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Your industry review for: October 11, 2002

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Analogue

Call Centers

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NEC

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Upfront

Network World:  IP Telephony Makes Strides

Reports from two analyst firms indicate that IP telephony will make a serious challenge to traditional time division multiplexing phone system sales over the next few years. Revenue from IP PBX lines will outpace traditional PBX systems for the first time in 2003, according to a recent report by the research and consulting firm Allied Business Intelligence. Revenue for legacy PBX shipments is projected to hit $3.2 billion in 2003, while IP PBX revenue is expected to be at $6.8 billion. The report says enterprises buying new phone switches will opt for IP-based systems over circuit-switched PBXs. The report says that new IP PBX lines will go from 1.9 million in 2001 to 42 million by 2007. Observers say a major factor holding enterprises back from adopting IP telephony is the installed base of PBXs that still have shelf life; companies with PBXs that are still functional or not fully depreciated will continue to use those systems, holding off on any moves to IP telephony for the next several years. According to Allied Business Intelligence, the fear among businesses is that older PBX technology will not be as well supported by vendors down the road, and will eventually become obsolete. Research from the Eastern Management Group supports this notion, as phone systems based on voice over IP were the only PBX systems that did not decrease in sales in the second quarter of this year. According to a recent report, sales of key telephone systems, PBXs and Centrex lines to U.S. businesses fell by 4% from the first quarter, while enterprise IP PBX systems increased slightly. However, Eastern Management Group estimates that IP PBX systems still make up only about 17% of all voice systems sold.

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News In Review

 

Analogue /Multi-Platform Ready Phones

Latest Version of DESI Labeling System Now Supports Tent Cards

DESI Telephone Labels has announced their latest software release supports tent cards. DESI software (version 2.58 / Released 2002-09-17) and tent cards, in two convenient sizes, 4” x 3.5” and 2” x 3.5”, are great for displaying additional information for installers and hoteliers alike, who find them as a great added value.  Customers wanting a unique look can have their tent cards pre-printed with customer specified text, logos, and ink colors by DESI’s custom department. Custom tent card are offered in two additional sizes, 8” x 3.5, 5” x 3.5” making it easy to display information for hotel guests or new telephone system users.

For more information on DESI products and services, visit www.desi.com

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Call Centers/CRM

Empowerment – A Contact Center Agent’s Anthem

The contact center’s tools, mission, vision and position in the corporate hierarchy has evolved dramatically in a short period of time. Today’s contact center professional must possess well-rounded skills; must have high technical aptitudes; and must combine those with that amorphous “spirit of service” so necessary to keeping clients.  Recruiting, hiring, educating and retaining staff of the highest caliber is one of the top 2 challenges recognized and faced by call center managers worldwide.  Latest figures show that as much as 66% of a contact center’s staff “turns over” every year. Issue #2 worsens issue #1, which is relatively constant --- the quandary of how to use current (and often constrained) human resources to achieve the highest possible levels of service to clients.  Overwhelming empirical evidence attests that highly empowered teams and individuals, in any given situation, best deliver high levels of service.  The contact center is no different, in that respect.  To discuss all the methods of empowering a contact center team, and the individuals who comprise that team, please contact us at:  info@telecorpproducts.com

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Channel News

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Conferences

Critical Issues Explored At Washington Conference

Issues of what can and should governments do to improve security and fight terrorism in cyberspace were among many addressed at the 30th Annual Telecommunications Policy Research Conference (TPRC) near Washington.  Among other topics covered by the nearly 300 academic, industry, government and non-profit researchers and policy-makers were: What is the right balance between freedom of speech, the fair use of information, and the need to protect copyrighted content? What can and should be done to spur the deployment and use of broadband networks? Over 100 universities, corporations, and Federal and state agencies were represented at the meeting. The two-day meeting, held September 28-30, brought together economists, political scientists, lawyers, and technologists who study telecommunications regulation, Internet policy, on-line privacy, and e-business issues. The 31st Annual TPRC will be held in the Washington area in fall of 2003. For more details on this year's (and past years') TPRC conferences and to read summaries of all the papers presented, visit www.tprc.org.

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Convergence

Avaya Switching Systems “Up to Spec” Certification
Avaya has announced that The Tolly Group awarded "Up to Spec" certification to the Avaya Integrated Stackable Telephony Solution, the Avaya P330 Stackable Switching System and the Avaya P882 MultiService switch - all of which were designed to operate in converged networks. The "Up to Spec" certification assures end-users that equipment lives up to vendor promises.  The Tolly Group tests show that the Avaya Integrated Stackable Telephony Solution ensures consistent voice quality on networks designed primarily to handle data traffic. The tests also validated that Power over Ethernet capabilities in the Avaya P330 Stackable Switching System - which is part of the stackable solution - can be used to provide power for IP phones to stand on their own, drawing power from the switching fabric for operation and enabling users to avoid potentially complicated wiring systems. The test of the Avaya P882 switch proves that it can interoperate with 13 different types of switches from eight vendors. The Tolly Group, a strategic consulting, independent testing, and industry analysis organization, conducted the evaluation at its state-of-the-art test facility in Manasquan, New Jersey.

