Free IP telephony readiness assessment for SMEs

Goal is to drive adoption rates

NEC is offering small to medium sized businesses (SMEs) a free IP telephony readiness assessment so organizations can find out the state of their network infrastructure and its ability to support a converged IPT environment.

NEC product development manager, Alex Gatiragas, believes the initial uptake for Voice over IP (VoIP) has been slow, but a free assessement which would normally cost thousands of dollars, may make a difference.

Gatiragas said the review will enable SMBs to certify their network for VoIP readiness and eliminate their network as the source of any problems, saving the company time, support issues and money. "Many SMEs are reluctant to take the first step as it not only requires a financial investment but can also create potential headaches when switching from their existing voice and data office network to a new system," he said.

"For an SMB owner, there are just too many options they have to consider when changing their network such as selecting what system to buy and the complexities involved in implementing a VoIP network within the business. ''By offering this free review, we aim to simplify the process for organisations and increase VoIP adoption."

Gatiragas said there are many advantages for a business to implement a VoIP network.

"In addition to cheaper phone calls, VoIP's advanced communications features, functionality and scalability allow an organisation to experience significant productivity gains," he said.

According to research firmTelsyte, the Australian VoIP market is projected to enjoy a 10-fold expansion both in terms of users and revenue in the next five years after having grown by 500 per cent in 2005.

Telsyte managing director, Warren Chaisatien, said barriers to the adoption of VoIP include poor call quality arising from the lack of integration and consistency among IP networks.

NEC's IP telephony readiness assessment will provide businesses with information about their current network's capacity and performance as well as measure the quality of service to ensure good voice quality.

NEC can also recommend the most appropriate IPT and network solution for the business if required. Businesses interested in this testing need to have a broadband Internet link with at least two computers that the agents will be downloaded onto.

The hour long review will include testing for one network link. Additional testing costs may include an NEC technical resource to configure firewall (security) access to allow the test to run. The technology used by NEC to deliver the IP telephony readiness assessment is presently being deployed by some of Australia's largest organisations such as Toyota and the Victorian Government, to manage the day-today performance of their VoIP networks. Businesses interested in registering for this free assessment or require more information, can visit http://necbs.com.au/voip/voipreadiness.htm

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Sandra Rossi

Computerworld

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