This is the first article in a series called: “Faxing and the future of reliable electronic communications”. The entire series is about 3 simple things:
- what faxing is and why it is still being used
- Fax deployment and integration
- FoIP and the future of green computing: why, how and how much?
So let’s talk about faxing and the reasons why it is still being widely used. Davidson Consulting estimates a total market of $ 1.6 billion in 2013 and a $ 450 mil for FoIP servers. The entire fax market is supposed to grow at a 12% CAGR. The yearly traffic is approximated at 100 billions faxes (sent and received)
So why isn’t faxing dead yet? Well, there are 3 main reasons:
- It is still the simplest and most secure way to transmit official documents: bills, invoices, contracts
- A very efficient real time communications solution (confirmations are available)
- There are multiple development trajectories that enhance profitability and feasibility: FoIP, MFP & VoIP Integration
We will discuss each of these reasons in detail in further articles. We will also discuss about the differences and advantages/disadvantages between fax machines and fax servers.
It is also important to understand for which industries, the faxing solutions are vital and why. We included here: the financial services industry, the health industry (with pharmaceutical services included), the legal services industry and the government services. I would further include: the transportation and logistics industry and the second hand automotive dealers.
The next important aspect about fax applications is the way it is being deployed and integrated with day to day business used applications. It is very important to understand how to integrate fax applications with:
· Document management systems: Windows Server, SharePoint, Document indexation and searching applications
· Email solutions: SMTP Servers, Email clients
It is well known that document management systems – like SharePoint are critical in daily document sharing, storing and backing-up of important company’s documents. Hence, when choosing a fax server it is important to make sure that there are such SharePoint connectors available and that there is a document searching/indexing engine for the stored documents.
The third line discussed in these series of articles is about future developments. This includes a detailed description of FoIP, VoIP &MFP integration and I will also present some innovative applications and hardware devices that, in correlation with fax servers and email applications will yield to an improved efficiency and cost savings. I think this is especially important in this period of rough economic situation.
If you are already aware of these concepts, you can read further the following documents:
1. Digital Faxing Savings
2. FoIP example with Lancom and Visendo
Also Visit Visendo Fax Suite for further details and features of the fax server applications.