Alcatel has increased the IP-based features in the latest version of its OmniPCX Office server.
The OmniPCX Office sits within the Omni family of convergence products and is targeted at SMEs.
The latest update, the fifth for the product, includes IP telephony on a local wireless network, a PC based attendant console and a SIP network interface.
One of the features, the PIMphony Attendant allows for a screen-based operator. The receptionist's phone in an organization is displayed on a PC rather console. On this PC they have a visual display of all the employees in the company and can see if they are available, engaged or offline.
Because it is IP-based the receptionist can view the status of individuals not only at the head office but the branch offices as well and then route the calls over the IP network, said Brian Bird, director of marketing and business development for Alcatel.
The IP network also allows offices to "break in and break out". In this instance, if a long distance call is made from Sydney to Adelaide the call is routed via the IP network to the Adelaide switch before being switched as a local call. "You get to bypass long-distance calls," he said.
The SIP networking feature is designed to plug into next generation networks. "Rather than pure IP connectivity between sites, we use SIP," he said. "The prime method of communication is voice but you can use instant messaging or video."
Bird said Alcatel has almost 6000 SME users in Australia using the OmniPCX Office product. The single box scales to 236 users on a single site, but it can be networked to scale up to 2500 users.