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Cutting Lines

Giving new meaning to the term "mobile phone"

A simple menu choice allows your business calls to simultaneously ring your office desk set, home phone, cell phone, even your portable PC or PDA. That's one benefit of Toshiba's new Mobility Communications System (MCS) and its phone client software.

Another is cordless calling. A trip to the lunchroom or a staff member's office doesn't have to mean missed calls when you can take your phone with you. That's more than just a minor convenience when your office is a factory floor, hotel, department store, automobile lot or construction site.

MCS is an IP (Internet protocol) telephony server that broadcasts voice calls anywhere your wireless LAN can broadcast data. It also offers higher bandwidth today than 3G cellular networks will ever achieve and a data pipe large enough for videoconferencing. Its universal inbox provides one home for all your voice, fax, e-mail, IM or SMS messages, and any data files attached to them.

MCS isn't cheap; a configuration capable of covering 25 employees costs around $30,000. Expect prices to soften as standards-based VoWLAN products follow from other providers.

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This article was originally published in the October 2003 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Cutting Lines.

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