IP Telephony News Wrap-up for Sep, 27 1999

CableLabs Releases Initial PacketCable Specifications

CableLabs Releases Initial PacketCable Specifications
CableLabs announced that it has released seven PacketCable 1.0 draft specifications to a group of approximately 240 participating industry vendors for review and comment. It provides for functionality including call signaling, QoS control, PSTN interconnection, security, network management, codec support, billing event messages and network announcements over DOCSIS-enabled cable plants. It is built around the publicly available PacketCable network-based call signaling (NCS) specification, which is a cable-specific enhancement to MGCP. Future releases are expected to add features to the NCS architecture, as well as continuing to examine other multimedia signaling protocols for services such as interactive video, integrated web/audio/video communication, and network based gaming.

The complete specification is scheduled to be released by the end of next month.

In related news, CableLabs reported that a group of vendors participated in its PacketCable virtual test network to test the interoperability of their respective products based on PacketCable technologies including 8×8, Acer, ACT Networks, Catapult, Cisco, Clarent, Intel, Inter-Tel, Lucent, Motorola, Netrix, Netspeak, Nokia, Nortel, Paknetx, Radvision, Samsung, Sharp, Siemens, Smith Micro, Sony, VCON, Videoserver, Vocaltec, and VTEL.

Cable Labs


USATalks To Expand VoIP Service Into Korea & UK
USATalks.com reported that it is teaming with South Korean based Global Talks Network.com and an undisclosed UK firm to launch a flat rate, unlimited VoIP services in each company's respective market. Global Talks will negotiate with local South Korean telcos and finance the deployment of a VoIP network in South Korea. In the deal with the UK firm, USATalks will purchase an eighty percent equity stake in the corporation, rename it UKTalks, and develop a VoIP network and service via the existing telephone operating rights and contracts that the company has established throughout the UK.

The South Korean service is scheduled to be available during Q'1 of next year, with the UK service expected to be launched later this year. The providers also plan to eventually interconnect networks to offer a flat rate, unlimited international long distance VoIP service.

USATalks.com recently expanded the availability of its California based VoIP service to include select markets in New York, with plans to deploy service to an additional 15 areas throughout the U.S. by the end of the year. The provider utilizes Franklin Telecom's Internet telephony equipment to offer service, charging $25 to $60 per month for residential users and $60 to $90 a month for business customers.

USA Talks.com

Aplio Introduces VoIP Telephone Device
Aplio has announced the introduction of a VoIP enabling telephone device, the Aplio/PRO. The product sits between a traditional telephone and an Ethernet or RJ-11 jack. It supports H.323 compliant protocols such as G.723 and G.711 for interoperability with other H.323 compliant products, and it utilizes Aplio's PacketPlus technology to adjust packet size to aid in controlling latency and redundancy. In addition to its VoIP capabilities, the unit can also be used to place traditional telephone calls.

It is expected to be commercially available this winter for $299.


21st Century Telecom Tests VocalData's VoIP Equipment
21st Century, a cable operator, has announced that it is using VocalData's IP based local exchange system to trial a converged data/voice service in Chicago. VocalData's VoIP solutions consist of call agents, CPE and network hardware that interoperate with traditional voice platforms.

Earlier this year, the company introduced a VoIP system, the IP*Star, that consists of network-based telephony server software, a unified messaging package and Ethernet-IP telephones. It is a platform- independent solution that runs on a pair of redundant UNIX (carrier class) or Windows NT (enterprise) servers. It can provide individualized service partitions to over 1,000 different customer sites, and support a total of 10,000 IP telephone users. In addition, it provides PBX-like features such as auto-attendant and unified messaging. The IP telephones are multi-line business display phones that plug directly into a user's Ethernet LAN at the desktop, enabling both voice and data traffic to be converged over a single wiring infrastructure. The phones are available in 14, 21, and 37-button display models, with a 100-button version for attendant applications.


21st Century Telecom Group

ACT Networks Licenses RADVision's H.323 Technology
RADVision reported that it has licensed its H.323 protocol stack and gatekeeper toolkit to ACT Networks for further development of the SX-10 packet-telephony gateway product line.

RADVision's suite of H.323 v.1 and v.2 compliant developer products include gatekeepers, gateways, protocol stacks, adapters and software available for operating systems including Unix, Windows and several real time OSs.

The H.323 compliant (G.711, G.723, G.729, G.729a and ACELP-CN) SX-10 gateway has four integrated WAN ports, an Ethernet port and four T1/E1 line interfaces to provide a port capacity of 120, or 480 ports per rack (4 gateways). The unit supports voice, fax and modem traffic via multiple circuit switched networks using packet based infrastructures such as frame relay or IP. The product utilizes SNMP technologies to for network management via any SNMP network application, including ACT's own View 2000 Element Manager and HP OpenView solutions. In addition, the gateway ships with a gatekeeper application.

