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Rich Tehrani

[July 27, 2004]

Centillium Chips Away At VoIP Market Barriers



Centillium Communications (news - alert) has been in the VoIP (news - alert - define - tutorial) space since the late 90s and the company has been educating theCentillium Palladia 220 market at TMC�s Internet Telephony shows when others in the space went into seclusion. During this period, the company was innovating. These investments paid off as now they have a few new products that will further help the VoIP space.

Atlanta 100 is a RISC-based system on a chip or SOC (news - alert - define) for short, which supports up to eight voice channels for phone and fax and routing over broadband connections, whether they be ADSL, cable, WiMAX (news - alert - define - tutorial), etc. Included is a hardware reference design.

This customer premises equipment (CPE) product will allow service providers to increase their revenue by giving consumers toll-quality VoIP with features such as global phone number portability, virtual phone numbers, iron clad security, echo cancellation and other features you won�t find on the PSTN.

You will also find Caller ID, Japan Caller Identification Protocol, call forwarding, call waiting, generic voice activity detection, comfort noise generation (so you know the call is still active), message waiting indicator, teleconferencing, call hold and pulse dialing.

VoIP protocols supported are G.711 (PCM), G.729a/b, G.726.32 and G.723.1. There is also support for Internet protocol Security, (IPSec), Data Encryption Standard (DES), 3DES, and Advanced DES. An OEM can add WiFi (news - alert - define - tutorial) support as well if desired.

Overall this is a robust chip and it shows that semiconductor integration continues to engulf more and more functions that used to require extra circuitry. This lowers cost, reduces electricity needs (which means less heat dissipation) and typically increases MTBF.

The company has also developed the first gateway on a chip named the Palladia 400, which will allow service providers to deploy home gateways, IADs, SOHO voice routers, and IP PBXs (news - alert - define - tutorial).

The chip-based gateway supports ADSL2/2+ and 2++. It further offers a 200 MHZ MIPS processor and DSP designed specifically to process VoIP. The device is designed for 50 Mbps downstream access! Let me take a moment to ponder. Actually no, please allow me to beg. If any service provider in the North East, specifically Connecticut is thinking about testing the rollout of 50 Mbps downstream DSL service, PLEASE let me be the first beta tester. I even promise to write about it!

All in all, miniaturization of VoIP components is an excellent thing as it lowers cost and makes it easier to develop new products and of course increases competition. Centillium has shown that they worked hard through the economic downturn and they are now around to help service providers take advantage of the VoIP market as it continues to flourish.

Please talk back to me in our forums.

Rich Tehrani is TMC's president. He welcomes your comments. Participate in our forums.

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