ORECX CALL RECORDING BLOG

Are you Call Recording or Call Analyzing?

Posted by Kevin Levi on Jun 22, 2022 9:28:02 AM

For years, companies have been recording customer calls for quality assurance, compliance and risk mitigation. For those purposes, standard call recording solutions work fine. But, when you want to start analyzing your calls for customer insight like buying patterns, traditional call recording solutions don't always serve you the best.

Screenshot 2022-06-22 091951

For call analysis, you require certain elements in a call recording system that not all recorders have. These include:

  • Dual channel audio capture - Recording the agent and the customer on separate, distinct channels so the parties can be isolated upon playback to clearly hear what each person said. Mono, or single-channel recorders, make it impossible to distinguish what was said during overtalk.
  • High fidelity audio recording - Many call recorders capture audio using lower quality, low bit rate codecs. You want your calls recorded using high fidelity, wideband, high bit rate codecs like Opus. Opus is distinguished from most high-quality formats (e.g.: Vorbis, AAC, MP3) by having low delay (5 ~ 66.5 ms). It is unique from most low delay formats (e.g. Speex, G.711, GSM) by supporting high audio quality (narrow-band all the way to full-band audio). It meets or exceeds existing codecs' quality across a wide range of bitrates, and it operates at a lower delay than virtually any existing compressed format.
  • Cost-free, immediate access to your recordings - Many call recording vendors charge money for you to export your call recordings to a third party analytics solution. These same companies also take time to grant you that access. In a world of immediacy, you can't afford to wait or have to pay to access your own audio data. You want to be able to export your calls freely and immediately, without any extra charge.
  • Third party data interoperability - To gain the most telling customer insight from your recordings, you want to be able to easily combine your captured audio metadata with other third party data sources such as CRM, ACD and customer service solutions. This greatly enhances the value of your recorded calls and provides richer, more telling buyer intelligence. Most call recording systems don't enable you to easily combine such data. You want a recorder that has a REST API to make this process seamless and fast.

You see, when you evolve past the point of mere call recording and want to start call analyzing, you need to assess your current call recording solution to ensure it has the capabilities you need to do it successfully and immediately.

5 Benefits of Dual Channel Audio Recording

This Call May Be Transcribed for Quality Assurance

Posted by Kevin Levi on May 25, 2022 10:29:56 AM

In many organizations, call recording is a means to an end. That is, upon audio capture, recorded calls are then transcribed and mined for meaningful keywords and phrases like "mad", "unhappy", or "cancel". Conversational analytics engines automatically identify these words and can alert managers, team leaders and/or quality evaluators who can use those relevant sections of an interaction to better coach underperforming agents. Untitled Design (1)

The accuracy of that analytics process not only comes down to the quality of the analytics software but also the audio that is transcribed. In fact, the transcription stage of a recorded call's life can go one of two ways, depending on the quality of the audio itself:

1. Spoken words are clearly identified and discerned from each party (e.g., customer and agent)

This happens when the recording system distinctly captures and replays both parties on the call on separate recording channels. Rather than mono audio capture, these solutions isolate each voice, enabling transcription engines to very clearly detect each voice in an isolated manner. This separation leads to significantly higher transcription accuracy and minimizes erroneous results with can mislead and waste time.

2. Spoken words are jumbled and misidentified 

This occurs often when single channel, mono recording solutions are utilized, which capture both parties on the call on the same recording channel. We all know customer service calls can become contentious, and overtalk does occur. When this happens, the transcription engine has trouble discerning what each individual said. 

Speech recognition/transcription software works by breaking down recorded audio into individual sounds. It then analyzes each sound, using custom algorithms to identify the most likely word fit. Once determined, those sounds are transcribed into text.

"Converting speech to text works through a complex machine learning model that involves several steps. Let's take a closer look at how this works:

  1. When sounds come out of someone's mouth to create words, it also makes a series of vibrations. Speech to text technology works by picking up on these vibrations and translating them into a digital language through an analog to digital converter.
  2. The analog-to-digital-converter takes sounds from an audio file, measures the waves in great detail, and filters them to distinguish the relevant sounds.
  3. The sounds are then segmented into hundredths or thousandths of seconds and are then matched to phonemes. A phoneme is a unit of sound that distinguishes one word from another in any given language. For example, there are approximately 40 phonemes in the English language.
  4. The phonemes are then run through a network via a mathematical model that compares them to well-known sentences, words, and phrases.
  5. The text is then presented as text, or a computer-based demand based on the audio’s most likely version."

