The new call center software is designed to allow service representatives to initiate remote desktop sessions with customers; it gives the reps the ability to try to resolve problems by accessing customer PCs through a secure connection.
For example, users can now see the progress of a restore at the file level. In the past, Friend said, users could track the progress of an overall restore via a thermometer-style meter, but they couldn't tell which files had been restored at any given point.
Friend said Carbonite plans to round out its mobile access product line later this year. Carbonite currently offers a smartphone application for iPhones and BlackBerries. That application allows a user to access files backed up to the Carbonite service. Once the Carbonite screen is up, it's possible to access any computer being backed up, view any files and forward it via e-mail.
Molly Thompson, a Carbonite user who lives in Anchorage, Alaska, used the service to restore her Toshiba laptop, which had problems last April. "The recovery process was very easy. I just clicked Recover and it just took a while. It took five days. The connection I had at the time was less than 1MB/sec.," she said.
Thompson said the customer service was "wonderful," but noted that she'd like the process to be more automated so she wouldn't have to right-click her mouse to choose files to be backed up. "The PC interface is also not as much a favorite of mine as my iPhone interface. I use my iPhone interface much more frequently than the one on my laptop."
Friend said Carbonite addressed user concerns like Thompson's with a redesigned user interface for its InfoCenter feature. InfoCenter is the tool that communicates backup and restore status, scheduling options and customer service information.
"We think from a user standpoint this is a pretty huge improvement from what we had before," Friend said.
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