One of the major advantages of CTI Applications is availability of huge computation power of computer along with telecom functions. Many telephone systems like PBX or answering machines can also have some computational power using which some call routing or other smart features can be implemented. But they can not perform highly complicated logical decision which is easily possible by a CTI applications.
One such small but widely used in some specific areas function of any telephone system is Call Screening! Call screening can be defined as filtering of incoming or outgoing call based on the caller ID or dialed number.
In incoming scenario, CLI ( Caller Line Identification) can be used to either allow incoming call or block it. Apart from CLI, DNI ( Dialed Number Identification) can also be used to allow of block calls. This is very useful in PRI connectivity in India where one PRI is normally provided with 100 different numbers along with one vanity number, known as “pilot number”. This kind of DNI based call screening could be used for many purposes!
In outgoing call screening scenario, the call could be allowed using either dialed number or dialing extension or both. Very often, in a office with PBX systems, few extensions are provided with direct dial facility to dial out. This kind of system exists in hotels too where some rooms can make international calls while others not. Similar restrictions are used by telecom service providers too where some numbers do not have international calling facility!
All these are instances of “call screening” of various types. Almost all call screening facility described above can be implemented in a PBX. But CTI based call screening have advantages:-
1. It is not easy to edit or change the “call screening” condition while using PBX features.
2. Only trained PBX personal can program or make changes in “call screening” logic. Also they can only add new numbers or extensions.
3. CTI based “Call Screening” systems have simple GUI based options to edit, change in call screening logic which can be understood and operated by any one who knows how to use computer mouse and read English.
4. Complex logic or even dynamically changing parameters ( like time of the day) can be used for call blocking/unblocking function.
5. Large list of phone numbers can be used for checking call blocking/unblocking conditions. Present day NDNC ( National Do Not Call) registry is nothing but such a list.
CTI based Call Screening system can also be used to routing of calls intelligently. It can also store all records of any blocked or unblocked calls and present them in refined ways. It is easy to share such call reports and convert to different formats like Excel Sheet which is understood by all.
CTI based “Call Screening” could be used in jails too where inmates would be allowed to receive calls from specified number at specified time only. Similarly, inmate would be able to make calls to specified number once in a month. All these would happen automatically, without any human intervention with proper call report.
So, if you require any type of “call screening” system for your office, hotel or hostel, it is time to implement a CTI based call screening system!