C&W launches Virtual Office

A new product from Cable & Wireless will allow customers to have seamless communications anywhere in the world, even allowing companies that have multiple locations to use the same communications system.

Cable & Wireless officially launched the product, called Virtual Office, at a breakfast event for clients and the media at the restaurant Mezza last week.

The product will be offered in partnership with Nortel, whose director of sales and engineering Jamie Gibson was on hand for the launch.

‘Virtual Office will give small enterprises the same service and functionality as large enterprises,’ he said.

The system gives clients the ability to take a special Nortel handset anywhere in the world, plug it into a broadband Internet system, and have the same ease and quality of communications as they would in their regular office, including their same telephone number.

C&W Chief Executive Tim Adam said the mobility offered by Virtual Office was one of its most attractive aspects.

‘But I think one of the greatest functions of this product is its scalability,’ he said. ‘No matter what the size of your business, the only difference in respect of cost is the number of handsets you’ll need. Everyone gets the same functionality.’

Cable & Wireless Date Specialist Jefferson Tibbetts explained that Virtual Office functioned similarly to a PBX system, except that the hardware is kept at C&W’s One Technology Square building.

Virtual Office also offers businesses continuity in emergency situations. Because the core of the system is housed at Category 5-hurricane-rated One Technology Square – which has redundant generators in case of electrical failure – service would likely always continue. A Virtual Office subscriber would only have to go to a place that had electricity and an Internet connection to access the system.

‘It gives you instant redeployment,’ said Mr. Tibbetts. ‘All you need is a broadband connection. That’s it. You can be in Miami, New York or London – it doesn’t matter; it homes back to Cable & Wireless right here.’

Other features of the system include: four digit extension dialling for those on the network; the option of no capital outlay for equipment; multi-media communications, including video calling, conference calling and web conferencing; the ability to make system setting changes on the Internet; and unified messaging.

Mr. Tibbetts also pointed out that the cost of the system was very low, starting at $27 per month, per user. The special Nortel handsets required can be rented from Cable & Wireless or purchased for prices starting at $304.

Cable & Wireless Account Manager Rick Bengle said Virtual Office was all about connecting people and improving productivity, choice and flexibility.

‘You want to connect people anytime, anywhere and you want to do it easily,’ he said, adding that Virtual Office did just that.

With the core of the system housed at One Technology Square, Mr. Bengle pointed out that it didn’t take up any valuable office space.

‘It’s a nomadic service and the world is your office.’