A new product by 8x8 Inc., known as 8x8 connect, allows Facebook users to add a new “call me” button to their pages, letting other users call them without revealing their phone numbers. The application is particularly useful because it combines Facebook’s limited accessibility with VoIP calling capabilities, giving users the ability to make their numbers available to select, controlled groups in one simple step. According to 8x8 president Dan Weirich, “8x8 developed this technology for use within the 8x8 Virtual Office hosted PBX service and it was a very simple process to migrate it to Facebook”.
The process for using the app is simple: people trying to make a call merely enter the phone number they wish to place a call from and call that number. The application then automatically rings the target recipient from a preset second number. Om Malik, writes at GigaOm that “I think this app could be especially helpful for small business owners and consultants, who could use it as a way to generate interest in the products/services they’re selling”. The application also adds another crucial layer of security to personal internet-initiated interactions, as it allows users to make calls without revealing personal contact information.
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