Let's look at an excerpt of a customer service interaction from the two perspectives:

A. Dual channel recording - 

Agent - Sorry sir, we cannot issue a refund for this. I wish we could.

Customer - This is crap! I'm going to cancel my account and go somewhere else unless you put me on with a supervisor right now who can make this happen for me.

B. Mono recording - 

Agent/Customer - Sorry sir, we cannot issue a refundcancelmy andacccount i wishunlessthisyoucrap for thisunlessyouwishisupervisor right now.

This simple, imaginary example shows how important dual channel recording can be to a business. In the dual channel instance, the transcription software will clearly translate what was spoken into words and the appropriate action can be taken to rescue the disgruntled customer.

With the mono recording/overtalk scenario, the resulting transcription will be flawed. There is no way for the speech-to-text engine to discern what was said during the portions of the call when both the agent and the customer spoke simultaneously. This can result in a lost customer.  This highly problematic as it can cost upwards of 15X more to acquire a new customer than keep an existing one.

Many call recording systems only offer mono recording. Is your call recorder dual channel or mono? If it's mono, give our dual channel/stereo recording solution a try for 30 days at no cost.

Free 30-day Call Recording Trial

 

Why Audio Capture Vendors Hold your Call Recordings Hostage

Posted by Kevin Levi on May 17, 2022 11:34:01 AM

Did you know that many call recording solutions charge a substantial fee to access your own recorded audio data? It's true, even after you've already paid for their software. If you think this doesn't make sense, it doesn't. It's similar to going to McDonald's and paying for a Happy Meal, but before they give it to you, they charge you again.

So why does this happen? Well, it's due to a few reasons:

Untitled Design (4)
  1. Many call recording software vendors are greedy
  2. Some vendors claim it is complicated and time consuming to export your recordings in a playable, industry standard format - which it shouldn't be!
  3. Other vendors feel the need to involve their professional services team to grant you access to your own recorded calls - this shouldn't be necessary

If you think these reasons are ridiculous, you're right! They are. Once you pay for a solution to record your customer calls, you shouldn't be charged extra to access your calls. First off, many of these same recording solutions are expensive to begin with, only to then charge you additionally for something that is already yours.

When this happens, a couple things occur:

1. You must lay out more money for something you already paid for

2. There is an unnecessary delay (days or even weeks) in accessing your recordings. This lag can cause you to lose dissatisfied customers to your competitors as well as incur costly compliance issues, because this process also delays your ability to send the recorded audio to your conversational analytics solution. Once this finally happens, you can unearth some rich customer insights that could have led to rescuing dissatisfied customers, thwarting expensive compliance infractions, mitigating costly disputes, etc. 

With all this being said, you want a recording/audio capture solution that offers unbridled access to your own recorded data (in a standard exportable format) at no extra charge. You also want the ability to collect non-audio data from CRM, ACD or agent desktop applications via a REST API, which can then be appended to audio recordings. This improves your ability to correlate, discover patterns and pinpoint specific types of interactions. Most audio capture solutions do not offer this level of openness. 

If your recording vendor charges you for access to your recordings, it may be time to look elsewhere. You don't have to be in that position.

Untitled Design

 

Mono Recordings Lead to Flawed or Incomplete Analytics

Posted by Kevin Levi on May 6, 2022 10:45:24 AM

Call recorders serve many functions, and one of their most valuable is the ability to feed recorded audio to transcription and conversational analytics engines to distill customer insights that move the needle on performance and revenue. These engines holey rely on the recorded audio file from the customer conversation to operate. With jumbled audio or two individuals speaking over one another, the resulting analytics will be flawed, at best. speech to text rates

The chart above shows that for every 1,000 words of transcribed text, you could have at least 180 incorrectly transcribed words without the phonetic clarity of high fidelity, dual channel recording.

The deficiency of most recorders/analytics solutions today is the quality of that recorded audio and its portability from the recorder to the transcription/analytics engine. Many combined solutions rely on less-than-crystal-clear audio to transcribe calls and identify phonetic patterns. In fact, the use of a dual-channel/stereo recording solution (versus single channel mono) can improve transcription accuracy 15%-40%. Unfortunately, about 90% of call recorders use mono audio capture. Do you know if your recorder has stereo or mono? You should check.

