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Johanne Torres[September 21, 2004]

Ford Motors to Install VoIP Phones


SBC Communications, Inc. (news alert - quote) announced a deal made with Ford Motors Corp. (quote) to provide the automobile giant with a Voice over IP (VoIP) (define - news - alert - tutorial)  telephony system. The telecommunications company will design, implement and manage the installation of about 50,000 Cisco IP phones for Ford�s southeast Michigan-based headquarters and other offices. This project is said to be one of the largest VoIP deployments in the country to date.


Under the new agreement, SBC aided by Cisco Systems will unify Ford�s separate communication networks and bundle them into a single IP-based network, carrying voice, video and data. In Ford�s case, SBC will be installing a package based on its PremierSERV IP Telephony Advantage platform, using the Cisco Systems' IP Communications system. Ford�s new VoIP-based communications network will include an installation of about 50,000 Cisco IP phones to be used throughout 110 Ford facilities in southeast Michigan over three years. The new system will be supported on-site by SBC PremierSERV Managed Care engineers.


"We are very excited to have the opportunity to work with Ford in this groundbreaking IP telephony deployment," said Ray Wilkins, group president, SBC Marketing and Sales. "SBC companies bring years of voice and data experience to the table. That knowledge, along with our

focus on delivering fully managed services, enabled us to work with Ford to assemble the right strategy to meet its unique needs."


In addition to the benefits of network convergence, the new IP telephony services will provide Ford with plug-and-play functionality - employee moves, adds and changes can be managed instantly, and businesses can scale up or down without calling vendors or ordering new cards.


"We look forward to working with Ford and the SBC family of companies -- two world-class organizations -- to deploy this state-of- the-art network. This will allow Ford to explore new communications applications, such as integrated voice, e-mail and video services," said Rick Moran, Cisco vice president of the Product Technology Marketing Organization for IP Communications.


SBC company�s Callisma, Inc. will work with Ford throughout implementation of the new system.  At the staging facility, SBC engineers test equipment under operating conditions that match those of the customer, allowing SBC companies to optimize equipment and identify and resolve any potential issues well before installation at the customer's location.


SBC companies have provided Centrex voice services to Ford since 1986, and Ford today uses SBC GigaMAN Service, a point-to-point Ethernet package, for high-bandwidth connectivity between its southeast Michigan locations.


SBC Communications Inc.



Johanne Torres is the contributing editor for TMCnet.com and Internet Telephony magazine. Previously, she was the assistant editor for EContent magazine in Connecticut. She can be reached by e-mail at [email protected]


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