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Clemson upgrading telephone service, lines

July 10, 2017

Pic of a new Clemson phonesBy Jackie Todd, Office of University Relations

New handsets, revamped voicemail, mobility apps, video calling and other enhanced functionalities are part of the future for telephones at Clemson University. About 5000 telephones and 6,000 phone lines, including those that feed to offices, labs, alarm systems and call centers will be impacted as university replaces its current telephone system lines and upgrades telephones on and off Clemson’s main campus.

CCIT officials say that they will implement the changes department by department – and departments will get plenty of advanced notice before the switch. Each department will get contacted well in advance of the migration and there will be no additional cost to departments above the current monthly line charges for standard features.

“Our goal is to have the entire university switched over the to the new system by the end of 2019,” said Wallace Chase, executive director for CCIT’s network services department.

Chase said that the current phone system is run and owned by AT&T, which announced its departure from the Centrex line of business in the near future. The new phone system will be run entirely by the university. The phone lines, he said, will use the same infrastructure as the computer network. Currently two complete sets of cabling infrastructure are needed to support the network and voice services. Combining them into one will provide savings for Clemson while increasing features and quality.

The new telephone headsets will include most features that are currently offered and add many more modern amenities. The multiple voice conference systems will also be upgraded to a new system that allows self provisioning, virtual whiteboarding, video and screensharing.

Standard phones will come with a camera, which will enable video conferencing. The video conferencing system that exists in most classrooms will also be integrated into the phone’s capacity.

“The goal with these new enhanced systems is to increase collaboration with modern features while provide cost savings for Clemson,” said Chase.

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