Internet Telephony Conference and Expo, Los Angeles
Selected vendor-announcement highlights from the fall show.
The eighteenth Internet Telephony Conference and Expoco-located with the Call Center 2.0 Conference, both hosted by Technology Marketing Corporationopened at the Los Angeles Convention Center this week, proving that some parts of the world economy are still doing quite well. TCM anticipated that over 7,000 attendees would cross the threshold by the time the show closed later today. Those that stick around until the lights are turned out have a chance to win a new Toyota Prius, a big improvement on the typical pens, notepads and t-shirts that most attendees pack in their bags to take home.
Over 150 vendors were on hand to pitch their latest and greatest products and services. Notable enterprise VoIP announcements included:
Aastra Telecom unveiled two new products plus free hosting services. The products include the Aastra MBU 400, a multi-handset DECT mobility solution aimed at the small and medium-size business market. (DECT stands for digital enhanced cordless telecommunications, an international standard technology that allows for automatic, seamless and secure handover between base stations. DECT 6.0 is the North-American version of DECT technology, recently approved by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and operating in the 1920-1930 MHz frequency band.) The Aastra MBU 400 comes with a DECT 6.0 gateway, and will be available in early November. Upgrades to the AastraLink Pro 160 IP Key System were announced, including simplified SIP trunk dialing options, meet-me conferencing, and integration with the MBU 400. The firm also announced myAastra, an evolving set of free hosted services and applications that are available on Aastra SIP phones.
Acme Packet discussed its new Net-Net 4500 Session Border Controller, which they claim increases performance and capacity by 100 percent in session border controller (SBC), multi-service security gateway (MSG), and session routing proxy (SRP) product configurations. The Net-Net 4500 satisfies service provider, large enterprise, and contact center requirements at both the network access and interconnect border points. The product has a media capacity of up to 64,000 SBC sessions, supporting next-generation services and applications, such as interactive video, that generate more media flows per session. As an SRP, it supports 2 million local routing rules, which can reduce the number of routing elements required in many networks, thus reducing complexity and cost. When operating as an MSG, the system supports 512,000 IPsec tunnels for backhauling SIP or GSM traffic over untrusted networks.
ClearOne demonstrated the MAX IP Response Point, the first conference phone for the Microsoft Response Point phone system. Response Point is a small-business IP-based phone system that supports both voice over IP (VoIP) and traditional analog telephone technology, and includes a voice-activated user interface. The MAX IP Response Point is a tabletop conferencing system that includes Distributed Echo Cancellation, noise reduction, adaptive modeling, first-microphone priority, ClearEffect, and true full-duplex audio. ClearOne claims this is the only conference phone on the market that works with all three Response Point hardware systems: those from Aastra, D-Link, and Syspine.
Fonality enhanced its HUD (Heads Up Display) system, a unified communication interface for its PBXtra IP PBX, which is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. HUD integrates SMS, instant messaging, landline calling, mobile calling, chat, voicemail, e-mail, conferencing, and call recording into a single user interface. The system comprises a dashboard that shows who is available, both onsite and remotely, eliminating wasted time created by busy signals, voicemails and phone tag. The new Version 3 includes Google Talk integration, which opens up the HUD chat feature for instant communication beyond the network of PBXtra users. Google Talk IM can be downloaded to any computer, BlackBerry, or iPhone, allowing users to interchange e-mail and chat contacts, and see who is online and available for calls and messaging. Google integration enables user of HUD 3 to communicate and stay connected with over five million Google Talk users today.
SIP Print announced the introduction of the SIP Print family of call recording appliances. According to the company, many organizations have lacked access to affordable system-level SIP call recording capabilities despite their growing need to record phone conversations for purposes of training, quality assurance, customer satisfaction monitoring, and legal/compliance requirements, such as Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA). SIP Print is an affordable appliance that offers pure system-level SIP voice recording for SMBs and larger organizations with a need to record up to 200 seats per location. Because it supports SIP at the communications-system level, SIP Prints patent-pending platform can also record advanced functions like voicemail or "follow-me" calls forwarded to mobile phones or off-premise phone numbers, ensuring endpoint accessibility.
VoIP Logic rolled out the CDR Manager, a call detail recording management module for its Cortex OSS VoIP platform middleware. The system is the latest module in their product line, and is designed to provide integration between telecommunications systems and the monitoring and network management tools that carriers and service providers require to run those networks. The CDR Manager provides raw data on recent system usage, call durations, reports, and statistics.
Copyright Acknowledgement: © 2008 DigiNet Corporation®, All Rights Reserved
Mark A. Miller, P.E. is President of DigiNet Corporation®, a Denver-based consulting engineering firm. He is the author of many books on networking technologies, including Voice over IP Technologies, and Internet Technologies Handbook, both published by John Wiley & Sons.