IBM, Deloitte make VoIP moves

IBM has announced a mass migration to VoIP, but whether and when it will extend to New Zealand is unclear.

IBM has announced a mass migration to VoIP, but whether and when it will extend to New Zealand is unclear.

At a Siemens conference in Las Vegas last week, IBM said it would ditch its token ring architecture where it still existed, replace it with ethernet and move to Siemens' IP PBX model. IBM invented token ring, a rival LAN protocol to ethernet.

With more than 200,000 handsets in the US alone and hundreds of Siemens PBXs there and in other parts of the world, it will be one of the biggest VoIP deployments ever.

IBM has already shifted its operations in Singapore, Dubai and Calgary to IP and IBM New Zealand spokesman Jeremy Seed says ethernet, a prerequisite to VoIP, is already in place in its Auckland and Wellington offices.

"I've have heard nothing about any intention to roll out VoIP, but that doesn't mean it won't happen at some time in the future."

Deloitte New Zealand, meanwhile, has no immediate plans to implement voice over IP technology, despite its Australian counterpart doing so.

IT manager Eugene Piercy says it's a question of seeing how the installation at the Australian professional services firm progresses.

"We'll see how Australia goes. After they've put it in, we'll review it."

Deloitte New Zealand has been looking at VoIP, "but we're quite a few months away from a decision".

Deloitte Australia said last month that it will install VoIP across its 13 Australian offices, using equipment from Nortel Networks. Deloitte Australia CIO Tim Fleming says the implementation will pay for itself within a year. The project will be spread over 12 to 18 months, with the Brisbane office the first to go live.

While it's considered the right move for Deloitte Australia, Fleming says that doesn't mean it's the right move for every organisation.

"I wouldn't say everyone should go ahead and upgrade their phone systems to VoIP, but for us it's the ideal way to wrap up our voice services the same way we did with our data services and the two will be tightly integrated," he told Computerworld Australia.

Deloitte Australia, which has 2800 staff, says its VoIP infrastructure will be based on Nortel's Succession Communication Servers, which support unified messaging, customer contact centre, remote data access and wireless VoIP.

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