Untitled Design

 

 

Call Recorder or Recording Engine? Which do you Need?

Posted by Kevin Levi on Mar 14, 2022 11:19:10 AM

It's like the chicken and the egg - which came first: the call recorder or the recording engine? Honestly, it doesn't matter because they are not necessarily inextricably linked, as they serve to very different use cases.Untitled Design - 2022-03-14T094148.701

A call recorder is a piece of software (or hardware and software) that captures customer calls and stores them for later replay. Most recorders have a dynamic user interface to enable multi-criteria searching to quickly locate the calls you need most for compliance, dispute resolution, quality assurance, etc.

A recording engine is quite different, although you may not initially think so. Yes, a call recorder has a recording engine within it, but we aren't looking at it that way right now. For this post, we are viewing a recording engine as a distinct piece of software that captures recorded calls and sends them directly to a transcription engine, which then sends the transcribed text on to a speech analytics engine - all of which can take place in fractions of milliseconds. These solutions power real-time analytics which can identify at-risk customers before they leave, uncover compliance infractions while the agent is still on the phone, enable automated QA and so on. 

You see, one (a recorder) serves as a capture/playback device to store and replay the interactions themselves for various business purposes. The other (a recording engine) serves as a capture/streaming device, which feeds speech analytics for keyword/phrase spotting. This enables automated QA and other real-time functions (such as identifying at-risk customers or agent compliance infractions) that can drive real intraday advantages and risk mitigation.   

An important component to consider here is real-time vs. post-call in terms of how calls are handled and utilized. Real-time audio capture arms your business with some advanced capabilities that provide significant and immediate business value (e.g. rescuing customers considering defection, interceding a failing sales call to save the sale, and many more). Post-call audio capture also provides substantial value but in a less immediate manner (e.g. agent-supervisor call review, evidence for dispute resolution, and countless others).  

Questions to Ask

The question now is, which one do you need/want for your organization? The long answer is...Most large organizations have both to serve the two unique use cases. Some smaller organizations, on the other hand, choose to forego the primary call recorder altogether as they rely on the scaled-down recording functionality embedded within their telephony system. If they are satisfied with its capabilities, they may opt for a recording engine alone to power their speech analytics. 

The short answer is...You should have both. That is the best way to satisfy both use cases. 

Here are some questions to ask yourself to help you determine which is the best route for your organization:

1. How do you plan/want to leverage your customer calls?

  • Real time, automated QA - recording engine
  • Real time customer rescue - recording engine
  • Real time compliance assurance - recording engine
  • Real time order verification - recording engine
  • Post-call QA - recorder
  • Post-call customer win-back - recorder
  • Post-call compliance verification/proof - recorder
  • Post-call dispute resolution - recorder
  • Post-call order verification - recorder

2. How concerned are you about intraday performance improvements?

  • Very concerned - recording engine
  • Not overly concerned - recorder

3. Do you plan to store your recorded customer interactions?

  • Yes - recorder
  • No - recording engine

Take a few minutes to think through these questions and determine where your organization stands (or wants to stand) in terms of recorder vs. recording engine use cases. Your compliance, performance and risk management efforts may depend upon it. 

Audio Capture vs. Call Recording Infographic

 

 

Post-Call Vs. Real-Time Audio Capture

Posted by Kevin Levi on Mar 3, 2022 10:03:13 AM

Call recording provides a wealth of opportunity for businesses, most notably for agent performance management, quality assurance, customer intelligence, compliance, and risk mitigation. Recorded audio can be mined to distill critical insight which empowers each of these areas. A recorded interaction of both voice and screen, for example, can uncover workflow breakdowns that cause longer average handle times (AHT). Another recording might show an agent who is not properly complying with government regulations like GDPR, TSR, PCI, etc. Yet another could uncover important competitor information that could impact sales/marketing campaigns. Untitled Design - 2022-03-03T100026.848

All these benefits come from recorded conversations. However, like just about everything in business, timing is everything. Some of these insights are most valuable when discovered as the call unfolds. If a customer is indicating defection behavior, it can be too late to save the customer after the call ends. Likewise, a potentially costly dispute needs to be dealt with right away. 

