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[Johannesberg, SOUTH AFRICA] - Ericsson SA recently unveiled an Internet Protocol (IP) based PBX solution that brings the benefits of software switching to local private telephone networks.
"This platform is powerful because the network is no longer just an extension on your desk, but rather is extended to wherever you might be," said Andy Martin, Ericsson's distribution sales manager for Africa.
The platform in question is Ericssons WebSwitch 2000 VoIP Gateway. Merging PBX (private branch exchange) functionality with Internet Protocol (IP) capabilities, WebsSwitch enables users to create and customise their own feature sets and network applications. "The beauty of software switching lies in having services live throughout the network, not inside a hardware switch," explained Martin.
Most companies use a PBX because it's much less expensive than connecting an external telephone line to every telephone in the organization. In addition, it's easier to call someone within a PBX because the number you need to dial is typically just 3 or 4 digits.
"You don't have to forklift your current PBX: we work with what you have to provide the functionality of IP," stated Martin.
Armed with WebSwitch next-generation operators will be able to deliver feature-rich IP telephony services to users, he continued.
The solution accordingly supports conventional analogue handsets as well as IP phones and allows for between 8 to 64 users per site. By networking WebSwitches across an IP network (local or wide area network), it's also ostensibly possible to support up to 200 users.
"When we talk about mobility, we aren't just talking about wireless phones," concluded Martin.