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Sprint does not offer VoIP for PCS phones.

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Anonymous
August 31, 2004 10:11:49 PM

Archived from groups: alt.cellular.sprintpcs (More info?)

Yeah, I know. It was a long shot but I was checking out
data plans today and noticed the VoIP service so I asked
a rep. if I could get some SprintPCS phones that are
just VoIP extensions. I was the first person to ask
that question. The answer was "no."

I think someone will eventually do this. My bet is on
Nextel but (with low-latency data service) the hardware
manufacturers might just do it on their own.

--kyler
Anonymous
August 31, 2004 10:11:50 PM

Archived from groups: alt.cellular.sprintpcs (More info?)

Kyler Laird wrote:

> Yeah, I know. It was a long shot but I was checking out
> data plans today and noticed the VoIP service so I asked
> a rep. if I could get some SprintPCS phones that are
> just VoIP extensions. I was the first person to ask
> that question. The answer was "no."

I'm not sure I get the point. What is the benefit, in this case, of
having a Sprint PCS phone as a VoIP extension? I'm also not clear on
what you mean by "extension."

I know that a lot of VoIP services offer call forwarding as well as
"simultaneous ring," where the both your VoIP phone *and* any additional
phone number you specify will be amde to ring at the same time if
someone calls your VoIP number. I know for certain that Vonage and
Packet8 offer this. Might that help?


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Anonymous
September 1, 2004 7:09:59 AM

Archived from groups: alt.cellular.sprintpcs (More info?)

Isaiah Beard <sacredpoet@sacredpoet.com> writes:

>I'm not sure I get the point. What is the benefit, in this case, of
>having a Sprint PCS phone as a VoIP extension?

If I could get a mobile phone to be a VoIP extension, I could do lots of
*really* cool things with it. The price however, should be *very* low.
PSTN costs and taxes are a large part of mobile phone service.

>I'm also not clear on
>what you mean by "extension."

A VoIP endpoint/terminal/device/whatever. Something with an IP address
that speaks IAX/SIP/H.323/...

>I know that a lot of VoIP services offer call forwarding as well as
>"simultaneous ring," where the both your VoIP phone *and* any additional
>phone number you specify will be amde to ring at the same time if
>someone calls your VoIP number. I know for certain that Vonage and
>Packet8 offer this. Might that help?

Not much. Ever try it? The caller gets whichever voicemail answers
first (if a human doesn't answer). That's not good. So what's the
solution? Sure, turn off voicemail on the phones. But now people who
call directly don't get voicemail. Now how do you solve that? Well,
of course you just buy some more incoming VoIP lines that ring straight
to the individual phones (failing to voicemail) and only give out those
numbers.

What do you have now? A very expensive kludge that routes all mobile
calls from PSTN to IP to PSTN and then tries to hide the mobiles'
appearances on the PSTN. But it can't because all of the outgoing
calls are going to display the mobiles' real PSTN numbers. Blech.
What a mess.

It would take very little for a carrier to just make IP interfaces to
their services. No tariff issues, just do it. Similarly, hardware
providers could build phones that use EDGE/EV-DO/... (if the latency
is low enough) to get the same effect. I'd pay $80/month for unlimited
calling through VoIP. That's something we can do right now with enough
(bulky) equipment. If someone shrinks it to phone size and uses one of
the $20 unlimited data plans, it'll be a hit with lots of groups.

And once it happens, we can stop whining about waiting for stuff like
PTT and just whip it up on our own.

--kyler
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Anonymous
September 1, 2004 5:11:17 PM

Archived from groups: alt.cellular.sprintpcs (More info?)

Kyler Laird wrote:


>>I know that a lot of VoIP services offer call forwarding as well as
>>"simultaneous ring," where the both your VoIP phone *and* any additional
>>phone number you specify will be amde to ring at the same time if
>>someone calls your VoIP number. I know for certain that Vonage and
>>Packet8 offer this. Might that help?
>
>
> Not much. Ever try it? The caller gets whichever voicemail answers
> first (if a human doesn't answer).