As such, there are two types of call recording/audio capture methodologies to consider:

Real-time audio capture - Live audio streaming is captured as the conversation takes place in real time. When a speech analytics solution is also deployed, the recorded audio is streamed right to the transcription and analytics engines to distill critical insight as the conversation unfolds. Triggers can be set to alert supervisors immediately when a compliance infraction occurs or when a customer utters the words "cancel" or "unhappy", for instance. The proper mitigation/action can then take place while the call is still live.

Post-call audio capture - Some insights aren't as time sensitive as others, yet they still provide ample value after the call has concluded. These areas can include the discovery of product update recommendations, for example, or information about a competitor, or even evidence to settle a discrepancy with a customer. Some evidence can even be used in court. Still invaluable to a business, these insights can be gleaned after the conversation ends and still provide supervisors and management with actionable intelligence they can use to make improvements and mitigate risk. 

Do you Need Real-Time or Post-Call?

Real-time audio capture is only valuable if someone or something (transcription and speech analytics, e.g.) is listening as the call takes place. Otherwise, post-call recording will suffice, as you wouldn't be taking full advantage of its real-time, immediate value. 

Here are a couple key questions to ask yourself to determine which recording solution makes the most sense for your business:

1. Which of the following areas are most important to your contact center right now?

  • Customer defection (real-time recording is best)
  • Agent performance management (post-call recording will suffice, but real-time recording enables supervisors to make corrections immediately)
  • Product insight (post-call recording will suffice)
  • Regulatory compliance (post-call recording will suffice, but real-time recording enables supervisors to make corrections immediately)
  • Dispute resolution (post-call recording will suffice, but real-time recording enables supervisors to make corrections immediately)

2. Do you have speech analytics installed or are you planning to deploy it?

Real-time streaming audio recording can feed a speech analytics engine as the call unfolds and provide invaluable insight that can be used immediately to drive service improvements, save a defecting customer, or mitigate dispute or compliance risk, for instance. AI-powered analytics can automatically score your calls and identify the most impactful insight for immediate business improvement. Furthermore, with real-time recording and speech analytics, you can trigger immediate attention and next-best action based on the most impactful customer indicators with automatic data-driven intelligence. 

 

AI-driven real-time analytics is revolutionizing how customer service organizations operate today, and it is all driven by real-time audio capture. Is it time for you to invest in real-time recording?

 

Audio Capture vs. Call Recording Infographic

 

 

 

 

 

Audio Capture Powers Automated QA & Real-Time Agent Guidance

Posted by Kevin Levi on Jan 27, 2022 11:14:50 AM

Contact centers and enterprises can interact and collaborate with recorded audio and associated meta data in a host of ways through real-time audio capture. 

Some of those ways include:

  • Automated QA - Organizations can now capture and automatically analyze (with the addition of AI and speech analytics) all their agent calls rather than a mere sampling, without adding more supervisors and quality evaluators. Almost instantly, contact centers can now glean the quality assurance insights they need from every customer interaction rather than a mere 5% sampling. Samplings only provide surface-level insights based on educated extrapolations of a small call set. Recording 100% of interactions provides deeper, more telling and accurately representative QA insights the organization can use to improve customer service, enhance workflows and increase sales conversion.Untitled Design (86)-2
  • Real-Time Agent Guidance - Audio streaming software can feed recorded audio data right to a speech analytics engine which can tag and analyze the data to add meaning and structure. With this structured data, the solution can provide real-time automated agent guidance to support the interaction as it unfolds. 
  • Real-Time Risk Management - Streaming audio can be shared instantly with AI and speech analytics systems to anticipate potential disputes before they occur. Supervisors can then intervene live to stave off any issues. Likewise, the system can automatically provide script guidance to the agent to further mitigate potential problems.  

"We've seen some interesting use cases," said Steve Kaiser, GM of the OrecX business at CallMiner, "where customers collaborate on the audio data by sharing it and passing it back and forth between various systems to augment and add value to it. It's like wow! The light bulb goes off for these individual companies, and they realize they can do things they never imagined they could do before."

