BT unveiled BT Fusion Wi-Fi, a fixed-mobile convergence solution that aims to lower communication costs in small to medium enterprises. The system involves directing calls over broadband connections via private company WLANs and about 2,000 BT Openzone public access hot spots.
Subscribers to the BT Business One Plan pay as little as 5p for a 60 minute call. The plan requires users to buy a Ã‚Â£15 dual GSM/Wi-Fi mobile phone — currently, BT only offers Nokia 6136 and Motorola A910, but plans to make Samsung’s P200 available by January — for each user and pay 15p per minute for mobile calls to other BT mobile users and 25p for mobile calls to mobile phones connected to other carriers. Each Fusion handset comes preloaded with software that supports unlicensed mobile access or UMA.
Steve Andrews, managing director of BT mobility and convergence, expects no dropped calls with the system — if the user goes out of original coverage, the call will revert to GSM before connecting to the next available access point. The company plans to test a corporate variant of the service, which would involve utilizing a specially configured mesh wireless network and integrating with IP private branch exchanges.