Mobile VoIP Part 2 - When will it take off?

In part two of his mobile VoIP feature, Adam Turner asks when this technology will take off.

PREVIOUSLY: The future is calling on mobile VoIP

While analyst groups such Ovum believe mobile VoIP and dual mode phones will be big, they predict mobile carriers will drag their feet. With the boom in smartphones capable of running VoIP software, mobile phone carriers are being left out of the picture.

Networking giant Cisco has established two dual mode phone pilot sites in Australia, in conjunction with partner Dimension Data. The pilots use the recently released Nokia Intellisync Call Connect for Cisco software, based on Cisco's Skinny Client Control Protocol (SCCP), to integrate Nokia E61, E61i and E65 mobile phones to a Cisco unified messaging system.

The technology has a lot to offer some organisations, but mass adoption is still several years away, says Dimension Data enterprise architect Darren Kay.

"I think it will take off slowly, I don't think they'll see rapid adoption in the next six months," Kay says.

"I think the big advantage of dual phones comes when you're got large campuses or multiple offices, that's when it really kicks in with the savings. In the next six months dual mode handsets will really only be used by people who really want to play with the technology and the sake of testing. I think within one to two years we will probably see the mass take up."

Microsoft's upcoming launch of Office Communication Server 2007, building on the software giant's unified communications platform, will also drive interest in wireless VoIP. Windows Mobile 6, Microsoft's latest operating system for handheld devices, also comes with a Session Initiated Protocol (SIP) client pre-installed for making VoIP calls.

Windows Mobile 6 devices should have enough grunt under the bonnet to handle wireless VoIP calls.

Microsoft is seeing growing interest in wireless VoIP from large corporations, says Microsoft enterprise mobility solution specialist Rick Anderson.

"I generally don't see many people actually deploying it currently, it more often something that is on the road map of large organisations. Whether they get to wireless VoIP in a year or two years time, they just want to make sure that today they are buying devices that are capable and compatible," Anderson says.

NEXT: Who uses mobile VoIP today?


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