TeleWare Launches First “Full Featured” VoIP Solution for PDAs

TeleWare, the provider of intelligent business communication solutions for hosted and customer solutions to businesses and Service Providers, has announced availability of its iX-Fone for Microsoft CE and Microsoft PocketPC based PDA’s. Features of the new iX-Fone CE include intelligent numbering, presence, voice mail and tele-conferencing, when used alongside TeleWare intelligent eXchange (iX), the company’s SIP-based softswitch.

The iX-Fone CE client is a SIP compliant softphone allowing interaction with any conforming application and has been successfully tested with CE devices from a number of leading manufacturers including Dell, HP Compaq and HTC (manufacturer of the XDA II). The iX-Fone CE enables the use of these PDAs as WiFi telephony devices in the office and also as a mobile device into a WiFi enabled PC – for example, a portable PC/laptop used at home over a broadband connection.

“In the past, there have been a small number of shareware type VoIP offerings for PDAs from smaller vendors, but this is the first time that an enterprise class product with the full range of features has been made available,” explains Richard Holland, Product Manger for TeleWare. “We have tested it with a wide range of applications and we are committed to evolving the product, both in terms of features and in line with new standards,” says Holland.

Working with TeleWare intelligent eXchange, iX-Fone CE supports traditional PBX features on a PDA, including: message waiting, caller ID, call transfer, call waiting, call divert and call hold. The system also has tight messaging integration with Novell GroupWise, Lotus Notes and Microsoft Office. To reduce management overhead, iX-Fone can automatically update across the network via TeleWare intelligent eXchange.

“We have chosen to create a PDA softphone product on the Microsoft operating system due to the growing number of hardware vendors now available, which gives our customers the widest choice in selecting the best device for their business needs. This avoids customers having to use a particular mobile phone in order to take advantage of voice over WiFi.

In the past, the use of PDAs for telephony has been limited to specific vertical applications, such as within warehouses, where the PDAs are also used for stock control and, therefore, the business justification for the LAN upgrade to a network of sufficient quality to carry voice traffic has already been made. Improvement in LAN bandwidth availability, both in the LAN and through the pervasive availability of broadband, has expanded this market to a point where non-specialist devices have a role to play in the enterprise. This brings the use of PDAs for telephony well beyond this type of specialist application,” added Holland.

The software provides a reduction in call costs by automatically prompting the device to be selected and utilises the lowest cost network at any point in time such as fixed LAN, Wireless Network, Wireless Hotspots or cellular/PSTN network. If configured, the system will use the least expensive network available, instead of the GSM or PSTN, with subsequent cost savings to the customer.