XConnect to Offer Free Trial of HD Voice Peering Federation

First HD federation will provide scalable, end-to-end IP interconnection, using ENUM technology, to enable cross-network high-definition voice traffic between disparate networks.

By Ted Stevenson | Posted Jan 27, 2010
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London-based XConnect, a leading provider of IP telephony registry and interconnection services, recently announced it would conduct a trial of an IP peering federation specifically for service providers capable of offering high-definition voice services.

The trial, open to qualified operators, waives sign-up and monthly fees for its April-June duration. Multiple providers using the G.722 HD (wideband) codec will be able to test the interoperability, scalable interconnection, reliability, and support of XConnect federation services.

After a slow start (the technology has been available for several years) there has been a recent flurry of adoption of high-definition voice by fixed, mobile, and Web 2.0 telecom service providers.

Using wideband codecs, HD delivers a much richer audio experience than is possible over the PSTN, providing almost the clarity of face-to-face conversation.

However, such HD voice technology as has been implemented is, for the most part—as XConnect CEO Eli Katz told Enterprise VoIPplanet—"in small, isolated islands," since for HD to work across networks, the entire call path and the endpoints (phones) themselves must support high definition.

This interconnection trial is an attempt on the part of XConnect to begin "connecting up some of those islands," Katz said—to provide a simple way to address the significant challenges of meeting this end-to-end requirement.

"The mass-market adoption of high-definition voice—and other new IP—services demands trusted, scalable cross-network interconnection," Katz continued. "Service providers are eager for a solution. We look forward to working with the industry to help bring the benefits of HD voice to these operators and the consumer and enterprise markets they serve."

"Because voice is the most critical way that we communicate, the significantly improved sound quality of HD voice is an important step in making communication clearer and more effective," said Polycom co-founder and CTO Jeff Rodman, in a statement. "We’re pleased to support XConnect’s HD voice trial, and view it as an important step toward HD voice communication for everyone."

Trial participants will form a private peering community under the Private Alliance feature of XConnect’s 150-member Global Alliance, which combines ENUM-registry and multimedia interconnection hub services.

Interested parties can find technical requirements and other additional information—and sign up to participate—here.

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