 

 

GoodFirms Accredits OrecX as the Best Call Center Software - 2021

Posted by Kevin Levi on Jan 20, 2022 8:36:19 AM

Final article image

By Lisa Brian, GoodFirms Writer

Oreka GPL, the best-in-class open-source call center solution, is acknowledged by GoodFirms as the best Call Center Software.

GoodFirms is one of the most prestigious research, review, and listing platforms delivering high-quality services, enabling businesses to make informed decisions. Our advanced research methodologies and insightful reviews instill trust among companies looking for the best services and products in different domains. Today, GoodFirms stands as an established, global B2B platform that brings thousands of service companies and products under one roof.


Why Is Oreka GPL the Best Call Center Software?


Oreka GPL, OrecX’s free open source recording software, is designed to meet the extensive operational needs of call center businesses of various sizes and types. This open source software can be easily customized and updated to serve as a future-ready solution. Launched in 2005, the solution currently caters to millions of customers in over 190 countries.


Evolved from an all-inclusive premise recorder, the Oreka recording solution platform works equally well in the cloud, premise, and hybrid environments. It offers a single or multi-tenant, feature-rich audio capture/voice recorder (Oreka TR) that can handle third-party carrier-based recording. The software also provides call management features like call logging, screen recording, quality monitoring and dual channel audio capture for speech analytics.


So-called Oreka AC (Audio Capture) augments existing legacy recording applications with real-time and/or post-call audio streaming. Additionally, the software feeds recording data to any third-party software that uses audio as a data source – such as voice analytics, biometrics, and customer service solutions. It is agile, scalable, and ensures a richer user experience at a nominal cost.


The Oreka platform provides its customers with multiple customer support plans to choose from. Standard support, included in the annual subscription, allows free version updates, unlimited support cases, and responsive customer support through phone, email, and chat. The extended support plan is available at additional cost for businesses that need quick, higher-level expert support. It enables standard support plan benefits, assured 4-hour response time, and live phone support during business hours.


Benefits of Using the Oreka Recording Platform


● Compatible with all environments, cloud, premise, and hybrid
● Latest design components
● Creates strategic, technical, economic and collaborate benefits for businesses
● Agile, scalable
● Enables real-time visibility, tracking, and storage of calls
● Streamlines and automates call management with time-saving and enhanced efficiency
● Provides detailed metrics for calls-per-day, call duration, active calls, the total number of recorded calls, and more
● Open source, modular system allows comprehensive customization to suit customer needs
● Seamless integration with any PBX switch or third-party system
● Responsive and reliable customer support via phone, chat, and email
● Supports easy scalability for business growth
● Affordable pricing
● Easy to install
● Quick return on investment (ROI)
● PCI/HIPAA compliant Modules of Oreka
● Open source recording, call recording, quality monitoring, cloud recording, screen recording, audio capture service and SIPREC recording.

Feature Highlights

● Capture and store calls
● Intuitive multi-criteria call search and playback
● On-demand recording and live monitoring
● Real-time dashboard to monitor call metrics
● Audit trail for compliance
● Auto tagging and notes
● White labeling for branding
● Multi-site recording
● Multi-tenancy for hosted
● Mobile phone recording
● Live monitoring
● Call exporting
● Auto-delete
● Selective recording
● Look-back call recording
● Fine-grained privileged access
● File management/archiving
● Filtering (IP-DID range)
● Extended codec support
● On-demand recording

 

Pricing of Oreka


Oreka actively serves the call recording and management requirements for call center businesses of all sizes, small, medium, and large. It offers a free voice recorder apart from multiple call management features at a nominal fee. Besides, it allows high-degree customization in features with flexibility in pricing. It enables businesses to select the level of customer support based on their budget. This configurable pricing model further helps restrict the costs of Oreka to almost half of other similar solutions. Moreover, the software also facilitates a free 30-day trial.


Performance Evaluation of Oreka by GoodFirms


GoodFirms is well known for recognizing and ranking service companies and products based on their capabilities, innovation, performance, and authentic user reviews. These rankings continue to be the most trusted, prestigious, and respected recognition worldwide in the B2B sector, acting as a well-founded ground for our users to make informed decisions. The listed companies constitute top performers in the market who have acquired a remarkable position by maintaining their quality and credibility.


After an extensive, systematic, and unbiased evaluation process, GoodFirms identified and ranked Oreka as the best Call Center Software on its platform for offering comprehensive call recording and management software tools, reasonable pricing with flexible features selection, unlimited free updates, and multiple reliable customer support packages for businesses.

