One of the key trends in the enterprise telecommunications market is mobility. Increasingly enterprise workers find themselves moving about the enterprise, and they want to stay connected to their most critical applications — including voice — as they move about.
To that end, a recent ABI Research study posits that the overall Voice over WiFi (News - Alert) market is expected to enjoy steady growth through 2012. The researcher forecasts that the number of access points used to handle voice traffic will experience a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 93% during this period, reaching nearly 56,000 access points by 2012.
As enterprises increasingly adopt mobile VoIP handsets supported by a WiFi network they will need to consider all that goes along with freeing their employees to roam productively about the workplace.
In addition to considerations like call quality and battery life, enterprises need to consider the critical issue of E911.
The central E911 challenge with WiFi is that as handsets are carried from wireless access point to wireless access point the location data needs to be updated in real time in order to keep track of the user’s whereabouts. A solution from E911 specialist RedSky Technologies called E911 Manager™ is designed to address the issue of a user moving about an enterprise by interfacing with IP PBXs and extending that integration out to the WiFi Location Controllers in the WiFi Network.
When a WiFi handset registers with the network, it concurrently registers with the IP PBX (News - Alert) and E911 Manager receives an event with the IP address and MAC address of the phone. The solution then polls the Location Controller to find which access point the phone is registered with and updates the call server with the correct emergency line identification number (ELIN) for that access point. E911 Manager updates the call server with a new ELIN every time a phone moves from one access point to another.
As businesses take advantage of technology such as WiFi to make their workers more productive, they need to take into account other issues that may arise, as with the case of E911. Through innovative solutions like those proffered by RedSky (News - Alert), enterprises can be confident that they are doing everything in their power to provide the most effective tools to their employees.
Greg Galitzine is editorial director for TMC’s (News - Alert) IP Communications suite of products, including TMCnet.com. To read more of Greg’s articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.
Edited by Greg Galitzine