IP telephony on hold at Tourism NZ

Tourism New Zealand has put an experiment with IP telephony on hold because of voice quality problems, says Keith Thomas, the body's corporate services general manager.

Tourism New Zealand has put an experiment with IP telephony on hold because of voice quality problems, says Keith Thomas, the body's corporate services general manager.

"We had a lot of problems with it and and, as a result, had to revert to the old phone system."

The trial involved 60 staff in Tourism New Zealand's Wellington, Auckland and Christchurch offices and while it had to be abandoned, Thomas says the organisation hasn't written off IP telephony as a technology.

"I understand the problem is now fixed and we may give it another go in nine to 10 months' time."

Cisco New Zealand manager Tim Hemingway says the trial failed because the installation of Cisco equipment, by Cisco and Attica Communications, was attempted on a "brand new network which hadn't been bedded in".

The problems have since been ironed out, Hemingway says.

"Quality of service mechanisms are now in place to enable voice over the network."

Installer Attica Communications admits there were problems with the trial, which was its first IP telephony rollout and the first deployment on its own network.

Unlike most IP telephony resellers, managing director Wayne Toddun says, Attica operates its own network, rather than providing a gateway to the PSTN.

"We have nationwide infrastructure; we're a carrier, we communicate with our customers via IP and Tourism New Zealand was the first customer we had on the network.

"We had some teething problems and it didn't want to worry about getting things fixed, so went back to the traditional telephone system for 12 months."

After the six-week spell trial in the middle of the year, Tourism New Zealand reverted to its former telecommunications provider, Clear, signing a new year-long contract.

Attica has since successfully installed IP telephony for 30 customers, Toddun says.

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