Visit www.avaya.com or www.tolly.com

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Industry News

UAC Ranks 24th on Inc Magazine’s List of Fastest Growing Private Companies

United Asset Coverage, Inc. (UAC), a leading provider of integrated telecommunications and data networking maintenance services, announced that the company was named 24th on Inc Magazine’s listing of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies.  The Inc 500 list began ranking the nation’s top financial achievers in 1982 according to percentage sales growth over the previous five years.  The 2002 list boasts an average five-year growth rate of 1,521 percent.  UAC nearly tripled the average performance, achieving 4,367 percent growth in the past five years. UAC consolidates separate telecommunications, data networking, copier and fax maintenance programs, across all manufacturers, all models of equipment, and all locations, into one simple, fixed-price agreement.

Visit www.unitedasset.com or www.inc.com

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IP

AudioCodes Announces New Mid-Sized VoP Media Gateway
AudioCodes Ltd., a leading provider of Voice over Packet technologies and systems, has announced the launch of its Mediant 5000 Media Gateway.  This
mid-density Media Gateway meets the growing demands of Network Equipment Providers and softswitch vendors for a solution that addresses the cost, feature and reliability requirements of both service providers (for small to medium POPs) and enterprises with large campuses and call centers. When coupled with a call server or softswitch, the feature rich Mediant 5000 can address a variety of applications including IP PBX, IP Centrex and Cable Telephony. The 5U Mediant 5000 supports up to 2880 channels and is designed with redundancy to meet service provider availability and reliability requirements.  The medium-sized member in the AudioCodes family of market-ready, standards-compliant media gateway systems, the Mediant 5000 supports a variety of PSTN signaling such as V5.2, CAS, PRI and R2, and offers SS7 interworking and Sigtran support.  Call control options include support for protocols such as MGCP, MEGACO and TGCP.  In addition, the Mediant 5000 supplies a full compliment of popular vocoder options such as G.711, G.723 and G.729.  The Mediant 5000 builds on AudioCodes field proven voice capabilities and expertise in deploying VoP all around the globe.
Visit www.audiocodes.com
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Moves, Adds and Changes

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Peripherals

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Services

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Software

New Voice Mail Makes Magix a Viable Hotel Switch

Before the builders of the Howard Johnson Express in Galveston Texas began construction of the property, they knew they would need a modern telephone system. To meet these challenges, the property owners selected the DV2000 InnServer from DuVoice. DV2000 InnServer provided the PMS, call accounting, and voice mail all in one server – a big plus in the cramped switch room.  The PMS / Call Accounting package from Inn Soft is one of several third party software packages hosted on the DV2000 family of products.  The PMS provides check-in, check-out, billing, reservation and guest history features.  Call accounting takes care of long distance re-billing and is fully integrated with the PMS billing program. 

Learn more www.duvoice.com

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OEM Roundup

 

Avaya

vnunet.com: Bupa Moves to Global IP Phone System

Private healthcare firm Bupa International has become the first UK organization to implement Avaya's Enterprise Class IP Solutions (Eclips) range of convergence equipment and software. In a deal estimated to be worth £500,000, Bupa is migrating to IP telephony globally using Avaya MultiVantage voice network integration software.  Bupa chose Avaya because the systems could be demonstrated now and there was a clear roadmap. Existing kit will be replaced over time, giving it more control of how the system evolves.  Bupa is taking two Unix servers, a UPS, and a Sun workstation to run the MultiVantage CMS. Its Brighton-based head office will switch over to the IP-based system first, using its own private network which will give it a straight replacement for the existing call centre.  Later will come a link to home-workers, who will get embedded phones and the main customer services application so that they can work as though in the office. Early next year, systems integrator IP Integration will link Bupa's Hong Kong office with voiceover-IP inbound call handling.
Visit www.avaya.com

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Cisco

Visit http://cisco.com

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Lucent

Lucent Issues Warning, to Cut More Jobs

Struggling telecommunications equipment maker Lucent Technologies said it would report a wider-than-expected loss in the fourth-quarter, cut 10,000 more jobs, and take $4 billion in charges for severance and a decline in its pension assets. The company also said it canceled a $1.5 billion credit line, which it said it had not drawn from, to avoid a likely technical default. The company, which has posted nine straight quarterly losses, said it expects a fourth-quarter loss of as much as 65 cents a share. On Sept. 13, it forecast a loss of 45 cents per share. It said it expected to take a $1 billion fourth-quarter restructuring charge, on top of a $3 billion charge to cover a decline in its pension assets, primarily as a result of declines in the stock market. Lucent, which is due to post its fiscal fourth-quarter earnings on Oct. 23, said that by the end of fiscal 2003, it expects to have 35,000 employees, about 10,000 less than it previously said it expected at the end of calendar 2002. The company employed 106,000 in 2001.

