Coming Soon to an iPhone Near You: VoIP

Instant-messaging chat or dissing your Texas Hold ’em opponents on the iPhone just got one step closer. Global IP Solutions (GIPS) has announced the release of its near-ubiquitous voice-over IP (VoIP) developer software for the iPhone engineering crowd. GIPS VoiceEngine Mobile is a development toolkit for iPhone software developers who want to add voice and streaming video to iPhone applications.

"The popularity of the iPhone makes it an ideal platform for developing applications that incorporate quality real-time VoIP, giving consumers real-world communication experiences like in-game, multi-person chat," said Emerick Woods, GIPS’ CEO. According to Steve Rust, vice president of business development for GIPS, "A limited number of development companies are already using the software, but we can’t divulge who is developing what, but we anticipate great gaming, chat and multi-party voice applications to hit the market soon." Rust indicated that the software was available now.

VoIP Applications

Customers who now enjoy the voice features of Facebook and MySpace may soon be able to communicate in the same way when accessing the sites on their iPhones — once a motivated software developer creates the app for iPhone customers. Similar applications that bring voice to instant-messenger software running on the iPhone will also be possible. Also of interest is the possibility that using stable VoIP software on the iPhone would allow users to bypass the AT&T voice network entirely — all that is required would be a VoIP engine and interface. Users could make calls directly over the Wi-Fi network and avoid the tollgate of a cellular provider.

Apple acknowledged that it would allow Wi-Fi VoIP, but not over other networks, as that would violate its exclusivity contract with AT&T. Numerous blogs already detail ways in which users can enable Skype applications, for example, to place and receive phone calls over Wi-Fi and "off the cell network."

Sources revealed that a number of vendors are already using the SDK to develop iPhone applications, but refused to give names. (Steve Jobs announced today that the iPhone application store sold $30 million in apps this month alone.)

GIPS Engines Already in Use

The GIPS technology has been widely adopted already. Big-name vendors such as Yahoo, AOL, WebEx (now a part of Cisco Systems) and Skype use the technology to transmit voice over the Internet. GIPS invented the iLBC codec standard for delivering voice-over IP packets on the Internet, and it claims its voice engine is the most downloaded software worldwide in its category. Currently Nortel, Samsung and others use the GIPS solution to provide high-grade voice over the Net. The company claims, in fact, to have 100 million end-point connections worldwide through its products.

Without a VoIP engine, software engineers would have to solve myriad voice and video issues, such as long latency times, jittery quality and loss of voice packets. Couple that with the bandwidth constraints of delivering streaming applications over Wi-Fi, and engineers could nearly double their product-development cycle. Releasing the GIPS voice engine for the iPhone operating system and programming environment brings applications to market faster.

Rust declined to provide pricing, saying only, "The software is priced on a sliding scale for developers, plus a royalty fee for each application sold."

Via Yahoo

1 Response to “Coming Soon to an iPhone Near You: VoIP”

  1. August 13, 2008 at 1:41 am

    Thanks for the tip! I will have to check this out.

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