Though it's a wholly owned subsidiary of Cisco Systems, which manufactures the venerable ATA-186, Linksys has introduced two new VoIP products to the market based on technology developed by VoIP customer premise equipment manufacturer — and Cisco competitor — Sipura Technology.
Networking equipment manufacturer Linksys, based in Irvine, CA and a wholly owned subsidiary of San Jose, CA-based technology giant Cisco Systems, is wading into Voice over IP waters for the first time with two new products: a stand-alone two-port telephone adaptor and a router/firewall/VoIP adaptor.
Curiously, though Cisco manufactures the ATA-186, the first VoIP telephone adaptor on the market and still in wide use today, Linksys chose to base its VoIP adaptors on technology developed by Sipura Technology, one of Cisco’s fiercest rivals in the rapidly growing VoIP Customer Premise Equipment market.
A member of the team behind the two new products – the standalone PAP2 and the RT31P2 router – confirms that Linksys “partnered with Sipura” to develop the products.
The ATA-186 was originally developed by Komodo Technology, which was purchased by Cisco in 2000. Much of the same team behind Sipura were formerly with Komodo and left Cisco to form Sipura in May of last year.
When asked about the Linksys-Sipura relationship, Sherman Scholten, Vice President of Marketing for Sipura Technology, refused to comment.
The voice configuration menu for an early-release PAP2 includes exactly the same prompts delivered by the same voice as the menus for all three Sipura adaptors on the market. The only difference betwen the configuration menus for each company's adaptors is that any reference to Sipura has been removed from the Linksys device.
Each of the products is on sale now at Staples. Ironically, though VoIP service provider Vonage dumped the Cisco ATA-186 for a Motorola VT-1005 VoIP adaptor/router, Staples offer comes bundled with Vonage service.
The PAP2 ($69.98) is functionally identical to the Sipura SPA-2000, though it is housed in a new, larger, form factor. The RT31P2 ($99.98) uses SPA-2000 technology for its two VoIP ports, and looks very similar to other standard Linksys routers.