Allied Telesyn and Sphere Communications last week announced a deal where the two vendors will jointly sell and support Ethernet LAN and IP telephony products.
Allied Telesyn, a low-cost player in the enterprise LAN switch market, will sell its boxes along with IP PBX hardware and software from Sphere, also a small vendor which makes a Microsoft Windows-based IP PBX. Allied Telesyn will sell the package as its Intelligent IP Telephony Application.
Allied Telesyn makes standard Layer 2 and Layer 3 Ethernet switches, as well as WAN routing hardware for enterprises. These products will be combined with Sphere’s Sphericall IP PBX, which runs on Windows 2000 servers and supports endpoints -- such as IP phones or softphone client software -- through Media Gateway Control Protocol and Session Initiation Protocol. Sphere offers its own line of softphone applications, which offer presence management, instant messaging, voicemail and unified messaging applications that work with the Sphericall server. Sphericall servers can scale to 20,000 IP endpoints, according to the vendors.
Allied Telesyn is billing the combined switch/IP PBX offering as a pre-tested package, where latency, jitter and delay issues often involved in IP telephony rollouts can be avoided.
Both Allied Telesyn and Sphere are relatively small players in their respective markets. Allied Telesyn held around 1.5 percent of the total worldwide LAN switch market revenue (in the first quarter of 2004), Synergy Research Group says; Sphere had less than 1 percent of first-quarter revenue in the worldwide IP PBX market, according to Infonetics.