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IBM launches new integration services for IP telephony networks

IBM Corp. has expanded its portfolio of services for migrating its customers' telephone systems to Internet Protoco...

December 12, 2002  

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IBM Corp. has expanded its portfolio of services for migrating its customers’ telephone systems to Internet Protocol-based (IP) networks.

This week’s announcement comes as many companies are now investigating IP telephony as a valid alternative to their legacy systems when faced with new phone system decisions, especially when renewing branch office equipment and fitting new buildings, the company said in a statement.

“Improvements in IP telephony technology are compelling customers to evaluate converging their voice and data networks to achieve cost savings, increase manageability and reap the benefits of IP-enabled applications,” said Colleen Rafferty, vice president, IBM Networking Services.

When voice-enabled, an IP network can handle voice communications and voice mail, e-mail, fax, call center applications, personal assistance tools and teleconferencing. IBM also provides the network security and network cabling services that may be needed to support an IP telephony system.

IBM and Cisco Systems helped Group Generali, a leading French life insurance company, migrate its traditional telephone system to an IP-based network. “The migration of our network allows us to build a new foundation dedicated to serving our group strategies, develop network communications and optimize information-sharing internally,” said Francis Thomine, production manager at GIE Informatique GSYS, Generali France.

IBM is working toward voice-data integration across its own global infrastructure, and has deployed IP Telephony systems based on Cisco’s technology at IBM facilities in Toronto, Calgary, Singapore, Tel Aviv and Dubai. Other sites are planned, with a variety of technology providers.

Research firm IDC predicts that the market for IP telephony services will grow 49 per cent annually to US$40.9 billion by 2007.

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