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Suggestion: Expanded support for Bell/Intercom solutions

Oct 29, 2010 01:44 AM PDT
Matt Ross (gone-ef)
Ephrata School District
Shoretel does just about everything, but I am interested in the
system doing one more thing for me: School Bells. What Shoretel
currently can do: 1. It can use an IP phone as an intercom or
paging zone. This feature is very effective, especially on
compatible IP phones. 2. Shoretel has an addressable audio-out for
overhead paging. This is what I wish it could do: 1. Shoretel
should be able to expand on the number of audio out ports available
to each site. There are, speciffically, 2 sites I need to have a
large number of speakers hooked up to: The Outdoor Horns and the
Indoor hallways. With only one external audio out, I must combine
the two and cannot use them separately. 2. The Intercom system
announces an intercom call with a tone. When using this system to
push a bell to a page group, I would like there to be no tone, as
the bell system should produce its' own tone. 3. While the Shoretel
IP phones make acceptable paging zone receptors, an overhead
speaker would be preferred. I have had users move their IP phones
without my knowledge, and then been unable to page effectively. I
know that there are 3rd party SIP overhead speakers that can do
this, but a Shoretel branded solution is preferred. Also, the
ability to use existing analog overhead speakers would be a huge
cost savings vs wiring new IP based speakers. The ability to use an
analog output will also allow for paging in areas too large for a
standard IP phone to handle, like a large gym or commons. This idea
may mesh well with request 1 above. 4. Here I'm unsure if Shoretel
already does this: If a user sets his speaker volume on his phone
low, will a page/intercom come through at that low volume? What if
I do not wish the user to adjust the volume of a page/intercom, but
want them able to adjust the speaker volume in other instances? 5.
Introduce bells as an actual feature, with scheduling and an easy
interface on the web. Please allow it to have several programable
schedules and flexible programing (I have different bells ringing
at different days of the week). Please allow users access to this
bell schedule as a separate permission from the other functions of
Shoretel's management. (I want a user to modify bells as needed,
but not to modify the phones.) Please allow importable bell tones
to be uploaded to the system, as I have requests for 'warning
bells' as well as 'change of period' bells with distinctly
different sounds. If this system is introduced, I imagine new
hardware would be beneficial. For example, a 'Analog Bell/Paging
Switch' would effectively take care of wishes 1, 3 & 4 above.
Having separate hardware also allow the solution to be sold as
'Intercom only', allowing users who do not wish to replace their
existing phone system with Shoretel (Blasphemy, I know!) but are
interested in it's intercom could do so if they choose. Other
hardware ideas: A Shoretel 'Paging/Intercom Only Speaker' that is
PoE or DC powered, and only has Intercom/Paging features. I would
make this model celling/wall mountable, as well as able to sit
nicely on a desk or table. This would be useful with remote areas
that are nowhere near the analog wiring, such as a remote
classroom. Thanks for making an awesome phone system. I hope to
make it my intercom/bell system soon. --Matt Ross
Oct 28, 2010 06:42 PM PDT
Matt Ross (gone-ef)
Ephrata School District
I am using Chrome on Mac OS X. It does have Javascript enabled... but it is probably a non-tested configuration for this forum software.

Should I re-post this, or is it readable enough? I'll only re-post if somebody asks me to. Otherwise, this will have to do. Sm:)e.
Oct 28, 2010 06:44 PM PDT
Matt Ross (gone-ef)
Ephrata School District
Or, I guess some kind admin could just edit my post, breaking it up into paragraphs as I intended.
Oct 29, 2010 01:45 AM PDT
Matt Ross (gone-ef)
Ephrata School District
Gah! Why didn't it keep my formatting! Oh well.
Oct 29, 2010 05:09 AM PDT
Amanda Fagan
NB Test and Measurement
It does that when you don't have JavaScript turned on in your browser.
Dec 07, 2010 11:23 PM PST
Tim Zarkovacki
Business Communication Specialists
Matt this is really interesting! We have just implemented a customization like this for a 30 site school. It uses the IP Phones to play a custom tone on a schedule. The school admin's setup the grouping of phones and can adjust the timing and grouping of phones to play the tones. I would be happy to discuss with you how we did you. Feel free to contact me (330) 335-7271 ask for Tim.

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