Computex Vendors Push IP Telephony with VOIP Gateways

While traditional phones are getting IP telephony at the Computex show, IP phones seem to be few and far between.

TAIPEI, Taiwan—The networking companies at the Computex show here are not touting IP phones extensively this year, but IP telephony is getting a bit of attention.

In the IP phones place are FXO VOIP gateways, both wired and wireless, sporting an RJ-45 port for network connectivity and two to eight RJ-11 ports for legacy PSTN phones.

Phil Lan, product marketing manager at Micronet Communications Inc., said the companys VOIP offerings focus on offices looking to switch to IP telephony without large upgrade costs for new IP phones.

The companys FXO VOIP gateways feature RJ-11 ports for regular office phones, which then can connect to Micronets new 1U VOIP communication server, the SP-5210. Its a Session Initiation Protocol (SIP)-compliant proxy server that can handle 200 simultaneous phone calls and as many as 2,000 subscribers.

The SP-5210 has NAT transversal capabilities, allowing for over-WAN communications from private, nonroutable addressed phones and computers.

/zimages/3/28571.gifClick here to read about WebEx integrating its online meeting service with IP phones.

Micronets product lineup also includes an IP phone, the SP-5100, and IP telephony gateways with traditional RJ-45 ports. Although Lan did not have a price available for the VOIP communication server, he said the companys IP phone—currently being sold only to telecommunications service providers—is less than $100.

The company will be launching a new digital enhanced cordless telecommunications (DECT) phone in the fourth quarter, aimed at the small to midsize business (SMB) market.

Some of the more interesting exhibits at the show included a Bluetooth IP telephony headset and USB dongle combo from Inwood Industries Co. Ltd. The Bluetooth headset/USB dongle combination uses a PC soft phone for protocol navigation and user interaction. The soft phone product, developed in-house by the company, also can be used as a standalone product.

/zimages/3/28571.gifClick here to read about Pingtel going open source with its IP telephony platform.

Inwood Industries IP phones, including its wired and Wi-Fi models, are SIP-based. Its gateway product offers direct connections from IP phones, regular telephones and PBX connectivity—all of which can be routed over the Internet via the companys IP telephony service "in-phone," which is bought as a packaged service or on an individual, prepaid smart card.

One of Taiwans largest network product makers, CyberTAN Technology Inc., is also joining the VOIP market, with two new VOIP security gateways set for mass production in the third quarter and a Wi-Fi IP phone due for production in the fourth quarter.

The VOIP gateways will feature an IPSec VPN using DES and tripleDES and a built-in configurable firewall, said Jesse Ouyang, senior director of the companys product marketing division.

Ouyang said CyberTANs proprietary router and gateway firmware used in its products set the company apart from its rivals. "Our products are not just hardware made to order, but complete boxed solutions," he said.

The companys business comprises OEM/ODM and product label deals, with an emphasis on providing a total solution, said Lynn Kuo, CyberTANs corporate marketing manager.

Some of the companys major clients include Motorola Inc., Cisco Systems Inc.s Linksys division, MELCO Inc. and Corega International SA, Kuo said.

CyberTANs wireless business generated more than 50 percent of the companys revenues in 2003, and this contribution will rise to 60 percent to 70 percent this year, according to Kuo.

Another Wi-Fi IP phone being showcased at Computex this year is Senao International Co. Ltd.s SI-7800H—a wireless IP phone that combines VOIP technology with WLAN connectivity in a handset, using SIP.

The SI-7800H is 802.11b-compliant. Senao sells products under its own brand and that of its wholly owned U.S. subsidiary EnGenius.

/zimages/3/28571.gif Check out eWEEK.coms VOIP & Telephony Center at for the latest news, views and analysis on voice over IP and telephony.