Applications that enable unified communications — not price or cost savings — should drive the trend towards convergent communications and mobility, according to an official of Nortel Networks.

“Converged solutions have really been taking off for the past 18 months. But from price alone, there really is not much story to tell,” said Steven Hampson, general manager for the enterprise business of Nortel in ASEAN and Pakistan.

According to Hampson, the drive now is to go to unified communications using an Internet Protocol (IP) platform to carry voice and data — and these applications are driving convergent communications, not price.

However, the Philippine market still lacks in appreciation of IP to be more than just a cost-saving solution, said Nortel Philippines enterprise director Armando Pascual.

“Most of our customers look into IP for price advantage,” Pascual said, noting a lack of applications that can maximize the use of IP.

“But there are already headways, like we see banks already embracing convergence in the way they deliver services; we also see the telecom industry driving this,” he added. According to Pascual, the primary concern about mobility among Philippine customers is security.

“What the customers need to understand, however, is that today, the security of the wireless is just as good as the wired environment as long as you implement it correctly,” said Adam Kleemeyer, Nortel’s product and solutions marketing manager for Asia Pacific.

Hampson said “interest in mobility is best at this time,” and added interest among customers is growing as more “interesting” applications emerge enable mobile communications.

“Mobility isn’t just about Internet access; wireless is more than just laptops and data, as so much more are being developed- different types of applications over wireless networks,” he said.

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