This release will be available in the early March for field tests and expected to be fully available for commercial deployment in April 2009.
- Routing plan selection - Multiple routing plans can now be associated with a single product. A specific tariff can be assigned to each routing plan. This tariff will be used when a customer subscribed to a specific plan places a call. In this case, a customer chooses to pay more for premium routes or to pay less less for cheaper routes.
A default routing plan may be associated with a specific account, or the end-user may select a specific routing plan “on-the-fly” by dialing a special selection code before the number.
- Dynamic re-authorization - The traditional authorization scheme - the system checks an amount of available funds at the end of each call - has many drawbacks. For example, the system does not react to balance changes (refunds, payments, or charges) made while the call is in progress. There is also a possibility of overdrafts in case when multiple simultaneous calls are allowed.
PortaBilling now offers the ability to dynamically re-authorize the user’s activity. While a session (e.g. voice call) is in progress, the system “reserves” a small portion of the available funds to cover the next short time interval (e.g. 1 minute). As the end of this interval comes near, the system attempts to reserve funds to cover the next interval, and so on. If no remaining funds are available, the call is disconnected.
So when a customer sends an SMS message during a phone call (decreasing the available funds), or makes a credit card payment (increasing the available funds), this immediately affects the call: it will be either disconnected sooner, or the maximum allowed call time will increase.
- Subscriptions charged in advance - This feature allows to bad debt reduction and improves ITSP's cash-flow. Recurring charges can now be applied to future billing periods (e.g. subscription charges for March will be included on the invoice which the customer receives in February).
- Alias generator - It is now possible to generate multiple aliases (e.g. DID numbers for a SIP trunking customer) under one account, in the same convenient way as when generating multiple accounts under a customer.
- Account migration tool - Based on popular demand, a new function has been introduced in the XML API. This allows you to “move” an account from one customer to another, replicating the entire service configuration (account ID, password, service features, follow-me, and other related settings) and subscriptions on the new account, and terminating the old one (a copy of all old activity – CDRs, payments, etc. – thus remains available). This allows quick transfers in case of a data cleanup (e.g. customer merge).
- Internet access service - PortaBilling now fully supports the provisioning of an Internet access service (DSL, ADSL, PPPoE) for Cisco BRAS and other compatible equipment. A PortaBilling administrator can provision the amount of available bandwidth per product or individual account, and also perform static IP allocation for certain accounts.
- BLF support - This highly popular IP Centrex feature extends PortaSIP’s presence capability to popular modes of “business” IP phones (e.g. Polycom), so that a secretary can see the line status of other extensions.
- Voice-to-text service - PortaUM is now integrated with the GotVoice service, which converts recorded voice mails into text messages, which can then be read from an email client or mobile phone. VoIP providers using PortaSwitch can now reliably offer subscribers the ability to read their voice mails and process information instantly.