Unified messaging

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Unified messaging refers to a process of bringing incoming and outgoing messages (e.g. voice mail, e-mail, fax, SMS, MMS etc.) into a uniform form and giving the user access via various access clients to grant this (landline or mobile phone, e-mail client).

These are services that are configured in a proprietary manner by the respective providers.


In the first step, incoming messages and information are digitized , if necessary . Text recognition is used for this for printed information . Faxes are usually received directly by a fax server and stored digitally or processed with OCR and forwarded as text ( Fax2mail ). Voice messages (e.g. from the answering machine ) are converted into sound files and text files.

The messages prepared in this way are sent to the relevant employee in a standardized form (= Unified Messaging ). transmitted.

It is currently common practice to send the various documents to the employee by electronic mail or to store them in a process-related database and to grant the employee access to the documents via a uniform user interface .

It is also possible to have the message read aloud from the computer or the Audiotex system via remote access.


The aim is to have all messages, data and documents relating to certain processes in one place in a technically semi-uniform form, comprehensible and accessible at any time.

A fundamental distinction must be made between UM solutions for private use and commercial use. The latter can be used to improve the workflow u. a. Integrate into CRM and ERP systems (e.g. SAP ) as well as Exchange , Lotus Notes , GroupWise or similar.


The depth and quality of the information provided by the provider about the features offered leaves a lot to be desired.

Concepts for the presentation of information on the medium of the current choice independent of the chosen form of the creator and independent of the transmission channel are helpful. The actual real benefit arises from two characteristics for personal administration of the messages:

  • possible uniform archiving with tailored, selected formats
  • possible simple export to a currently selected receiving database

with the following constraints, if possible according to criteria ISO / IEC 15408:

  • Uniform access rules for technically obstacle-free but information-safe access regardless of the selected channel
  • strong protection mechanisms against any unauthorized access by third parties regardless of the selected channel

Examples are known in which Unified Messaging creates new vulnerabilities.

A technical standardization of the offers has not yet been identified.

UM numbers in Germany

In nationwide offered UM services of the local network reference of geographical subscriber numbers in Germany which is due to the intensified enforcement Agency , the use of geographic landline numbers as virtual UM voicemail / fax numbers only with existing residence or registered office of the UM clients in each local network allows. Since a complex address data verification of the customers would be in accordance with the public procurement directives of BNetzA necessary for the continued use of geographical numbers and costly number blocks are required in all 5200 local networks would have to waive UM providers to further use of geographic numbers and awarded instead non-geographical national 032-subscriber numbers to their customers.


  • Walter Gora, Stefanie Röttger-Gerigk (Ed.): Handbook Mobile Commerce. Springer Verlag, Berlin / Heidelberg 2002, ISBN 3-642-62723-4 .
  • John Alexander, Anne Smith: Cisco CallManager Fundamentals . Cisco Press, Indianapolis 2004, ISBN 1-58705-008-0 .
  • Klaus Irmscher, Klaus Fähnrich (Hrsg.): Communication in distributed systems (KiVS). Springer, Berlin et al. 2003, ISBN 3-540-00365-7 .
  • Wayne Laws: Cisco AVVID and IP Telephony Design and Implementation . Syngress Publishing, Rockland 2001, ISBN 1-928994-83-0 .
  • Bernd W. Wirtz: Gabler Compact Lexicon eBusiness . Publishing house Dr. Th. Gabler, Wiesbaden 2002, ISBN 3-409-11800-4 .

Individual evidence

  1. heise online: Cisco's Security Agent endangers system availability from October 26, 2006.