Kodiak Powers New Orange Push To Talk "Talk Now" Service
Kodiak and Orange Deliver First Service of Its Kind to Europe
Jan. 13, 2004 – Kodiak Networks, Inc., the leading innovator in packet-switched wireless voice systems, today announced its relationship with Orange, one of the world’s largest communications companies, to deliver an advanced press-to-talk-style service across its European operations.
This first-of-its-kind conversational voice and messaging service is being marketed by Orange under the name Talk Now(TM).
Talk Now(TM) is an integrated instant voice, conferencing and messaging service with the added benefit of a real-time availability icon, so subscribers can see who is available to take a call and who is not. The service is already being trialed by corporate customers in the UK, including IBM.
Orange is one of the largest multi-national wireless operators in the world, operating in 19 countries and serving more than 46 million customers in Europe, Asia, Africa, the Middle East and the Caribbean. Known for innovation, Orange is the first international wireless carrier to add this kind of service to its existing GSM network.
The Kodiak RTX(TM) System enables Orange to establish its Talk Now(TM) service quickly and cost effectively and to bring the real-time voice and messaging services over cellular to millions of European customers for the first time. Orange initially will deploy Talk Now(TM) using Kodiak RTX Systems in the UK and France.
Talk Now(TM) will be launched by Orange in 10 countries this year, starting with the UK and France in Q2 2004.
Alongside the standard press-to-talk service functionality available in the US, Talk Now(TM) will also allow Orange customers to:
– create buddy lists that can be used to facilitate instant conference calling
– know when contacts are available to talk and when they are busy
– speak to or message contacts who have indicated they are available
– record a conference call and send it to others if they are not available
– send a voice message to other Talk Now(TM) users at the touch of a button.
Kodiak Networks was selected by Orange after a comparison of alternative network equipment suppliers completed last year. Orange favored the superior performance, rich feature set and early availability of the Kodiak offering.
Mr. Solomon Trujillo, CEO of Orange stated: “As we are the first to launch in the world we are offering something no other company can offer. Talk Now(TM) provides the business community with an immediate and reliable way to better manage teams of people within an organisation. It addresses a real need amongst businesses to disseminate or communicate time critical information quickly and efficiently. The service also provides consumers with an ideal way to keep in touch with friends and family by making it easy to instantly communicate with each other as a group at the touch of a button.”
Kodiak concurrently announced the commercial availability of its GSM family of Real-Time Exchange(TM) (RTX(TM)) Systems applicable to the worldwide GSM wireless market. Kodiak announced the availability of its CDMA family of RTX Systems last Fall, making it the only company offering advanced voice and messaging systems that work over multiple networks.
Mr. Craig Farrill, CEO of Kodiak Networks adds, “We are delighted to have the opportunity to serve Orange as the provider for its Talk Now(TM) system. Our solution will enable Orange customers to have instant voice conversations with other individuals or groups throughout the Orange international network. This marks the first time that this kind of service over GSM is commercially available in Europe on a multi-national basis. It also is the first deployment of the GSM version of our Kodiak RTX System.”
Mr. Andrew Seybold, managing partner of industry research firm, The Outlook 4Mobility, addresses the positive implications of this announcement: “This is the first commercial deployment of its system that Kodiak has announced,“ Seybold said. “Now that people can experience the Kodiak RTX System in a public setting, they will fully comprehend the power and distinctiveness of this solution. I predict that other carriers will soon follow Orange’s lead and embrace the Kodiak system.”
For the first time, international instant voice calls can be made between Orange networks in different countries, utilizing Kodiak Networks systems. Now, when an Orange customer travels across Europe, he or she can maintain access to the features and functionality of their Talk Now(TM) service through their home network, providing international roaming. In any Orange coverage area where a customer has voice access, the service will work the same way as if the customer were calling from their home country, providing a truly seamless experience.
Kodiak Networks announced the availability of the CDMA version of its Kodiak RTX(TM) System in November 2003. With today’s announcement of the commercial availability of the Kodiak RTX(TM) System for GSM networks, Kodiak can now provide systems to virtually any wireless carrier in the world using either of the systems or a combination of the two versions. Kodiak is the only integrated voice, conferencing and messaging supplier, which enables wireless carriers to offer this kind of service across a multi-network environment, such as integrated GSM and CDMA.
Kodiak Networks (www.kodiaknetworks.com) is the leading innovator in packet-switched, wireless voice systems for carriers worldwide. The Kodiak Real-Time Exchange(TM) System is a breakthrough in P2T communications. It can be integrated into any existing digital cellular network, enabling carriers to increase minutes of use (MOUs) and average revenue per user (ARPU), retain customers longer and attract new customers without costly retrofits to network infrastructure.
Kodiak Networks has partnerships with several global providers of handset technology. Founded by luminaries in cellular technology, Kodiak Networks has numerous patents pending in the areas of high-speed, packet-switch fabric; signaling, call control and voice processing subsystems; service provisioning; and other real-time systems technologies. Kodiak Networks is privately funded by Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers (www.kpcb.com) and Redpoint Ventures (www.redpoint.com), two of the world’s leading venture capital firms. Headquartered in San Ramon, California, Kodiak Networks has additional facilities in Plano, Texas, and Bangalore, India.