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December 18, 2006

Linksys' New VoIP iPhone Offer Goes Beyond Talk

By Johanne Torres, TMCnet Contributing Editor

Linksys’ (News - Alert) new VoIP offering hits the market today, and it is making news because it actually gives customers more than just “plain talk.”




The Cisco division unveiled its iPhone suite of VoIP handheld devices today which integrates services from Yahoo! Messenger with Voice, to help enable real-time presence features that can allow consumers to see when their friends and family are actually online and ready to talk; Local Search and weather forecasts; and access to music, photos, and streaming video. Included in the suite are two new products: the iPhone Dual-Mode Internet Telephony Kit for Skype (News - Alert) and the iPhone Wireless-G Phone for Skype.

“As the next generation of handheld devices, Linksys iPhone voice solutions and products are changing the way people communicate with their friends, family and colleagues. They enable compelling Internet services, allow consumers to know when their contacts are available for calls, and offer access to personal content like music, movies and live video cameras,” said Linksys senior vice president and general manager Mike Pocock in a statement.

“The development of the iPhone family demonstrates our flexibility in selecting the right partnerships, feature sets, and product designs to exceed the demands of even our most connected customers to whom the Internet is no longer a destination, but an inextricable part of their lives,” he added.

The iPhone suite also features the iPhone Cordless Internet Telephony Kit CIT200; the iPhone Dual-Mode Internet Telephony Kit CIT300; the iPhone Wireless-G IP Phone WIP300; the iPhone Wireless-G IP Phone with Web Browser WIP330; and the iPhone Dual-Mode Cordless Phone for Yahoo! Messenger with Voice.

Yahoo! had teamed up with Linksys to introduce the Linksys Dual-Mode Cordless Phone for Yahoo! Messenger with Voice (CIT310) last month. The device combines lower-cost VoIP calling with Yahoo! Messenger with Voice, as well as traditional landline/PSTN calling.

The dual-mode cordless phone enables users to place free Internet-based calls to their Yahoo! Messenger Contacts. Subscribers to Yahoo! Phone Out can also use the cordless phone to make Internet-based calls to any traditional or mobile phone at lower rates. The device's USB base station allows users to take their Yahoo! Messenger with Voice's calls away from the PCs and roam into other rooms. The phone also has a button that enables the user to easily switch their call from VoIP to a traditional landline with just a click.

Users can also search for local business info from their phone with Yahoo! Local Search. They can also program the phone with a local ZIP code to search for a local business and call the establishment with one click. The phone can also be used to access weather forecasts through a weather search setting.

Want to learn more about IP Telephones? Then be sure to check out TMCnet’s Whitepaper Library, which provides a selection of in-depth information on relevant topics affecting the IP Communications industry. The library offers whitepapers, case studies and other documents which are free to registered users.

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Johanne Torres is contributing editor for TMCnet and Internet Telephony magazine. To see more articles by Johanne Torres, please visit her columnist page.







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