, and technology, this week announced that it has acquired UC management provider Unify Square for $152.5 million in a debt-free, cash transaction.
 
While becoming a core part of the Unisys digital workplace services business, Unify Square will retain its well-established brand identity and employee base, John Case, CEO, Unify Square, said during an email exchange with No Jitter. Unify Square’s management team will remain in place, reporting to Leon Gilbert, senior vice president, digital workplace services, Unisys, Case added.
 
Unisys will additionally invest in Unify Square to accelerate its current and future software managed services roadmap, Case said.
 
LogMeIn Adds Video and Voice to Rescue Live Guide
Unified communications and collaboration provider LogMeIn this week announced that it has incorporated two-way video and voice calling into its Rescue Live Guide co-browsing software. The goal, LogMeIn said, is to allow businesses to provide more personalized virtual support as they walk customers through products and services in real-time.
 
Deepgram Delivers AI-Driven Product Enhancements
ASR technology provider Deepgram this week announced the availability of three new product features. They are:
 
  • Conversational AI — allows customers to have a base model tuned to conversational AI use cases, tailorable by domain. This feature reduces the response lag to less than 300 milliseconds, allowing for improvements in word error rate while also reducing noise and filtering crosstalk, Deepgram said.
  • Sales and support enablement — enabling faster recognition of real-time offers should reduce customer churn while accurate call analytics and transcripts for coaching should improve employee success, Deepgram said.
  • Real-time streaming — offers less than 300 millisecond time lag and more than 90% transcription accuracy, Deepgram said. It can also process audio data and provide correct responses, insight, and results with tailored speech models.

These features can be tailored for specific high-volume voice tasks like billing, support, add-on sales, compliance, or ID verifications, while real-time streaming allows software platforms to immediately push sales tips and knowledgebase solutions to salespeople and support agents, Deepgram said.

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