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FCW : October 30, 2013
AT&T found that as users of its traditional Push-to-Talk tech- nologies began to rely more on other cellular solutions, it had to adapt. The company created AT&T Enhanced Push-to-Talk (PTT), which lets users instantly communicate or send alerts to individuals or groups through high-perfor- mance voice-over-IP-based PTT deployed on 3G, 4G, LTE and Wi-Fi networks. The result is a fast, reliable and robust PTT solution that increases productiv- ity and efficiency, said Doug Clark, national director for Enhanced PTT at AT&T, during a webcast June 17 titled "Empowering the Mobile Workforce: Best Practices and New Solutions." "As mobile computing devices have come out, customers that previously used push-to-talk technology started to use cellular technology on smart phones and platforms that legacy push- to-talk technologies were not available for," Clark said. Enhanced PTT combined with field force automation has made the technol- ogy not only viable again but new and improved. For federal agencies, it lets managers monitor field staff and the tasks assigned to them more efficiently by providing near real-time insight into where the employees are and what they are working on; better control because workers in the field can accept and com- plete service requests via mobile devices; and better collection and automation of service requests such as time and materi- als and labor across the entire process to provide extensive reporting data. "Managers of organizations are always looking to become more efficient," Clark said. "Push-to-talk technology is a way to take a three- minute phone call and cut it down to 30 seconds. It s a way to deliver a clear message quickly on situational aware- ness without having to go through the complexity of dialing someone on the other end of that phone." "I think the prevalence of text mes- saging and mobile e-mail has had the biggest influence on the mobile comput- ing revolution," he added. "Those are great tools, but when it comes down to mission-critical communications, you want to make sure that there s no ambi- guity in the message and that s where push-to-talk falls into place." What Enhanced PTT offers Features of Enhanced PTT include sub- second latency, fast call setup times, scalability to accommodate up to 1,000 contracts and talk groups of up to 250 participants, the ability to view the real- time status of talk group members, super- visory override, optional interoperability with land mobile radio (LMR) systems, and SIM card-based technology. "It s a downloadable client, so liter- ally you can download this solution over the air -- over the air being across the cellular network -- have it installed, have it activated and configured and have someone up and running, I would say, in less than 10 minutes," Clark said. Additionally, Enhanced PTT works on a variety of devices including select rugged and non-rugged Android, BlackBerry and Windows Mobile handsets. It also works across AT&T 4G and LTE networks in addition to Wi-Fi and will soon have an open API structure to enable integration with third-party applications. "We look at Push-to-Talk as an D D D D D DI I I I I IG G G G G G GI I I I I IT T T T T TA A A A A AL L L L L LD D D D D DI I I I I IA A A A A AL L L L L LO O O O O O OG G G G G G GU U U U U UE E E E E E AT&T TAKES PUSH-TO-TALK TECHNOLOGY INTO A NEW ERA AT&T Enhanced Push-to-Talk includes centralized administration, presence status and call alerts, working and looking much like cellular-based smart phones. LISTEN/LEARN: For a replay of the webcast, go to: FCW.com/PushToTalk SPONSORED CONTENT Highlights from a recent webcast on mobility ENHANCED PUSH- TO-TALK: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW Here are 7 key features of AT&T Enhanced Push-to-Talk technology: 1. It's based on voice-over-IP. 2. It works on 3G, 4G, LTE and Wi-Fi networks. 3. Built-in AES 256-bit encryption provides added security and pri- vacy in communications. 4. The Corporate Administrator Tool gives managers a single portal through which to monitor contact lists and talk groups on all their devices. 5. The Presence Manager lets users instantly see who's available to talk and to alert anyone who's unavailable to the need for com- munication. 6. It provides the ability to con- nect instantly with up to 250 users at once. 7. Provides optional interoperabil- ity with land mobile radio systems.
September 30, 2013
November 15, 2013