AT&T will soon begin trials of a global voice-over-IP service aimed at multinational corporations that want to configure worldwide, single-PBX-like dialing.
The service, with an expected launch next year, should also appeal for its ability to link up remote or roaming workers with broadband connectivity and IP phone or softphone. It follows on the heels of the Bedminster, N.J.-based carriers domestic VOIP CallVantage launch in March, and will employ a similar feature set, including Web-retreivable voice mail, ad-hoc conferencing for up to 10 participants, call logging and click-to-dial.
Web-accessed voice mail will allow participants to hear their messages by phone or PC and forward them to anyone in the world via e-mail. Call logs will allow participants to track and monitor their calling habits or move frequently called numbers into their personal phone books for click-to-dial access.
The trials are scheduled to begin in the third quarter of this year in Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore and the United Kingdom. AT&Ts global network uses MPLS (Multi-Protocol Labeled Services) routing technology to drive down packet latency and achieve toll-quality (i.e., traditional telephony) voice transmission. It routes voice over any data network, including ATM, frame relay and IP-VPN.
The carrier is reporting a fourfold increase in the number of VOIP business customers over the past four years. The announcement follows a similar offering from Equant, a division of France Telecom, and those of other global data networking companies.