Wednesday, May 10, 2006

BT Outlines Fixed-Mobile Convergence (FMC) for Business, Selects Alcatel

BT announced plans for a Fixed- Mobile Converged service for large businesses and multi-national companies both in and outside the UK. This new solution will utilize Wi-Fi as the interface to the fixed network in key locations such as the office, home, and BT Openzone hotspots. This follows the recent launch of BT Fusion intelligent fixed - mobile phone for consumers and small businesses.

BT said it will be building the solution over the coming months and will be undertaking live pilot implementations with corporate customers in early 2007.

The new "Enterprise FMC" service will enable a mobile handset with PBX type functionality at home, in the office and at BT's Openzone hotspots. The service will link to BT's 21st Century network, providing intelligent routing of calls. By linking information from a user's calendar, the network will ensure that, for example, if the user is in a meeting, an incoming call will be automatically diverted to voicemail, reverting to normal service when the meeting ends. Alternatively, certain pre-selected callers can be either routed directly to the user or to a pre-specified alternative colleague in the company.

As prime contractor, Alcatel will lead the design, integration (including a number of third-party components) and testing of the end-to-end solution. Alcatel will supply key platform elements from its leading Managed Communication Services (MCS) portfolio and will also ensure that the solution integrates seamlessly into BT's enterprise customer sites.

The Alcatel-primed consortium includes Lucent Technologies (who will provide the Lucent VPN Firewall and VitalAAA security products and design team specialists).

BT is in parallel testing a number of different dual mode mobile handsets and discussions are well advanced with these manufacturers on supplies for launch.


  • In June 2005, Alcatel confirmed that it had been selected as the lead contractor for BT Fusion, previously known as "Project Bluephone", the fixed/mobile service from BT. Alcatel leads a consortium that includes Ericsson, Inventel, IVT, Lucent, and Motorola. Alcatel said its role as prime contractor includes project management as well as extensive development and integration work in BT labs, and interoperability testing between the consortium vendors.

  • BT Fusion uses the UMA standard, which has now been formally released and accepted into the 3GPP standards group for generic radio access. UMA allows BT to carry GSM signalling and telephone calls over the public Internet using DSL access, with a Bluetooth interface. BT Fusion will be technology agnostic and in time, will work across other standards including WiFi and SIP.

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