8×8 has launched a new package of customer communication capabilities, which companies can now access from within Microsoft Teams.
Among other features, users of the new 8×8 XT offering may access business messaging, conversational AI, and advanced analytics applications.
Other prominent capabilities available within the bundle include:
- Interoperability between all 8×8 X Series features
- Direct Inward Dialing (DID) capabilities and flexible calling plans
- Purpose-built apps for Microsoft Teams devices and apps
- A custom-built direct routing solution
- Unlimited, metered, and prepaid calling options
The launch of 8×8 XT marks the next evolution of the 8×8 Voice for Microsoft Teams solution and seizes upon the trend of brands integrating CCaaS and UCaaS platforms.
Underlining this trend, Gartner recently predicted that 20 percent of Teams users will adopt telephony services for external Teams calling by 2024.
However, Microsoft does not yet boast the native CCaaS capabilities of stalwart vendors, such as 8×8. Indeed, as prominent industry analyst Zeus Karravala, Founder and Principal Analyst, ZK Research, recently told CX Today:
Teams is a really good chat product, it’s an okay meetings product, [but] the telephony is substandard, which is why so many UC partners have the Microsoft “operate and connect” type of offering where you can add telephony features.
While Microsoft has promised to “aggressively innovate” in the CCaaS space and – of course – has the resources to short-circuit the innovation curve through acquisition, many vendors are seizing the opportunity to fill the telephony gap.
8×8 XT is the latest example of this, and the provider is grabbing the bull by the horns, also releasing its 8×8 Microsoft Partner Program.
Members must be Microsoft Gold Partners to join the program to sell the new 8×8 XT solution. By signing up, they receive several perks, including volume-based rebates and incentives, access to executive forms, and “increased Microsoft partner profitability through incremental services.”
Brian Campbell, Director of Digital Experience, Collaboration, and Workspace at CDW – a member of the program – added:
We are excited to be among the select partners for the exclusive 8×8 Elevate MP program. Offering 8×8 Voice for Microsoft Teams enables us to deliver even more value to our Teams customers, while the new partner program provides the resources and benefits to maximize revenue opportunities.
Alongside its Microsoft partnerships, 8×8 has joined forces with Genesys to streamline customer and employee communication.
Such dealings support its XCaaS vision, which blurs the line between CCaaS and UCaaS, fostering next-generation collaboration to supercharge CX transformation.