Voice over WiFi – Coming to a Phone Near You
Vendors of network and communications equipment are taking notice and are rolling out phones to take advantage of the technology. WiFi phones include Cisco WiFi based 7920 , Softphone from Xten , and PocketPresence. SpectraLink makes handsets that can provide voice over WiFi. (Full disclosure: I own no shares of stock in this company but consider buying it given their 40% annual growth rate in addition to their quarterly cash dividend of $0.10/share.)
The standard to watch is 802.11e. It provides Quality of Service (QoS) support for LAN applications in particular, Voice over Wireless IP (VoWIP). The standard provides levels of service with managed levels of QoS for data, voice, and video applications. Security and range are key issues to resolve in current implementations.
The current implementations also need jitter control and bandwidth partitioning to make it work on existing networks.
Deployments are starting up. City-wide voice over WiFi coverage is coming first to Rio Rancho, New Mexico, with a population of 65,000 people where Intel has a major facility.
If you are working with WiFi, I would like to hear from you. You can reach me at email@example.com.
Hall T. Martin