Nortel has appointed PQ Networks as its partner in the formation of Unified Networks (UN), a company aimed at providing converged network solutions.
The partnership, which will be operational in Africa and Europe, will see UN providing its customers with voice and data convergence applications from a single company.
Based on Nortel's PABX product, Call Pilot, the solution will integrate voice mail with Microsoft Exchange and Microsoft Outlook, effectively merging voice and data capabilities. Speaking to Computing SA, PQ Networks' managing director, Tim Knowles, says that the convergence of voice, data and video, will help improve customer relationship management (CRM) so that businesses will have more personalized contact with their customers, including those involved in e-commerce.
"Nortel chose us as a partner due to our client base as well as our existing skills set, partnered with our current installed base of data networks. According to statistics, 70 percent of prospective e-commerce buyers don't conclude transactions due largely to the lack of a personalized shopping experience.
"What we are offering will enable shoppers to get a personalized explanation about products they see on the Internet, this will give them a better understanding of the products and potentially increase e-commerce sales," Knowles explains.
Nortel Networks regional director of Sub-Saharan Africa, Doug Batchelor, says: "Current e-mail technologies only provide data capabilities."
Batchelor adds that PQ Networks has been appointed because it has the largest installed base of Nortel Networks customers, making the partnership viable. "PQ Networks has the consulting capabilities available to develop a total convergence solution for customers in the corporate market, many of whom have already expressed interest in implementing these technologies."