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December 18, 2012

How IP Fax Is Constantly Improving

By Rich Steeves, TMCnet Managing Editor

Back in the good old days, the standard issue fax machine got the job done. It was hooked up to the public switch telephone network and served to shoot paperwork back and forth via analogue modems. There were protocols in place to help deal with various problems that could occur on the line, and the technology compensated for these issues in real time.

But nowadays, with businesses increasingly switching over to VoIP technology, the IP fax world is running into some bumps in the road. Because IP fax transmissions come in packet form, it creates a far different set of circumstances than traditional fax. Problems like packet loss and delay can throw a wrench in things, and a packet loss greater than one percent could cause the transmission to drop.

Fortunately, there are some ways to ensure that your VoIP network better handles fax transmissions. First, it is important to have enough bandwidth to carry all transmissions. Next, use service configurations on LAN switches to prioritize certain transmissions. Then, get priority service classes from WAN carriers using SLAs. Select queuing algorithms that prioritize voice and fax and set a large jitter buffer.

The good news is, there is a committee that is looking into IP fax transmissions and how to make them better. It is called the International Interconnection Forum for Services over IP, and it has recently written a report on this topic called “Technical Specification for Voice over IPX Service). The report talks about bandwidth requirements, packet accumulation times, transmission methods and gives guidelines for maximum latency and other parameters.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO Miami 2013, Jan 29- Feb. 1 in Miami, Florida.  Stay in touch with everything happening at ITEXPO (News - Alert). Follow us on Twitter.

Edited by Allison Boccamazzo

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