Ingram Micro to distribute new Philips VoIP phones

SYDNEY: Ingram Micro has signed a deal with Philips to distribute two new dual DECT (Digital Enhanced Cordless Telephony) and VoIP (Voice over IP) phones in the Australian market, which enable users to make or take free phone calls over the internet. 

At ExpoTech, Ingram Micro’s IT and telephony trade show held at the Sydney Exhibition Centre yesterday, the company chose to give the two Philips branded VoIP/PSTN USB DECT phones a soft launch.

“We basically just wanted to show the products to our partners and get the market’s response,” a spokesperson for Ingram Micro told current.com.au

Both handsets enable the user to make or receive normal telephone calls on the landline as well as very cheap or free calls through internet telephony software from anywhere in the home.

The VoIP 433 allows users to make or receive free calls to their network of friends via Windows new Live Messenger software – the successor of MSN Messenger, which boasts more than 200 million active accounts worldwide.
The VoIP 321 does essentially the same thing except its VoIP function utilises the hugely popular Skype software client, with free worldwide calls Skype to Skype.

Both phones have a base receiver that sits next to the PC, enabling consumers to use their DECT phone as normal around the house while taking and receiving internet calls away from the PC, as the handset’s display shows who is on line.

According to the Ingram Micro spokesperson, the products will be launched in the third quarter this year, but they could be available as soon as July.

The VoIP 433 will retail for $159 for the single handset or $229 for twin handsets. For those consumers who prefer Skype, the VoIP 321 will be available for $129 or $199 for twin handsets.

“IP-based telephony is growing in popularity among consumers making use of their home broadband connections for a whole new range of communications options and services,” said Philips Home Communication, vice president and general manager, Nick Dosanjh, at the 2006 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Nevada in January, where the VoIP 433 was first showcased.

“Our new cordless phone will allow consumers the ability to simplify their communications experiences and reduce their costs while providing them with the convenience of having a phone with live messaging, without sitting in front of their PC,” he said.

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