Telecoms, Datacoms, Wireless, IoT


SIP - enabling a new wave of communications

19 May 2004 Telecoms, Datacoms, Wireless, IoT

SIP (session initiation protocol) is widely seen as the driver for user mobility and collaboration - improving the way employees manage their daily activities, while providing increased flexibility.

An optimistic statement, but can SIP realistically fulfil these expectations? Let us take a closer look at the protocol's proverbial claim to fame.

Adopted by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), SIP is a modular IP Telephony voice protocol for enabling a single IT enterprise platform to offer support for as many as tens of thousands of individual users around the globe. Simply put, SIP defines how the devices of individual workers interact with one another.

With SIP, enterprise workers can use a SIP address much in the same way they currently use an e-mail address to maintain contact with business colleagues and customers. Essentially, users can establish a live connection with another party or parties by simply clicking on their SIP address.

SIP-driven communications infrastructures will be able to connect a worker over any device with the individual's SIP address including desktop phones, PCs, notebook and PDAs as well as smart phones, digital cameras and even Web cams.

A compelling advantage of SIP is that it is based on open standards, therefore, countering vendor lock-in. With SIP, users have even more choice over what equipment they will be able to use in the future.

Indeed, one of the key benefits of SIP is that companies can often incorporate the new technology - as it is open standards based - without having to replace their current infrastructure.

In saying this, SIP-enabled gateways are already available and enable traditional digital-handsets to benefit from enhanced SIP Telephony services such as hosted unified messaging and personal calling features like selective call forwarding.

SIP promises to move communications from the current device-centric approach to a user-centric world.

Amongst current SIP-enabled vendor options, is 3Com's VCX V700 IP Telephony solution - made available to South African companies later this year - and one of the first SIP-based products that enable companies to take advantage of the protocol's cost-reducing and flexible features.

By utilising SIP, the VCX addresses a wide range of business communications requirements, from a handful of users to hundreds of thousands of users across headquarters, regional offices and telecommuters.

Also, the VCX solution allows for the migration from legacy network to IP-based telephony. Additionally, 3Com's 3102 Business Phone is also SIP-compliant and can be combined with the VCX solution, thus protecting enterprises' investment in IP Telephony.

For more information contact Wolfgang Held, 3Com, 011 700 8600, wolfgang_held@3com.com





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