Looking to capture a bigger slice of the lucrative market for small and medium-sized businesses, MySkypeOffice is rolling out a powerful desktop tool similar to Google Voice. MySkypeOffice, which is launching today in a free beta, offers a host of in-bound call management tools for businesses that rely on Skype as their phone system.
The features include the ability to dial by name or extension, and group users by department. MySkypeOffice can also route calls to any number, not just another Skype account, and can transcribe voicemails. Users can also record calls and use custom hold music for callers, and there’s the ability to screen voicemails as they come in and receive faxes. Users just need a Skype account.
As I said, there are a lot of Google Voice-like features in MySkypeOffice, which makes sense because the company behind it is a spinoff of PhoneFusion, which offers PhoneFusion One, a white-label call management system with similar features. PhoneFusion, if you recall, recently had its VisualVoicemail app pulled from Android Market for unknown reasons; Google is keeping mum about it. But the company is back on track having uploaded a new VisualVoicemail app to Android Market.
The work on PhoneFusion One and MySkypeOffice shows that the real business is in call management tools. I think MySkypeOffice is a good option for small businesses because it allows them to leverage Skype and tailor it to their needs. Skype has focused mostly on consumers and has made a more recent play for corporate customers. It has some modest management features, but not the complete suite of tools like MySkypeOffice. The market for small and medium-sized businesses is substantial, and with tools like MySkypeOffice, more businesses can turn to Skype as their phone system.
The service is available by invitation-only through myskypeoffice.com. It is scheduled for a full rollout in the second quarter.