From the Wireless VoIP Handset Experts
By: Erik Linask
During the past decade, there has been no single opportunity for lowering recurring cost while adding value to a business than the implementation of VoIP to replace legacy TDM telephony. In addition to reducing operational expenses, VoIP can be easy to deploy – there are a number of systems that can be set up in less than a day, even less than an hour, depending on the size of the implementation.
There’s also the flexibility a VoIP system offers. As a business grows, adding new extensions and additional capacity are easily done by the network administrator – they do not require a technician to be called in from the service provider. VoIP systems can be implemented – and expanded – using existing wiring and other infrastructure, so there is little that is required in terms of physical installation. Furthermore, new features and capabilities can be added with simple software upgrades, which are then extended to the entire network.
Among the most requested capabilities enabled by VoIP systems is mobility, which comes in several flavors, and is a key element of transforming VoIP into Unified Communications (News - Alert). For instance, mobility is embraced by executives and other road warriors,
who travel regularly, but are able to connect an IP phone or laptop with a softphone to an IP network to place and receive calls while on the road. And certainly the latest generation of smartphones and software to extend PBX (News - Alert) capabilities to wireless devices are a major driver of mobile productivity.
But mobility is finding an increasingly relevant role within enterprise facilities as well, with the proliferation of WiFi (News - Alert) routers and access points, which provide connectivity to laptops, WiFi-enabled smartphones, and a growing number of wireless VoIP phones – a logical evolution of traditional cordless handsets that are so popular in the consumer market. WiFi-enabled VoIP handsets allow users to not only move within an office environment to collaborate more effectively without having to hang up and place return calls, they also allow users to receive important calls when away from their deskphones, further increasing collaboration among colleagues and enhancing customer service.
To support businesses looking to leverage their wireless infrastructures, UniData Communication Systems is launching a new WiFi-enabled voice and video handset, its SQ-3000. The SQ-3000 supports 802.11a/b/g protocols, and for high-quality video and H.264 playback at 30 fps, it sports a 240x320 resolution 2.8-inch touchscreen, along with the G.722.2 wideband codec for the highest quality voice calling. For added functionality, UniData has integrated video and music file playback capabilities, and a XHTML browser, and added a battery that offers up to three hours of video and six hours of voice calls on a single charge.
UniData, which already has two 802.11b/g-capable voice handsets on the market – its WPU-7000 and WPU-7700 models – has tested all of its SIP-based handsets for compatibility systems from Avaya (News - Alert), Nortel, and BroadSoft, as well as Asterisk-based platforms.
WiFi-enabled IP handsets are drawing increased attention in a variety of vertical markets, including healthcare, financial, hospitality, higher education, retail, and security, as well as the general enterprise space. The ability to place and receive calls anywhere within the WLAN environment is quickly being recognized by executives as an easy means of increasing productivity– not to mention reducing costs, since they cut down the number of cellular minutes used within the enterprise.
For instance, healthcare facilities are able to leverage their converged IP networks to reduce monthly calling costs and simplify network management, while increasing communications between doctors, nurses, and patients. In an effort to enhance patient care, instant, direct communication with care givers and other hospital staff expedites response time and decision making, significantly enhancing their ability to provide consultation and service in what may literally be life or death situations.
In the hospitality space, many hotels have already adopted VoIP as a way to cut calling costs internally and for guests. Unified management platforms and ease of deployment help reduce maintenance and administration costs and time, and because many hotels already provide wireless broadband access already, so integrating WiFi-enabled handsets is a simple task. Installing WiFi-enabled handsets also means hotels can reduce the number of phones they install in guestrooms, since the handsets are not tied to a desk or a night table – the same phone can be used throughout the room.
The combination of cost effectiveness, productivity increases, and convenience have already made the case for WiFi phones in many businesses. The continues investment in WLANs, and improved resilience of wireless networks only adds to the draw of making WiFi handsets a part of every business. UniData’s voice-only and now voice and video capable wireless VoIP handsets present a functional – and attractive – option for any business looking to leverage its WLAN investment. IT
Source Link : http://www.tmcnet.com/voip/0909/from-the-wireless-voip-handset-experts.htm