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Verizon, Columbia University Collaborating

Verizon, Columbia University Collaborating
On Voice-Over Internet Protocol Technolog

By Ronald Roach

With expectations of improving telephone service with technology that made the Internet possible, Verizon Laboratories — a research arm of telephone giant Verizon Communications — is partnering with the Department of Computer Science at Columbia University to conduct two research projects using voice-over Internet protocol (VoIP) technology, or packet telephony, according to officials.

VoIP uses the same packet-switching technology employed to transmit data over the Internet to send voice phone calls over the Internet or telecom networks. The research is under the direction of Columbia’s VoIP expert, Dr. Henning Schulzrinne. The two projects — funded by Verizon Laboratories — will be in areas related to the overall development of packet-switched telephony.

“This project allows us to work on real-world problems for a very large-scale deployment, exploring how VoIP systems can move from laboratory and small-scale systems to serving a leading telecommunications provider,” says Schulzrinne.

One project will be dedicated to exploring security technologies, while the other pertains to research in the area of Presence — a messaging technology that lets users or devices quickly find each other, no matter where they are. Officials say the results of both of these projects will have a large impact on future services offered by soft switches, which are packet switches used to provide basic and advanced voice telecommunications services. Verizon, which serves 47.4 million voice and data customers across the United States, has begun to deploy these switches in some parts of its national service region.

“We are excited to work with Columbia, Professor Schulzrinne and the graduate students there on a technology that holds such promise for us at Verizon and for our customers now and in the future,” says Stuart Elby, vice president of network architecture and enterprise services at Verizon Laboratories.

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