Visit www.lucent.com

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Mitel

Mitel’s 5140 IP Appliance Receives "Best in Test"

Mitel Networks has announced that Miercom has rated the Mitel Networks 5140 IP Appliance as "Best in Test" in its recent IP Phone testing.  Results were published in the September issue of Business Communications Review. The 5140 IP Appliance was tested for performance, ease of use, configuration and features. It beat out IP Phones from Avaya, Cisco, Siemens and ESI and was also the recipient of Miercom's NetWORKS as Advertised Award. This result recognizes the ongoing commitment Mitel Networks has put on having the broadest and most intuitive range of IP desktop devices in the industry. The 5140 IP Appliance is the first in a series of next-generation desktop devices. Through a large-screen 320 X 240 VGA display, users benefit from a myriad of online services and real-time applications such as integrated HTML Web browsing, visual voicemail and PDA integration. The 5140 IP Appliance also comes equipped with hi-fidelity audio, dual-port 10/100 IP switch, and integrated power options.

Visit www.mitel.com

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NEC

NEC America Reaches Major Milestone

NEC has announced it has shipped more than 50,000 of its Electra Elite Key Telephone Systems (KTS). First sold in late 1998, the system has enjoyed widespread popularity in North America within its target market of small to mid-sized businesses.  Recent figures from Eastern Management Group saw NEC leap into second place in KTS lines shipped during the first quarter of this year.  The Electra Elite system currently provides VOIP capability and plans call for a pure peer-to-peer version.  The Electra Elite supports up to 192 ports and over 200 productivity-driven features including CCIS, Automatic Call Distribution, Call Accounting, Computer Telephony Integration, Least Cost Routing, Uniform Call Distribution, ISDN PRI/BRI Voice Trunks, VoIP, conference bridge and several feature-rich and diversified voice mail solutions.
For more information, visit www.optusinc.com or contact mduckworth@optusinc.com.

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Nortel

Nortel Sells Loss-Making Optical Assets to UK Firm

Nortel said last week it was selling its money losing optical components business to Britain's Bookham Technology Plc for about $108 million in a deal analysts said will help Nortel preserve much needed cash. The sale will see Brampton, Ontario-based Nortel, one of the world's largest telecom equipment makers, take a stake of about 30 percent in the much smaller British company, as well as receiving warrants, loan notes, and $10 million in cash.  The payment is just a fraction of the billions of dollars the optical components assets were valued when the telecom market was at its frothiest.  But analysts said the sale was still a modest positive because it takes the unit's losses off Nortel's books.  Analysts said Nortel's decision to sell did not represent a shift in strategy because it has been describing the operations as non-core for years. Nortel continues to operate its larger optical networks division.

Visit www.nortel.com

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Siemens

Network World:  Siemens Raises its VoIP
Siemens will in the next few weeks unleash a barrage of IP telephony products and applications aimed at large-scale enterprise convergence deployments.  Upgrades for Siemens' HiPath 5000 enterprise softswitch will double the capacity of the IP PBX to 2,000 lines, the company says. And it will be possible to use smaller HiPath 3000s as survivable switch nodes in HiPath 5000 networks. Siemens also is unveiling a line of middleware designed to extend voice and Web-based applications to mobile users.  While Siemens has offered HiPath convergence products for two years, competitors Avaya, Cisco, Nortel and 3Com were first to scale support beyond 1,000 IP users, observers say.  At the heart of the new capabilities is Version 4.0 of Siemens' call-control software, which runs the HiPath 5000 in corporate sites and the HiPath 3000 in smaller offices. While the 4.0 software does not increase the capacity of the HiPath 3000 - 500 lines - it does let HiPath 3000s act as H.323 gatekeepers and TDM trunk/gateways for a centralized HiPath 5000. Off-loading public switched telephone network and voice-over-IP trunk processing and H.323 gatekeeper functions - call setup, teardown - to the HiPath 3000 means the HiPath 5000 can handle more calls, Siemens says.
Visit www.siemens.com

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Natd Conference News

 

MEETING TITLE        Winter Meeting 2003

DATE                           February 2003

LOCATION                  South Seas Plantation, Captiva Island, Florida

AGENDA                      Coming Soon

REGISTRATION          Stay tuned

 

OTHER INFORMATION         

If you are interested in sponsoring, please contact Ruth Stramberg at mailto:rstramberg@natd.com or call in the U.S. 201-445-4223

 

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