Nokia, Alcatel Team on Telephony Services for Mobiles

In a move to bridge the gap between fixed and mobile communications, Alcatel and Nokia on Thursday announced a collaboration that would bring telephony features to mobile devices.

Dubbed “Intellisync Call Connect for Alcatel,” the offering will integrate Nokia’s E-series business-class devices into the Alcatel IP Communication server network.

The collaboration brings together the enterprise-class strengths of each company, Nokia’s E-series and Alcatel’s OmniPCX. The result offers desk phone functionalities to the mobile user.

Practical Benefits

The collaboration could offer some practical benefits to enterprise workers. Desk phone-like features would require employees to keep and manage just one business number. They could control where and when and on which device they receive their calls. Users can also tap into call conferencing, call-back and dial-by-name functions.

Enterprises may find it beneficial to increase the accessibility of employees and profit from the substantial cost savings that Nokia and Alcatel are promising. The IP telephony infrastructure enables companies to take advantage of Alcatel’s Least Cost Routing capabilities which, according to Alcatel, significantly reduce international mobile calling charges and provide greater control of overall communication costs.

Telcos are feeling the pressure from wireless and cable companies alike as new technologies are developed and deployed that could make wireless the next telecommunications pathway into the home.

“With VoIP services starting to become a serious contender for voice traffic and the bandwidth limitations twisted pair creates, a whole series of competitive dynamics emerges,” Joe Nordgaard, director of the wireless consulting firm Spectral Advantage, told TechNewsWorld.

A Sense of Urgency

Those competitive dynamics are spurring a sense of urgency in service providers such as AT&T and Verizon to drive fiber to the home. Their hope is not only to increase the bandwidth for current offerings, but to pre-position themselves for future voice and entertainment services.

“If wireless providers get bandwidth from the 700 Mhz spectrum, we could see a whole new competitive dynamic in the U.S. — you could have a third entry into the home,” Nordgaard said. “That would allow for some price competition and some service offerings at the lower end.”

Nokia’s Mobile Suite

Part of that possibility depends on congressional hearings to pave the way for access to the 700 Mhz spectrum. Nokia appears to be preparing for the possibility with its Intellisync Mobile Suite, of which Call Connect for Alcatel is a part.

Alcatel’s OmniPCX Enterprise, an integrated, interactive communications solution that delivers Alcatel’s Cellular Extension software, enables Intellisync Call Connect. Currently, the service uses the cellular network to connect to a company’s PBX infrastructure. Alcatel plans to enhance the system to support both cellular and WiFi networks with dual-mode phones in the near future.

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