The vendor also used RADVision's gatekeeper toolkit technology to develop a Windows NT based GateXchange H.323 gatekeeper for use with the SX-10 gateways. The gatekeeper provides for multiple zone support, multiple gateway operation, resource usage control, and network topology based call routing.

In related news, Polycom has licensed RADVision's H.323 developers technology for integration into its ViewStation H.323 compliant group videoconferencing system.


ACT Networks

AT&T to Use Shomiti's VoIP QoS Tools
AT&T has announced that it will use Shomiti Systems' VoIP evaluation and testing product, Multi-QoS, in its VoIP development and quality evaluation projects. The Multi-QoS product is a network management tool designed to evaluate voice traffic over Ethernet-based IP networks. It captures and decodes the complete line of H.323 protocols and provides detail and accuracy analysis for measuring and metering voice, video and data streams on 10/100/1000 Ethernet networks.

The product is currently available. It is priced at $3,500.

Shomiti Systems


Analysys Releases 3rd Edition of Billing Market Report
Analysys has said that it will soon release the third edition of its Billing and Customer Care Systems (BACCS) market report. The study includes over 80 vendor profiles, extensive product information, billing system summaries, background information and a survey of current market and product trends. In addition, it summarizes contract market information, broken down geographically (Asia-Pacific, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Africa/Middle East, Latin America and North America).

The report is expected to be available next month in both hard copy and electronic versions, with the paper based report priced at $3,050, and the electronic version at $4,500.

Billing and Customer Care Systems 3rd Edition


IPVoice.com Deploys Additional Gateways in NY & LA
IPVoice.com reported that it has expanded the capacity of its New York and Los Angeles IP telephony POPs by deploying three additional TrueConnect VoIP gateways to bring the total gateways at each premises to four total TrueConnect VoIP gateways. The provider uses the recently deployed POPs, and its POPs in California, Louisville and Denver to offer a flat rate, unlimited VoIP service. The company expects to have the equipment deployed in an additional 26 U.S. markets by the end of the year.

The TrueConnect VoIP gateway utilizes Natural MicroSystems' Fusion technology to provide up to 96 ports per gateway with T1, E1, ISDN, PBX, and analog connectivity. The product, which supports H.323 protocols including G.723, features order entry, billing, reporting, and customer service applications. Its data-management capabilities include debit card support, invoicing functions, credit card authorization (single or batches), customer A/R module, a suite of management reporting, PIN generation, DNIS/DID/IP configuration modules, and multi-lingual support. The company also offers a partnership program that will allow other carriers to deploy the TrueConnect gateway and route traffic over the existing network of POPs.


U.S. Web Hosts to Resell Net2Phone's VoIP Ecommerce Apps
Net2Phone said that three web hosting companies including webhosting.com, 9Net Avenue and Advanced Internet Technologies, will resell its interactive voice enabled e-commerce solutions, Click2Talk and Click2CallMe, to their respective clients.

Click2Talk enables web site visitors to click an icon to initiate PC to phone VoIP communications with a business' representatives without disconnecting from the Internet. Click2CallMe is Net2Phone's web based call back service. It allows web site visitors to click an icon to receive a pop up window in which they can enter a telephone number and select a time to be called back, and a customer representative will make a call to them at that time from phone to phone.

Click2Talk & Click2CallMe



9Net Avenue

Advanced Internet Technologies

Brooktrout Adds Linux Support to Fax Boards
Brooktrout reported that it has developed Linux support for its TR114 line of fax and voice boards. The TR114 boards support up to 16 channels each. The products feature MMR compression, T.434 binary file tranfer, and support protocols such as T.38 (real-time), T.37 (store and forward) and T.30 (traditional fax machines) for sending faxes over IP networks. OEM developers can utilize a developer kit to build T.38 compliant real time Internet fax applications or download the T.37 developer note from the company's web site to develop T.37/TIFF compliant store and forward IP fax applications.

The Linux compliant board is currently available. Pricing was not disclosed.


ThinkLink Adds ICG's VoIP to Unified Service Offering
ThinkLink reported that it is using ICG Communications' U.S. domestic VoIP network and services with its web based unified messaging service. The unified service includes local and 800 numbers, voicemail, email, faxing, paging and VoIP capabilities. ThinkLink is currently offering a trial of the service at no charge in San Fransisco, Riverside, Los Angeles and Tucson. Users outside of those markets can participate in the trial for $4.95 per month, but will be limited to 100 minutes of inbound calling time.

ICG's network has approximately 236 U.S. POPs, serving 700 markets.

ICG Communications


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