Like many companies, Belgium-based Voxbone is seeing tremendous growth in mobile. The 10-year-old company, which provides worldwide geographical and toll-free telephone numbers for direct inward dialing (DID) to service providers around the globe, recently entered the mobile space by offering mobile phone numbers to its service provider customers.
"In the U.S., phone numbers do not have distinct ranges for mobile vs. fixed," said Hugh Goldstein, vice president of strategic alliances for Voxbone. "But in Europe, it's quite a significant distinction – users would find it very strange to send a SMS to what they perceive as a fixed line. We saw a need for our customers to have a mobile number associated with their VoIP service and started to acquire licenses for ranges with intention of reselling to our customers, including OTT players."
Voxbone has commercialized and brought to market these services in the UK, Spain and Sweden, with the intent of providing similar services to the rest of the European Union countries within the next few years.
"The OTT market has most to gain," Goldstein said. "If they are offering a mobile app, it will be a strong upsell to offer a real international number to their market, whether it be their home market or if they want to expand into a new market. Mobile operators can also use the services to enter adjacent markets with numbers associated with that market."
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Voxbone is also seeing strong uptake for its services in the contact center market. The company made a decision that contact centers are a great fit for their services because of the globalization of the contact center industry. If an enterprise wants to sell internationally, Voxbone can open up contacts center to those new markets by opening new phone numbers and forwarding calls to the contact center, wherever that call center happens to be. Using Voxbone, call centers can be "localized" by instantly deploying different numbers for different geographical locations, and all are forwarded to the contact center that is servicing that area. Calls are routed through SIP and customers can change routing based on time of day and other metrics.
"The gives customers the flexibility to source numbers, manage numbers and manage capacity," Goldstein said. "That's a good match for Voxbone's capabilities."
Voxbone, which is exhibiting this week at ITEXPO in Miami at booth No. 900, is also working on partnerships with unified communications vendors to better serve the needs of its service provider customers, but UC also opens up another potential outlet – direct selling to enterprises as they migrate to UC. Working with Voxbone, enterprises would have the flexibility to reevaluate their vendor relations, optimize their carrier services and deploy new services, such as global numbers.