Nortel, Polycom Offer SIP Video

Nortel and Polycom team to promote a SIP-based, rich video conferencing solution for next-generation IP broadband networks

May 11, 2004

4 Min Read

LAS VEGAS -- Nortel Networks (NYSE:NT - News; TSX:NT - News) and Polycom (Nasdaq:PLCM - News) will team to promote to enterprises a SIP (Session Initiation Protocol)-based, rich video conferencing solution for next generation IP (Internet Protocol) broadband networks, the companies announced today at Networld+Interop Las Vegas 2004.

Nortel Networks and Polycom have executed an interim Letter of Agreement (LOA) covering the initial terms of this arrangement. They expect to replace the LOA with a long-term agreement within the next few months.

Nortel Networks and Polycom intend to offer a comprehensive, SIP-based solution for multipoint video communication services across multimedia desktop and group conferencing systems to the network core. This will complement the multipoint conferencing services already available with Nortel Networks multimedia communications solutions.

"At, sharing ideas and building improvement upon our successes is dependent on our ability to collaborate and cooperate in the most effective manner," said Brian Farrey, president, Monster WorldWide Technologies. "We share the vision of Nortel Networks and Polycom to create the best means possible for teams to be able to work together and share experiences, unleashing their creative potential to provide better solutions and solve problems as a tightly-knit team.

"We look forward to evaluating the video-enabled, SIP-based collaborative environments announced by the companies and appreciate their adherence to standards, which obviates the pitfalls inherent in proprietary solutions and enables seamless technology refresh in the future," Farrey said.

At Networld+Interop, Nortel Networks (booth #729) and Polycom (booth #1613) will demonstrate how today's heterogeneous enterprise can leverage existing network investments with the latest technology in a 'real world' environment that mixes H.323 and SIP protocols.

These demonstrations will feature Nortel Networks Multimedia Communication Server 5100 and Polycom's VSX 7000 endpoint video system and MGC-50 multipoint control unit/gateway. They will show how seamless integration of real-time communications - including SIP-based video telephony, presence and instant messaging - can help enterprises address the challenge of connecting personal desktop and mobile systems with conference rooms and the core telecommunications network.

"The Nortel Networks-Polycom relationship is a prime example of bringing next generation collaboration solutions to market, and enterprises are beginning to catch on to the ways in which collaborative technologies can dramatically improve the bottom line," said Johna Till Johnson, president, Nemertes Research, a research firm that specializes in analyzing the business value of emerging technology. "Collaboration is changing the way business is done. We expect SIP-based video conferencing to be standard in the majority of companies within three years."

According to a recent Nemertes Research benchmark, increased employee productivity is the top reason to deploy collaboration tools, cited by 42 percent of IT executives as a business driver. Other critical business drivers include quick communication, speeding time-to-market, cost savings and increased sales.

This new endeavor builds on a long-standing relationship between Polycom and Nortel Networks, and provides further evidence of the importance both companies place in integrating voice and video devices and services to create a seamless user experience and simplify deployment and management.

"We are always looking for ways we can help our customers meet their business needs through deployment of converged network solutions," said Malcolm Collins, president, Enterprise Networks, Nortel Networks. "The new services resulting from our relationship with Polycom will allow enterprise customers to reach new levels of productivity while providing a platform for many new and innovative applications in the future. By teaming with Polycom, we can offer our customers another way to increase productivity with highly innovative communications applications."

"Polycom's success and the success of the collaborative communication industry depend on our ability to give customers what they need and demand - a way to leverage their current investments and seamlessly integrate our solutions into a converged communications platform," said Hans Schwarz, senior vice president and chief systems architect, Polycom. "Working with Nortel Networks will enable us to meet this requirement and leverage the tremendous capabilities of the Nortel Networks enterprise offerings."

Nortel Networks Ltd.

Polycom Inc.

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