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1 July 2014

PortaOne Delivers New Features in PortaSwitch Maintenance Release 41

PortaOne announced availability of MR41-0, the newest version of PortaSwitch, communication services delivery platform.

MR41 Highlights

  • Self-management for assigned add-on products
  • Mailbox Quota Control
  • Call forwarding as a value-added feature
  • Call recording as a value-added feature
  • Invoice Rounding
  • Mass change of add-on configuration via batch update
  • US taxation via SureTax
  • Automated Billing of DID numbers
  • SIP over TCP for vendors
  • Extended API
The most important improvements in the functionality include:

Self-management for assigned add-on products - Now an end-user can autonomously activate new add-on products to gain access to new features of the service; via the same interface he/she can remove no longer necessary add-on products. This immediately updates the service configuration and adjusts its recurring fees. So from now on, increasing revenue via selling value added services "a-la carte" is done without any additional load on your helpdesk / administrators.

Mailbox Quota Control - Now the maximum allowed size of a user's mailbox (for storing voicemail and faxes) is controlled via the respective attribute of an account's product. This allows for differentiation between default settings for various types of customers (e.g. business IP Centrex users need to store more data than residential users). When users need more space, they may purchase add-on products that will increase the limit.

Call forwarding as a value-added feature - Call forwarding management (whether it is a simple forwarding or follow-me service) has been fully integrated into the service configuration at the product level. This both reduces time spent on administration work and increases revenue via selling access to various types of follow-me services via add-on products.

Call recording as a value-added feature - Similar to call forwarding described above, it is now possible to bundle the access to call recording functionality into a main or add-on product. The ability to conveniently manage call recording via a combination of products assigned to an individual phone line (account) drastically reduces administrative efforts compared to the management of the previous model (where call recording was allowed at the customer level).

Invoice Rounding - To simplify reconciliation between customer balances, invoice amounts and payments received it is now possible to round each invoice's amount to a value correctly represented in the local currency (e.g. for invoices in USD one only needs 2 decimal places to represent cents). The correction transaction is stored in the database as a separate xDR, so all amounts in the system are in balance.

Mass change of add-on configuration via batch update - Add-on products provided an extremely powerful tool for PortaSwitch administrators to provide flexible and custom-tailored services for a large number of end-users with minimum administration effort. To simplify the migration of existing accounts (that have only the main product assigned) to a main+add-on combination, it is now possible to perform such assignments for a whole batch of accounts.

US taxation via SureTax - The SureTax service offers another option for properly calculating all required local and federal taxes for US customers. SureTax operates as a remote service, so all API communication takes place over a secure Internet channel.

This allows SureTax to offer a "pay-as-you-go" model, based on the actual transaction volume; this fits very well with the business model of start-up telco operators, since their costs are minimal while the number of customers is low.

Automated Billing of DID numbers - In case a service operator buys DID numbers from a "traditional" telco (which does not offer any real-time on-demand provisioning capabilities), it still possible to upload DIDs and associated costs for each DID into the PortaSwitch inventory. Then it is also possible to utilize the automated DID billing tool wherein a customer can be assigned any DID and be charged the actual DID cost + mark up (something that was previously only available for real-time on-demand DID provisioning).

SIP over TCP for vendors - In addition to working with CPE (IP phones or IP PBXes) using SIP over TCP it is now possible to utilize SIP over TCP for outgoing connections to an external vendor for wholesale call termination. This extends the possibilities for interoperability among various telecom operators around the world.

Extended API - The PortaBilling XML/JSON API has been extended with methods for access to the information about nodes; products; and services.


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