Push to Talk alive and well

As Sprint begins to phase out the old Nextel network used for that company’s Push to Talk (PTT) solution – made popular with the Motorola devices, but since adding a number of other phones – AT&T is seeking to fill in some of that void with a new offering.

(Sprint plans to continue offering Push to Talk options even after the Nextel network is shut down in favor of Sprint’s CDMA technology.)

Seeing opportunity, AT&T launched a PTT trial in February. That Enhanced Push to Talk solution gained such positive feedback from customers, AT&T said, that it is now doubling the number of business PTT users who may participate in the free trial.

“A feature-rich PTT solution plus an exciting lineup of SAFE mobile devices – it’s an ideal combination,” said Tim Wagner, vice president and general manager of enterprise sales at Samsung Mobile. “Samsung has a long history of working with AT&T, and we’re collaborating again on the launch of AT&T Enhanced PTT. Between AT&T’s service and our PTT phones, which today the support 810F Mil-STD for ruggedness, we’re helping make business communications better and faster for our customers.”

Samsung offers one of five new smartphones compatible with the PTT trial.

One company that is involved with the test is CourierNet, an Atlanta-based courier business. The business model requires dispatchers to be in constant – and time-sensitive – contact with drivers.

One company involved with the AT&T trial is CourierNet, an Atlanta-based courier company with more than 500 drivers and 75 dispatchers.

“Our customers call us and want answers now. The quickest way to find the answers is with PTT,” said Steve Colkitt, IT director at CourierNet. “What separates AT&T’s service from other PTT technology is the speed and quality of the connection. We will invest whatever it takes in a solution that reaches the level of quality we experienced in the trial of AT&T Enhanced PTT.”

There remains a place for PTT solutions in the market, particularly in businesses such as CourierNet’s as well as applications where mobile workers may need to reach the office or each other to identify parts needed in the field or to receive their next assignment.

“We’ve heard what our customers are asking for an enhanced PTT solution that offers great performance, advanced features, integration with mobile apps and interoperability with radio systems – all running on the nation’s largest 4G network,” said Chris Hill, vice president, Advanced Mobility Solutions, AT&T Business and Home Solutions. “We want people to know that AT&T will be not just an option for PTT service, but also one with clear advantages – and that’s why we’re expanding the opportunity for some customers to try the solution today.”

To display its Enhanced PTT solution as well as other wireless technologies, AT&T is holding its Field Force Automation Advanced Technology Forum road show. The event will travel to 27 cities in the U.S. to display the technologies.

The planned schedule:

  • Miami, FL, July 26
  • Atlanta, GA, Aug. 2
  • Houston, TX, Aug.14
  • Chicago, IL, Aug. 14
  • Washington, DC, Aug. 16
  • New York, NY, Sept. 6
  • Denver, CO, Sept. 13
  • San Francisco, CA, Sept. 20
  • Seattle, WA, Sept. 27
  • St. Louis, MO, Oct. 2
  • Dallas, TX, Oct. 4
  • Nashville, TN, Oct. 9
  • Austin, TX, Oct. 11
  • Cleveland, OH, Oct. 16
  • New Orleans, LA. Oct. 18
  • Kansas City, MO, Oct. 25
  • Bedminster, NJ, Nov. 6
  • Boston, MA, Nov. 8
  • Birmingham, AL, Nov. 12
  • Philadelphia, PA, Nov. 13
  • Charlotte, NC, Nov. 15
  • Orlando, FL, Dec. 4
  • Detroit, MI, Dec. 6
  • San Ramon, CA, Dec. 6
  • Indianapolis, IN, Dec. 11


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