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By glazou on Thursday 13 May 2004, 07:18 - Franchouillardises
If you have a SIPphone or are interested in VoIP, make sure to read this.
Hey France Telecom, after Free.fr, the other french alternative telcos and now SIP, do you feel the heat?
I think France Telecom "feels the heat", and persistent rumors say Wanadoo (France Telecom's ISP) should offer VoIP services this summer.
Most Telco's already do (FT included), you just don't realize that your 'regular' phone-call is already routed on IP-networks. It's the visible part that needs some work : hardware SIP-phones on your desk, and/or soft-phones on your PC. But most people seem to confuse VoIP with free phone-calls with a PC.
Daniel, you know who I am, and who I work for. That's all I can say See you on IRC tonight.
Hardware SIP phones already exist (but I believe you know it jhermans), I've own a Pingtel for 3 years now, but it sure is still expensive.
At work we're also using VoIP phones (Cisco to not name them) but not in SIP mode. So far I cannot say I'm impressed by this one.
For SW phones, you can already find at least one for Linux and KDE : KPhone.
jhermans : i agree...
My 2 cents : i don't really know why FT would sell VoIP to its clients... Alternative telcos do this because it's a way to route voice traffic to their own networks via their existing data infrastructure (read : adsl).
Conclusion : you can finally allow the client to have FT voice network unplugged from his home and not pay FT's monthly subscription any more.
But i can't see why FT would provide VoIP since its voice network already goes to everybody's home...
Ofcourse SIP and H323 phones exists (I have a few dozen in the lab here, most of them ugly PingTel's). But no Telco is installing them yet on the customers premises (except for some small-scale tests), for example connected to your ADSL line. For I can assure you that most Telco's are preparing the launch Real Soon Now, but they still need to invest a lot in new equipment. The transition has already started ...
The point is not that the technology works - it does. But you need to scale it up too, so you can actually supports 100.000 customers. Or 1.000.000. Or 1.000.000.000 (no, I didn't make an error here). And you still need to be sure that it can interoperate with the existing PSTN, and with networks from other Telco's, and it has to support all existing services (call forwarding, mailbox, centrex, conference systems, emergency routing, lawful intercept, ...). That's my daytime job
This is totally different from 2 people that use Skype, Netmeeting or KPhone to talk directly. That's not scalable, and not interoperable with exisiting systems. You might use it among your friends, and take some business away from the Telco. But it's not a replacement for the current PSTN and mobile networks. Companies like Skype will become better, but they will NOT stay free if they have to interface with existing networks. They also have to invest in new hardware and software. And if they want to become a real Telco, they also have to play by the rules, like providing emergency routing (110 and 911 calls f.i.), or lawful intercept (police taps). And that will cost them money too (which they have to pass to you in your subscription or billing).
That's what I mean when I say the VoIP shouldn't be confused with 'free' calling. Most of my friends seem to think that they can use their PC for phone-calls (true) without paying anything (false). But they're also the same people who confuse open-source with free software, and we all now that this isn't so simple (in my projects, I'm using Linux too, don't get me wrong).
lprevosto : if FT would provide direct VoIP services to the home, they can save an enormous amount of money in their telephone exchanges. Since they already own the copper, it would be logical to do use ADSL as the transport network, so there's no difference with the existing voice network. Other providers might do it differently (cable networks, wireless, ...) But don't forget that it's FT that owns the ADSL infrastructure !
jhermans : but FT doesn't own the whole ADSL infrastructure any more since alternative telcos deploy their own DSLAMs inside of FT's technical centers. It just owns the copper for which alternative telcos must pay a small amount/month in case of subscription resiliation (in french : "degroupage total").
Problem : VoIP and subscription resiliation will only be available if you're in a zone where an alternative telco has deploy a DSLAM (read : where the density of population is quite large). This will lead to larger disparities between cities and the rest of the country but it's a different (political) issue...
I'm not sure that moving completely to VoIP is good idea. For example FT recommends you to have an "emergency" phone not requiring a power plug to be able to make a phone call if you don't have power anymore.
jerome: et c'est pour cela que j'ai toujours chez moi un téléphone gris bakelite FT à cadran (je ne rigole pas); m'a beaucoup servi lors de la dernière panne élec du quartier...
jérome : c'est clair. Et puis il y a les numéros d'urgence, les numéros spéciaux, etc. qui ne remontent pas forcément en VoIP.
Maintenant pour le type qui n'utilise que son mobile et veut une connexion ADSL c'est bien.
jerome, daniel, lprevosto :
votre telephone PSTN marchera dans le monde VoIP aussi, sans alterations ! Il est connecte avec un DSLAM dans le centrale, en direct. Peut-etre, vous utilisez deja le VoIP (SIP our H323) sans savoir. Il ne faut pas acheter un telephone nouveau, sauf si on veut avoir les services supplementaires (video, on-line directory ...). Pour moi, le plus important est la possibilite de utiliser les noms alphanumeriques (comme une addresse email) pour. Une telephone avec un clavier, quoi.
Mais si vous ne veut pas, vous pouves utiliser votre telephone vieux aussi. Et c'est vrai, les telephones vieux marche aussi dans une panne d'electricite, mais pas la plus part des telephones modernes. On les peut encore ameliorer.
Et je pense que vous sait maintenant ou je travaille FT est actuallement un des premiers clients il y a plusieures annees, il ne sont pas lent. Un des problemes pour FT, est que son reseau VoIP utilise H323, mais la reste du monde est en train de changer pour SIP. Des problemes typiques pour un 'early-adopter'.
Co-chairman of the W3C CSS Working Group, entrepreneur, software engineer, geek, father of two, polyglot, unashamed French, duck lover. Nah.
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