What’s the Big Deal with FoIP Interop Anyway?

What’s the Big Deal with FoIP Interop Anyway?

T.38 Interop LabI recently shared with you that the industry’s deployment of FoIP is proceeding in phases. Phase I, which extended from the early days of T.38 in the fall of 1998 to just a few years ago, was characterized by the need for interoperability between intra-enterprise network elements, such as between an ATA and a gateway. But those problems are trivial in comparison to what we are dealing with today. Let’s call it Phase II.

At industry events I hear a procession of VoIP Service Providers complain about how problematic their FoIP deployments are. These problems are relatively new and the result of enterprises extending the reach of their IP networks with SIP trunking and by connecting directly with IP carriers. And–no surprise–they are confronted with some major challenges.

Today’s real battles go way beyond simple interop and equipment configuration problems of Phase I. Try sending faxes to 1000 different machines from an ATA or an IP-based fax server. What’s your success rate? Sure, you can use equipment from suppliers that have set up an interop lab and cataloged the results. But, that just doesn’t cut it. You need real hands-on experience to solve these problems. That’s because these problems aren’t interop problems, at least not in the usual sense.

So, who’s doing something about it? You guessed it, we are! As we speak, Commetrex is working in the trenches with carriers to identify and correct the problems within their networks that are keeping FoIP from achieving the transaction success rates of PSTN fax. I’ll have lots more to say about this in the days to come, so follow this blog or check back often.

So, here’s the deal: If IP is going to replace TDM, our industry will have to solve these problems, and Commetrex is right out front, leading the way.

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