Adtran increases its voice to PBX

A manufacturer of enterprise and carrier networking equipment is moving into the IP PBX market by releasing an integrated unit for small businesses and branch offices.

Adtran Inc. of Huntsville, Ala., has launched the NetVanta 7100, a US$5,195 unit that integrates voice, data, high-speed Internet and security functions.

“That provides a number of benefits both to the reseller and the end user,” said Paul Smelser, a product manager in Adtran’s enterprise division “from a cost standpoint, from a simplified installation and maintenance standpoint, troubleshooting and cabling.”

Adtran says it has 200 resellers in Canada. However, sale of the 7100 will be limited to select gold-level solution providers.

“Within our reseller program we are creating an IP telephony partner category,” Smelser said. “In order to get access to the 7100 you have to get some specialized training and invest in the program.”

Managed regions
“We will be managing the territories and the vertical markets” of these partners, he added, “so that we prevent any direct head-to-head competition.”

The 7100 includes voice-mail, support for SIP and analogue phones, a firewall, a virtual private network for remote workers.

“It addresses what we feel are two of the primary barriers to voice over IP being deployed by businesses with 50 employees or less – number one, cost, and number two, complexity and ease of use.”

Earlier this month the company also announced that it is co-branding two IP telephones and a conference phone from Polycom for resellers to sell with its systems, as well as an OEM deal with CounterPath for a softphone.

Adtran says that its so-called “office-in-a-box” is the answer to other companies who promote multiple products for a converged VoIP network.

For example, it says its 24-person IP PBX solution (including phones and a 7100 with two optional WAN cards) would cost US$545 a person compared to at least US$725 from other vendors.

“We’ve lowered the cost per station of voice over IP for this market segment to something that is consistent with what companies are used to paying for key systems or even small PBX-type solutions.”

The 7100 comes with free firmware updates and a 5-year warranty.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Howard Solomon
Howard Solomon
Currently a freelance writer, I'm the former editor of ITWorldCanada.com and Computing Canada. An IT journalist since 1997, I've written for several of ITWC's sister publications including ITBusiness.ca and Computer Dealer News. Before that I was a staff reporter at the Calgary Herald and the Brampton (Ont.) Daily Times. I can be reached at hsolomon [@] soloreporter.com

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