Actually, I have tried it. I tried both Vonage and Packet8 (ended up
staying with Packet8; they're cheaper). Both had an option that allows
you to specify in seconds, the delay interval for the VM system to pick
up. Using that, I can direct the VoIP system's voicemail to wait till
either before or after the fixed delay interval that SprintPCS has on
their system... if I give it a slightly shorter interval, the VoIP VM
system picks up. If I give it a slightly longer interval, Sprint PCS
picks up. I find Sprint's VM system to be superior to Packet8's so I
let Sprint pick up first, usually.

Yes, I'm paying $20 a month for a landline, but unlike PSTN, this
landline gives me the advantage that I can call Canada as well as the US
without LD charges, in addition to not having to watch the clock to see
if my minute allotment is up. Consdering Sprint's fee for an additional
line sharing my account is $20 anyway, this is a good deal, at least
until Sprint decides to give us all free LD to Canada.

> That's not good. So what's the
> solution? Sure, turn off voicemail on the phones. But now people who
> call directly don't get voicemail. Now how do you solve that? Well,
> of course you just buy some more incoming VoIP lines that ring straight
> to the individual phones (failing to voicemail) and only give out those
> numbers.

This seems unnecessarily complex to me.

> What do you have now? A very expensive kludge that routes all mobile
> calls from PSTN to IP to PSTN and then tries to hide the mobiles'
> appearances on the PSTN. But it can't because all of the outgoing
> calls are going to display the mobiles' real PSTN numbers. Blech.
> What a mess.

Well, there is that problem. Though if I'm really worried about that, I
could either block caller ID to outgoing calls on my cell phone or
enable call forwarding over the web (away from home), and exploit the
quirk in Packet8 that gives forwarded calls the CID information
belonging to my VoIP line, instead of the line I'm calling from.

> It would take very little for a carrier to just make IP interfaces to
> their services. No tariff issues, just do it.

Actually, there are no tariff issues with VoIP *now*. But there's
heated debate about this. VoIP's future in its current all-you-can-eat
incarnation is still very uncertain, and it would be unwise for any
carrier to start rolling out what you propose until those regulatory
issues are ironed out. And considering that wireless carriers tried the
same "we're not a phone company" schpeil a long time ago and lost, I
don't think the same argument will successfully hold water for VoIP.

AT&T is the exception. They've all but abandoned the traditional
consumer market, and bet the farm on VoIP. All this after (very
stupidly, in my opinion) selling off their wireless and broadband units,
leaving them with a dying long-lines core business. At this point, they
have nothing left to lose.


> Similarly, hardware
> providers could build phones that use EDGE/EV-DO/... (if the latency
> is low enough)

That's the problem. Latency in wireless data is very high. Otherwise,
I imagine that the networks would have switched to packetizing their
wireless voice networks a long time ago in order to squeeze every bit
they can out of their current, finite spectrum allotments.



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Anonymous
September 1, 2004 6:10:02 PM

Archived from groups: alt.cellular.sprintpcs (More info?)

I wrote:
>Similarly, hardware
>providers could build phones that use EDGE/EV-DO/... (if the latency
>is low enough) to get the same effect.

I just read something that has me thinking about another angle.
http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/04_36/b389...
Hardware manufacturers might not even need to embrace this idea of
VoIP to the handset. If we get hackable 3G handsets, we can do this
on our own.

SprintPCS, unfortunately, would probably not be the network of choice
for such an attempt. I doubt they'd let someone get *only* an
unlimited data (no voice) plan on something they know is a handset.
(They already use knowledge of the device to strongly discourage
using non-handsets for voice.)

--kyler
Anonymous
September 1, 2004 11:10:08 PM

Archived from groups: alt.cellular.sprintpcs (More info?)

