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January 13, 2009

SIP Trunking at ITEXPO: Touching Base with J Arnold & Associates


By Greg Galitzine Group Editorial Director



Educating end users, resellers, distributors and systems integrators about SIP Trunking is on the agenda as Ingate Systems partners with TMC, leading IP-PBX vendors, SIP Trunking service providers and industry thought-leaders to present the “SIP Trunking: Everything You Need to Know” seminars at ITEXPO East 2009, which takes place February 2–4, 2009 in Miami Beach, Florida.

 
In an effort to give attendees a taste of what will be covered in the upcoming SIP Trunking seminar we decided to engage several of the featured participating speakers in a brief Q&A to get their insights into why people should attend this seminar, what the benefits of SIP Trunking are, and who might benefit from this technology, as well as a high-level view of what opportunities SIP Trunking might provide in this uncertain economy.
 
Jon Arnold, Principal, J Arnold & Associates will present a session entitled 2009 Technology Survival Roadmap — SIP Trunking and Beyond. We asked Arnold to share his thoughts ahead of the event.

GG: Why should conference-goers attend this seminar?
JA: SIP Trunking is becoming better understood now, and there is growing interest from all corners of the IP communications sector to learn how to benefit from it. Ingate has been running these seminars for a couple of years now, and have built up a community and body of expertise around SIP Trunking. This makes it a great place to be during the EXPO, especially for companies just starting to look into SIP Trunking. Anyone attending for the first time will hear from the whole spectrum related to SIP Trunking, and there aren’t many forums for doing that. And for those who are using SIP Trunking, it will be a good opportunity to learn about best practices and to see what’s coming next.
 
GG: What can attendees expect to hear from you at the upcoming seminar? (What subjects/elements will you specifically address?)
JA: I’ll be focusing on the value that SIP Trunking brings to enterprises, particularly in these difficult economic times. SIP Trunking is just one way that enterprises can reduce costs, and my presentation will also look more broadly at survival strategies they can follow to get the most out of their communications expenditures. In terms of cost reduction, I’ll be talking about a variety of ways that IP communications can be of value, and there are many beyond SIP Trunking. I’ll also address strategies other than cost reduction that enterprises can apply to survive in 2009.
 
GG: What are the benefits of SIP Trunking? Why should enterprises consider this technology?
JA: At a basic level, SIP Trunking helps reduce telephony costs, but I see a more important benefit. SIP Trunking allows enterprises to get maximum benefit from IP telephony, especially in terms of SIP-based features, many of which go beyond what is available with legacy systems. This also translates into a better quality end user experience, as end-to-end IP can deliver better quality audio than PSTN. Contact centers in particular should find this very attractive. Smaller enterprises will like SIP Trunking for yet another reason – even though this allows them to reduce the number of incoming lines to support their employees, everyone can still be assigned a direct dial number rather than splitting off into extensions.

GG: Who stands to benefit the most from adopting this technology?
JA: Enterprises stand to benefit first and foremost, and I’ve cited some of those reasons herein. Naturally, the providers stand to benefit as well, particularly those focused on SIP Trunking services. Until recently, very few providers had this focus, but IP has reached critical mass now, and the business case for SIP Trunking is strong enough to support them. Another key beneficiary would be the vendors providing the access and edge devices that facilitate IP connectivity between the service provider and the enterprise. Traditional media gateways are not optimized for this role, and vendors focused on SIP-based connectivity are well positioned to drive adoption in the enterprise.
 
GG: Does the current financial situation bode well for SIP Trunking or does the economy pose a challenge to the success and adoption of this technology?
JA: On a basic level, this economy is conducive for SIP Trunking, since it can help enterprises save money. If it was positioned solely on that basis, there would be receptive audience, but I think that’s only part of the story. In this market, some enterprises will have a narrow focus on cutting costs, and SIP Trunking might find a home here. However, other enterprises will think strategically and view this tough climate as an opportunity to evaluate their processes, priorities, competencies, etc. In these cases, SIP Trunking will be considered for more than just cost savings. These companies will see it as an investment to get a better ROI on their IT spend, and a way to improve their communications processes. In this context, SIP Trunking moves from being a point solution, so to speak, to being part of a strategic emphasis on communications infrastructure and ways to leverage this to achieve competitive advantage.
 
 
ITEXPO takes place at the Miami Beach Convention Center, in Miami Beach, FL, February 2–4, 2009.
 
Sponsors of the SIP Trunking: Everything You Need to Know workshop include:
 
Platinum Sponsors: Avaya, BandTel
Gold Sponsor: Cbeyond
Sponsors: AireSpring, BBTelesys, Bandwidth.com, Digium, Iwatsu, J Arnold & Associates, ShoreTel, SIP Forum, and VOIPSA.

Greg Galitzine is editorial director for TMC’s IP Communications suite of products, including TMCnet.com. To read more of Greg’s articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.

Edited by Greg Galitzine
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