NTware, the mostly-owned software subsidiary of Canon, has announced the release of a new version of uniFLOW. uniFLOW is a wide-ranging suite of apps, covering print accounting and business document workflows.
The biggest differences customers will notice are in the look and feel of most of the desktop clients. However, many components of the uniFLOW suite have been completely overhauled to improve technical efficiency (and thus capacity and speed) - hence it's a new version with a new name, not just an upgrade.
Improved Print Resilience
uniFLOW already provided resilience in print workflows in large organizations, which is to say, printjobs would be re-routed automatically in the event of technical problems such as network problems, or a print server crashing. NTware identified that some persisting issues were due to the use of third-party software in the mix. So they have now added features to uniFLOW to mean a company can use uniFLOW alone to handle all issues, an "end-to-end print resilience plan", which should reduce costs and ease support.
Print Accounting Reports
uniFLOW reports on print usage can run either automatically or upon demand, and these outputs are based on some standard reports. These have been overhauled, with two cool outcomes. First, they're more efficient in code terms, so they're faster. Second, they are all in SQL and now work the same way as Microsoft business intelligence tools do - so a company can integrate uniFLOW output in their BI reports, and vice versa.
uniFLOW Client Design
The client app for uniFLOW has been redesigned. The world moves very fast, system usage especially so - and users and managers demand cutting-edge intuitiveness and clarity. According to NTware, they now have it in uniFLOW. Help pages are now available in a single click. This cynical writer wonders how many clicks it used to take. Additional popups containing budget, cost centre and rerouting options will be very helpful.
Support for Canon imageFORMULA Desktop Scanner
This is not just about selling more scanners. These are small and realtively cheap desktop scanners, which could not be integrated into a full workflow hitherto. This should mean a wider uptake for document capture solutions, at least in the uniFLOW world, and will mean that users in small offices and workgroups can be more easily authenticated and totally integrated into complex business workflows.