AT&T launches cloud-based unified communications service

AT&T (NYSE: T) is giving businesses a less painful method for business users to collaborate across wireline and wireless domain with its new cloud-based unified communications (UC) service.    

Playing into the mobile nature of the business user, the telco's new UC Services allows users to unify their communications. Because all of the capabilities reside in AT&T's network, the services are available from any wireline or wireless device, meaning users can collaborate and communicate from any location.

In addition, the UC service allows users to immediately switch between different communications sessions. A user could, for example, switch from an IM chat to a phone call or a video conference.

The UC services consist of two primary elements: AT&T Unified Communications Central (UC Central) and AT&T Unified Communications Voice (UC Voice).

Providing a single interface for PC and mobile phones, AT&T UC Central integrates multiple communications and collaboration tools such as IM/chat, email, VoIP calling, web/audio and video conferencing, voicemail, unified messaging and mobility with presence.

Leveraging Cisco's (Nasdaq: CSCO) Hosted Collaboration Solution (HCS) platform, AT&T's UC Voice provides IP Telephony (IPT) from the AT&T cloud and can be used both as a stand-alone service or integrated with AT&T UC Central. One of the attributes that will resonate with cash-strapped businesses is that they don't have to invest in new PBXs and software to get these new capabilities.  

For more:
- see the release

Industry Voices: Making the business case for mobile data offloading: A service with no downside

Related articles:
Internet Society reveals IPv6 Day 2012 participants
Verizon, Sprint, USTelecom join challengers to USF reform plan
AT&T takes leadership spot on Gartner's APAC service provider quadrant