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Catching up with Irv Shapiro

For some time now I’ve been watching a steady stream of press releases come through my mailbox from IfByPhone.  A new iPhone app, a store locator, and a virtual call center have all been announced in the last few weeks. There’s a constant hum of activity coming from these folks.

So I chatted with CEO Irv Shapiro late last week to find out what all the excitement was about, and I loved what I heard.  IfByPhone’s philosophy is that building telephony applications should be no more difficult than building web applications.  Their business is about enabling businesses with creative and useful additions to businesses web sites (like the Store Locator) that any web developer can deploy.

imageAnd what about that iPhone application?  Called Voice Broadcast, it allows users to send a recorded phone message to a group of people at a specific time.  For example, a manager needing to travel early in the morning could record a message to his or her team, that would be delivered during the day.  According to Shapiro, Voice Broadcast was intended to be a technology demonstration.  Even so, thousands have downloaded it from the Apple store, and more than 1,000 people have signed up for IfByPhone’s commercial service as a result.

Looking for creative and advanced voice applications?  Perhaps checking out IfByPhone would be a smart place to start.

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