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Firm Adds Voice Commands for SD-WAN Management

Windstream Enterprise has added the ability to use voice commands with its software-defined wide-area networking (SD-WAN) offering.

The managed communications services provider based in Little Rock, Ark., now lets users interact with its SD-WAN Concierge solution with integration for Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa digital voice assistants.

Specifically, the feature provides:

  • SD-WAN Daily Summary: Provides site status, including the total number of disconnected, connected and impaired sites, as well as sites pending activation.
  • Ticket Summary: Presents a high-level readout of total open and recently updated tickets.
  • Ticket Activity: Delivers a more granular look at open tickets, including the ID number, opened date, trouble type and location for which the ticket was created.

That means users can now voice commands such as:

  • "Ok Google, Ask Windstream to get my SD-WAN overview"
  • "Alexa, Ask Windstream to get my ticket summary."

The company already provided such voice command functionality with its OfficeSuite UC unified communications product. It allows voice commands to listen to and manage voicemails, turn on/off do not disturb, twinning or set call forwarding.

Such functionality isn't exactly new, as Riverbed Technology way back in 2016 penned the post "Software-Defined Networking Using Simple Voice Commands," and Comcast offered similar abilities with its ActiveCore SDN solution last year, but it appears to be a rarity in the SD-WAN space.

"Digital voice assistants are becoming essential in everyday life, and use is increasing as work-from-home and hybrid working environments take hold; therefore, Windstream Enterprise is giving customers the same seamless, innovative and high-tech experience with their unified communications and SD-WAN management," said VP Mike Frane in a company news release. "Our philosophy is technology should make our customers' lives easier and more efficient. We're delivering on that goal by meeting our customers where they want to interact with us—on their portal, mobile device and now their digital assistant."

About the Author

David Ramel is an editor and writer for Converge360.

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