Isaiah Beard <sacredpoet@sacredpoet.com> writes:

>Actually, I have tried it. I tried both Vonage and Packet8 (ended up
>staying with Packet8; they're cheaper). Both had an option that allows
>you to specify in seconds, the delay interval for the VM system to pick
>up. Using that, I can direct the VoIP system's voicemail to wait till
>either before or after the fixed delay interval that SprintPCS has on
>their system... if I give it a slightly shorter interval, the VoIP VM
>system picks up. If I give it a slightly longer interval, Sprint PCS
>picks up.

The interval for SprintPCS to answer has been anything but static for
me. Sometimes it takes quite awhile to even signal that it's ringing.
Sometimes it rings a 2-3 times before VM, sometimes it's *much* longer.
During these times when it takes many rings to go to VM, I *think*
(from later conversations) that it's not ringing on the handset the
entire time. Thus, to give the user a chance to answer you'd have to
let it go until just before it goes to VM. (Sometimes it doesn't ring
the handset at all. That's when I'd really like to not have VM on the
line so that I can just let it ring for a long time if I just want to
get through.)

I sure wouldn't want to design anything around precise timing of such
an imprecise system.

> > That's not good. So what's the
>> solution? Sure, turn off voicemail on the phones. But now people who
>> call directly don't get voicemail. Now how do you solve that? Well,
>> of course you just buy some more incoming VoIP lines that ring straight
>> to the individual phones (failing to voicemail) and only give out those
>> numbers.

>This seems unnecessarily complex to me.

I'd appreciate knowing of a robust alternative. It still wouldn't
provide the more interesting applications though.

>> Similarly, hardware
>> providers could build phones that use EDGE/EV-DO/... (if the latency
>> is low enough)

>That's the problem. Latency in wireless data is very high.

It doesn't have to be. Do we know who has the lowest latency? I was
looking for it awhile ago and it sounded like Sprint was the winner
but this stuff is changing all the time. (I thought about doing voice
over Mobitex years ago.)

>Otherwise,
>I imagine that the networks would have switched to packetizing their
>wireless voice networks a long time ago in order to squeeze every bit
>they can out of their current, finite spectrum allotments.

Nextel (iDEN) *does* packetize their PTT service, right? (Well, sure.
A little latency doesn't hurt at all there.) It at least displays the
promise of what can happen.

--kyler
Anonymous
September 2, 2004 2:26:25 PM

Archived from groups: alt.cellular.sprintpcs (More info?)

Kyler Laird wrote:


>>Otherwise,
>>I imagine that the networks would have switched to packetizing their
>>wireless voice networks a long time ago in order to squeeze every bit
>>they can out of their current, finite spectrum allotments.
>
>
> Nextel (iDEN) *does* packetize their PTT service, right? (Well, sure.
> A little latency doesn't hurt at all there.)

Actually, Nextel's service is anything BUT packetized. iDEN PTT uses
the same TDMA modulation as full-duplex, only at 1/2 the bit rate (and
because it's also half-duplex, you get a theoretical 75% savings on
spectrum use).

All the other PTT services offered by other carriers are through SIP -
but we've seen how Verizon can't seem to get it right, and Sprint would
rather not make a big deal of their offering even though it's somewhat
better.




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Anonymous
October 16, 2004 3:08:05 AM

Archived from groups: alt.cellular.sprintpcs (More info?)

Isaiah Beard <sacredpoet@sacredpoet.com> writes:

>Actually, I have tried it. I tried both Vonage and Packet8 (ended up
>staying with Packet8; they're cheaper). Both had an option that allows
>you to specify in seconds, the delay interval for the VM system to pick
>up. Using that, I can direct the VoIP system's voicemail to wait till
>either before or after the fixed delay interval that SprintPCS has on
>their system...

I just verified that SprintPCS does not have a single fixed delay
before going to voicemail. If I'm making a call on my SprintPCS
phone, incoming calls go to voicemail immediately.

--kyler
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