 

About GoodFirms

GoodFirms is a Washington DC-based research and review platform for software and services. GoodFirms empowers companies to choose the best software from its curated list of industry-leading software in various categories to enhance profits and grow beyond imagination. It performs extensive research and analysis to evaluate and rank the listed software on critical parameters like features, uniqueness, ratings, and verified user reviews. This diligently curated ranking highlights the top performers for every software category and boosts the buying credibility of the software.


About the Author

Lisa Brian is presently working as a Content Writer with GoodFirms, a Washington DC-based B2B research company well-known for its research methodology and listings of 60k+ software and services. Lisa’s current role revolves around gathering information and crafting it in a meaningful form that businesses can leverage. She helps companies communicate their vision and mission through digital platforms. Lisa believes in developing a symbiotic business relationship where companies mutually support each other and grow together.

Call Recording Insights from Steve Kaiser

Posted by Kevin Levi on Jan 3, 2022 11:40:16 AM
audio snippets blog post thumnail

Steve Kaiser, former CEO of OrecX and now GM, OrecX Business Unit of CallMiner, recently participated in a CallMiner webinar. What follows are 5 audio snippets from that webinar in which he details the reasons for the CallMiner acquisition and discusses various aspects around modern and open audio capture.

Clip 1: Why OrecX joined CallMiner

Clip 2: Connecting and Enriching Audio Data

Clip 3: Securing your Audio Recordings

Clip 4: Maintaining Control of/Access to your Audio Data

Clip 5: 3 Most Important Points Regarding Audio Capture

Audio Capture vs. Call Recording Infographic

 

Topics: call recording open source

Recording VoIP Traffic via Port Mirroring Switch

Posted by Kevin Levi on Oct 27, 2021 9:17:43 AM

OrecX call recording software can easily record VoIP traffic once it's seen on the server interface. Small office users (under 100 seats) can use Port Mirroring Switch (SPAN, port spanning or port monitoring) to get the right traffic to the OrecX server simply and easily. This is best used in distributed office environments with many locations using port mirroring (and leveraging OrkUI) to manage and administrate from a single location. 


Small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) leverage OrecX via a port mirroring deployment model when the capture method is predetermined by their telephony architecture. SMBs utilizing Comcast Business VoiceEdge (BVE), in particular, often choose OrecX for port mirroring recording. 


Port Mirroring, also known as SPAN (Switched Port Analyzer), is a method of monitoring network traffic. With port mirroring enabled, the switch sends a copy of all network packets seen on one port (or an entire VLAN) to another port, where the packet can be analyzed.

Port Mirroring, which is supported in nearly all enterprise class switches (managed switches), allows other computers to see network traffic, which is not visible to them in general cases. Managed switches have a configuration interface (web-based or command-line console), which administrators may use to specify the source port(s) to be mirrored and the destination port, where a copy of all packets will be forwarded.

The pictures below illustrate how a port mirroring switch configuration works.

Four computers (A, B, C and D) are shown in Figure 1. They are connected to a general switch without port mirroring support. In Figure 2, they are connected to a managed switch with port mirroring support, while network traffic is sent between computers A and B (one portion of data is sent from A to B and another portion is sent in the reverse direction from B to A).

In Figure 1, you will see how a general unmanaged switch works. It forwards packets directly between ports, where computers A and B are connected. Other computers (C and D) do not see these packets.

In Figure 2, you see the same scenario but on the switch with port mirroring functionality. The network traffic is sent again between computers A and B. However, there is a computer D, which is listening (monitoring) to that traffic. Every packet, which is sent or received by computer A is duplicated (mirrored) to computer D port.

When configuring port mirroring on the switch, the "source monitoring port" is a port, where computer A is connected to, and the "destination analysis port" is a port, where computer D is connected to. Port mirroring switch images

How Port Mirroring function can be used for recording VoIP calls
OrecX leverages the port mirroring capability of a network switch to accomplish "unobtrusive" recording of VoIP calls. The switch forwards a copy of every network packet sent or received by IP phones to the OrecX server. The picture below illustrates how the network should be configured to allow for the recording of calls.

Port mirroring switch images2

List of Port Mirroring Switches

 

Topics: port mirroring

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