Voipfone - The Future Of Communication

The Future is upon us – EclecticTM

dreamstime_xs_83531342VoIP radically re-structured telecommunications – and continues to do so – but there’s a new(ish) acronym attracting the tech journalists and will radically disturb the way things are done; MaaS – Mobility as a Service. The ‘asS’ bit isn’t new of course, originating in the Software as a Service industry, the idea being that instead of owning software like Word, you rent it and it becomes a service rather than a product. It clicks with a general change taking place of rental rather than ownership in, for example, the property market. And, of course, renting VoIP based PBX services in the Cloud rather than buying a physical box in your office and maintaining it yourself. Cars too are increasingly being leased.

But MaaS goes several steps further and is genuinely capable of changing the way we all live. Volkswagen, for instance, recently announced a driverless ride-hailing service in Israel. This is an enormous step and will inevitably lead to the need to no longer own (or even lease), park, fuel and maintain your own car – when you need one, you summon it from the app on your phone and it disappears again once it’s delivered you to wherever you need to go. This will in turn lead to a massive reduction of cars littering our streets, car parks and driveways. And, of course, all the cars will be electric – a more ecologically sustainable energy source.

I’m now going to invent a new term for these new vehicles, ‘eco-electric’ or simply, eclecticTM.
It requires the cooperation of government to enable legislation and changes to transport infrastructure – big things, which the Israeli government have committed to doing. VW are using the Israel experiment as a test bed for its global ambitions

Full commercial services are to start in 2022; can’t wait.

Yet More Regulation

dreamstime_xs_88584861It seems these days that the majority of our effort goes into complying with an ever-increasing pile of regulation. Having just recovered from the months of work that went into GDPR we have two more burdens to carry this month; Ofcom’s new requirements for handling Calling Line Identity (CLI) followed closely by their new rules about handling customer complaints.

It’s difficult to argue with the CLI changes; we all want to stop the misuse of telephony by unscrupulous and out-and-out criminals who spoof their call identities, so all I’m doing here really is sighing at yet another development resource being eaten up by regulation. But this one is a good one, so we can at least feel holy about it.

But the complaints changes are a different story. Apparently, a telephone company that I can’t name, has been behaving badly whilst handling customers who have a genuine complaint to make about their service. But instead of dealing with that one large company, they introduce a new pile of bureaucracy across the entire industry regardless of size.

So now we all have to keep a monthly log of all complaints – resolved or not, retrain all staff, keep a complaints code and keep it up to date and a pile of other procedural, interfering, nannying nonsense. The problem is confounded by trying to define what a complaint actually is. Is it someone asking us to fix a fault? Is it someone telling us that calls to Narnia are too expensive?

Up to this point we had a really simple way of resolving customer problems – we fixed them. Companies our size can and do do that. We don’t want customers to be unhappy about anything we do so if there’s a problem we just fix it. If there’s something we can’t just fix – I can’t think of many – there’s a dispute resolution process that finishes with an independent arbitration by an ombudsman. In 14 years of service it’s never been necessary for a customer to use this service, because, as I said, we just fix the customer’s problem.

Oh well, Ofcom knows best.

Ofcom’s CLI guidance

Complaints Handling (from p36)

Copyright 2004 - 2019, iNet Telecoms® Ltd All rights reserved.