RMIT University Stays Ahead Of Technology Curve With Education Solution From Nortel
5,000 IP Handsets Lay Foundation for Unified Communications, Multimedia Services
MELBOURNE, Australia – RMIT University, one of Australia’s leading educational institutions, is laying the foundation for a multi-million dollar, campus-wide unified communications and multimedia network to serve more than 3,500 staff and 60,000 students using an innovative education technology solution from Nortel* [NYSE/TSX: NT].
Early benefits to RMIT University will include phone number portability to keep staff connected regardless of location on campus; integration with desktop ’soft phones’ to make communication possible without physical handsets; and anytime, anywhere voice and video conferencing from desktop and laptop computers.
RMIT University is also running trials of Nortel’s Multimedia Communications Server (MCS) with an eye toward future implementation of advanced services such as desktop video conferencing and unified communications. Nortel and channel partner Commander Australia are jointly managing network design and implementation.
The new network will be rolled out in phases over the next two years, with the first phase - deployment of 5,000 Nortel IP telephony handsets to the University’s faculty and administration staff - already underway.
“The overall investment includes upgrading the network infrastructure, various campus facilities and other related services. Our aim with this project is to keep the University well ahead of the curve for the new generation of technology savvy students and to support innovation in teaching, learning and research,” says Allan Morris, executive director, IT Services, RMIT University.
“With regards to the network component of this upgrade, what we were not just looking at the technology, but the application of the technology, especially how it can change the delivery model for teaching and research,” Morris said. “For example, we’re currently trialing Nortel’s MCS unified communications product to determine the impact of click-to-call and instant desktop messaging on staff working across multiple decentralised campuses, and how it might change the way they work. Just like e-mail changed behaviour in the workplace, we are keen to see the effects that collaboration, presence and other technologies can have on workplace behaviour and productivity, and what new opportunities they present.”
“Large, distributed organisations like RMIT University are not in the market for off-the-shelf solutions,” said Mark Stevens, managing director, Australia and New Zealand, Nortel. “With ever increasing demands from technology savvy users that expect any device that can connect to a network to be connected and available 24/7, a trend we call Hyperconnectivity, Nortel makes these networks more cost-effective to deploy and easier to manage.”
“At the same time the sheer scale of this rollout calls for products that have been shown to successfully scale to the volume of users and network traffic this environment will undoubtedly generate,” Stevens said. “The challenge for Nortel is to simplify the network to the point where the evolution of an IP communications network to unified communications is completely transparent to the user.”
RMIT University went to tender to upgrade its complete telephony network and short-listed two vendors for the contract. Nortel was chosen for its strong local presence and support network in Australia and the depth of its installed customer base.
The new network will be built around Nortel’s flagship Communication Server (CS) 1000 IP PBX serving 7,000 endpoints and 5,000 Nortel 1140e IP handsets. The CS 1000s will be installed across RMIT University’s three main campuses. Other components will include Nortel’s MCS 5100 for multimedia conferencing and Nortel Contact Center 6.0 for an IP-based help desk infrastructure. Nortel will also provide maintenance, integration and network optimization from the Nortel Global Services portfolio.
The RMIT University network is an example of how Nortel is transforming the educational environment with innovations in unified communications, advanced security and wireless mobility designed to enhance collaboration and enrich the learning experience. Nortel Education Solutions provide secure access to campus resources and enhanced student, faculty and staff interaction using advanced multimedia applications delivered over converged IP networks. Recent education wins for Nortel in Asia include the Macquarie University, VERNet and the University of Western Sydney in Australia, the University of Tsukuba in Japan and the China University of Petroleum.
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Use of the terms “partner” and “partnership” does not imply a legal partnership between Nortel and any other party.
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