From the Enterprise VoIP Experts

May 11, 2009

Sprint Launches UC Product, including SIP-Based VoIP Calling

By SIP Trunking Report Editor

Leveraging its flagship network to deliver increasingly popular, cost-saving technologies, the nation’s third-largest wireless service provider today announced that it’s launching a new unified communications package that includes SIP trunking, VoIP and mobile integration.

Officials at Sprint Nextel Corp. say their UC solution is designed to help businesses and government agencies, especially, use the so-called “Now Network” to access voice, data, messaging and conferencing applications on their PCs, laptops, mobile phones and other devices.
According to Sprint’s president of business markets, Paget Alves, more and more customers are clamoring for a sophisticated but simple communications experience.
“We are converging wireless and wireline technologies into an unprecedented user experience that is fully mobile, flexible, feature-rich, simplified and cost-efficient,” Alves said.
Certainly, UC is nothing new. It’s been a buzz word in communications technology for years. Part of what makes Sprint’s announcement newsworthy is that the company is teaming up with some major industry players to launch its UC product, including Cisco Systems Inc., IBM and Microsoft Corp.
It’s also worth noting that Sprint is making a point to tout the VoIP portion of its UC package as SIP-enabled – another sign that SIP trunking has emerged as a communications standard.
Generally speaking, SIP trunking is a service offered by Internet telephony service providers so that businesses can adopt VoIP using their Internet connection. That way, they can communicate with others who rely on the PSTN, since the enterprise IP-PBX is connected to the service provider’s PSTN gateways over the Internet.
Sprint’s UC launch also is timely.
Last week, following revelations that part of its sweeping effort to offer high-speed mobile Internet service based on WiMAX technology had stalled, Sprint posted a 12 percent year-over-year drop in revenues, to $8.2 billion.
The reason for the drop? Mostly because it’s seen declining revenues from its wireless and wireline businesses.
Sprint is supporting its UC package with its 3G mobile broadband network as well as scattered 4G capabilities.
Hamstrung like many SPs by this economic recession, Sprint is seeking to leverage the slower economy to market its product.
As Alves said, “Unified communications is here and now. It can bring immediate benefits in the form of a competitive advantage for businesses combined with the opportunity to better manage costs in a recessionary environment.”

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Michael Dinan is a contributing editor for TMCnet, covering news in the IP communications, call center and customer relationship management industries. To read more of Michael's articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Michael Dinan