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March 15, 2006

Linksys Unveils LVS 9000 Line for SOHO/SMB

By Robert Liu, Executive Editor

Cisco Systems' (News - Alert) Linksys (News - Alert) division announced a new line of SIP-based telephony products dubbed the Linksys Voice System 9000 (LVS 9000) targeted at the Small Office/Home Office (SOHO) and “very” small business customers.
Designed to support small businesses with up to 16 users, the new LVS 9000 line includes an IP PBX/Key system, a family of IP desktop phones ranging in price from $90 to $180, an Analog Gateway for connection to the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) as well as wireless and Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) adapters.
Authorized Internet Telephone Service Providers (ITSPs) have been selected to support the offerings. Those value-added resellers (VARs), which include Cbeyond, InPhonex, Primus Telecommunications, Race Technologies, RNKVoIP, VoicePulse and Zingotel, will carry the Linksys Participating Small Business Service Provider designation. This designation means each VAR was specially trained on the LVS 9000 and has created a service offering to support the new line.
“There are more than 35 million small businesses worldwide looking for custom IP communication solutions that are custom built for their needs,” said Tarun Loomba, Linksys Sr. Director of product marketing. “To date most small businesses are forced to use enterprise or consumer voice solutions that are either too costly or difficult to use or not robust enough to support their needs.”
Still, the SPA9000 IP PBX features advanced, multi-line functionality that is commonly found in enterprise telephone networks – features like auto attendant; on- and off-business hour greetings; promotional message; on-hold music; etc. The system also allows users to park calls, fax over the Internet and intercom paging. Out of the box, the SPA9000 supports up to four users and is starts at $400.
The new family of IP Desktop Phones consists of SPA901, SPA921, SPA922, SPA941 and the SPA942 – all feature Ethernet ports to support at least one extension and (except for the SPA901) a graphical display. These telephones work with all SIP-based IP telephony solutions and with an optional Wireless-G Phone Bridge (WPB54G) users can install phones in hard-to-reach places without running cables. Service providers that choose an IP Centrex-based solution can also used the new line.
For those looking for business continuity, the SPA3000 PSTN Gateway, meanwhile, can redirected calls to a traditional PSTN carrier if Internet service is down. It can also be used as a means to integrate a legacy Telephone service with the LVS 9000 solution. The SPA9000 Gateway is priced at $90.
Evaluation units are available immediately through U.S. distribution partners including Ingram Micro, Tech Data, and D&H Distributing.
Robert Liu is Executive Editor at TMCnet. Previously, he was Executive Editor at Jupitermedia and has also written for CNN, A&E, Dow Jones and Bloomberg. For more articles, please visit Robert Liu's columnist page.


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