Meru Partners with Juniper for wVoIP

Deal will bolster wireless VoIP deployment and add needed network security to the mix.

By Sean Michael Kerner | Posted Sep 2, 2005
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Juniper Networks and Meru Networks have entered into an agreement to co-market secure, pervasive wireless VoIP.

The partnership will combine Meru's Air Traffic Control technology with Juniper's IP routing and security offerings. Policy enforcement of network security with the combined solution will remain the same whether users are wired or wireless.

Tony Scarfo, Juniper's vice president of partner management told VoIPplanet.com that there are a range of applications and services that the company sees driving demand for Juniper's secure and assured solutions, and wVoIP is certainly one of them.

Security and consistency have been the major customer barriers to adoption of wVoIP according to Scarfo, issues that the combined solution will aim to address.

"From Juniper's perspective, the key issues around VoIP in general (including wireless VoIP) are security of the network and the ability to deliver consistent, high quality VoIP communications," Scarfo said. "We offer a range of security, quality, and reliability features on both our routing and our security portfolio that keep the network secure and help improve the reliability and quality of all VoIP services."

Meru also sees the Juniper partnership adding value to Meru's wVoIP solution, particularly in the area of network security.

"Wireless VOIP creates even greater end-to-end security requirements for the enterprise, as you have the prospect of an exponentially greater number of clients who can access the network," Ben Gibson Meru's vice president, marketing told VoIPplanet.com. "Partnering with an industry-leader in enterprise security helps address this customer requirement."

Gibson sees a particular strategic imperative for making the Juniper partnership at this time.

"We see 2005 as the year wireless VOIP moves from a speculative market opportunity to one that is rapidly emerging," Gibson said.

He went on to explain that a key development has been the large number of new WLAN-enabled voice devices and PDAs that have been released this year at increasing lower price points.

"We developed our partnership with Avaya as they are the industry leader in VOIP, and now Juniper as a strong player in enterprise security," Gibson said. "I believe Juniper is really going to make great strides and impact in the enterprise market in the years ahead, and of course this represents a great channel opportunity for Meru."

802.11e
Analyst firm Frost & Sullivan has argued that the ratification and adoption of the 802.11e standard is fundamental for wVoIP to be grow in the mainstream. Meru's Gibson agrees that 802.11e standardization will certainly boost the market for wireless VoIP.

"That said, we see the market already growing rapidly with WMM support," Gibson explained. "Our goal at Meru is to continue to ensure that our customers can scale their QoS support for voice. QoS needs to work when there are a heavy number of voice clients in one coverage zone."

Gibson noted that Meru is adding value on top of standards to ensure scalable QoS for voice.

wVoIP hits the mainstream
Gibson commented that Meru expect 2006 to be a very interesting and exciting year for wireless VoIP.

"Japan is already very interesting, as is the Nordic region. Verticals such as healthcare are very active already adopting this technology," Gibson said. "In 2006, we believe more and more CIOs will see the benefits of reducing their cost and getting their employees down to one number access."

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