Cisco unveiled its Data-Voice-Video Integration Blueprint for the enterprise-wide area network at InterOp in Paris. The Blueprint outlines Cisco's confidence in emerging data-voice-video integration markets. Cisco plans to eventually create a single network delivering voice, video and data using standards-based technologies, according to officials. The Cisco 3600 Voice Port Module, announced at the show, will be the first release in a series of networking products aimed at integrating voice and data networks. The IP-based module allows users to bypass analog phone connections, thus avoiding telephone tolls and long-distance fax charges. It will interface with existing telephones, fax machines and corporate PBXes, which should keep down the cost of upgrading hardware. Cisco's jump on the multimedia/ multiservice networking bandwagon is a necessary evolution, according to Simon Poulton, technical marketing manager at Cisco. He said: "You can see the increasing use of multimedia over corporate networks in the city." Poulton believes the technology will be particularly well-suited to applications like web-based call centres, voice-enabled Email, LAN telephony, and network voice-mail. The Cisco 3600 will come in two versions: The NM-1V plugs into the router and offers one slot for a voice interface card; while the NM-2V has two slots. Three types of voice interface cards will be available: one connects with a phone; another to a PBX; and a third to the public switched telephone network. The Voice Port Module will start at $625 (#390) per port, and the product should ship by the year's end.
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