Alcatel Brings the (Networking) World to Paris

Alcatel held its annual Enterprise Forum in France this week with over 8000 customers, channel partners and applications partners being hosted by the company at the Palais de Congres in central Paris. Maren Bennette of Comms Business Magazine went along.

“IP has won the battle”, said Jean-Christophe Giroux, President of Alcatel’s Enterprise Solutions Division, in his key note speech to senior business partners. He went on to say that the French multinational communications giant was well positioned to meet customer demand for the new converged infrastructure and applications. “We know voice, we know data and we know wireless. We have customers around the globe who have deployed end to end Alcatel IP networks. In Europe we are the number one vendor for telephony systems. This week we are launching our concept of User Centric networking that ties it all together and makes it work for human at the end of the line.”

User-Centric networking is Alcatel’s spin on “any time, any place, any way” networking that all the major vendors are playing up for all they are worth. Alcatel believes they have an edge over the other manufacturers’ because of their expertise in all elements of the formula – voice, data, video and wireless connectivity. At the Forum they announced a partnership with Nokia whereby the Alcatel OmniSwitch and OmniAccess product sets will support the Finnish company’s dual-mode Wi-Fi/GSM SIP mobile phones.

In the exhibition that is running in parallel with the Forum, there are almost 100 stands featuring Alcatel products, Alcatel channel partners and Alcatel applications partners.

One such partner is Marshall Sherman, who is at the show with his own channel partner Avanquest, which is launching a range of IP telephony applications especially developed for Alcatel by Ghost Software, Sherman’s UK-Pakistan software development company.

Sherman noted: “Alcatel is a company that has seen the light with regards to IP. They will now be grasping the opportunity with both hands. We will be delighted to work alongside of them to offer solutions to make the most of the new paradigm.”