One of PGi’s most important innovations as well as a foundational resource for our customers is our industry-leading audio infrastructure. We provide audio conferencing to some of the most important companies in the world, and that audio network has grown and evolved over time, right alongside our other collaboration offerings like iMeet® and GlobalMeet®.
Building a Modern Audio Network
Until a few years ago, PGi’s audio network consisted primarily of what are known as time-division multiplexing, or TDM bridges. TDM bridges, known as “Big Dog” bridges because of their physical size, are voice-only circuits: they cannot transmit data. In addition, redundancy is very difficult to build into a network powered by TDM bridges. When a TDM bridge fails, it requires a physical cable swap or flip of a switch to repair the network. For the last twenty years, TDM audio bridges were the standard throughout the industry, and many audio networks today still rely heavily on TDM technology.
PGi, however, has modernized: today, we utilize Voice-over-IP, or VoIP, audio bridges in our network. VoIP bridges convert voice transmissions into data packets and they are server-based, allowing for better redundancy and easier global distribution than TDM technology. We also wrote all of the software powering our own audio bridges. In comparison to off-the-shelf bridge software purchases, creating our own software allows for easier upgrades, enhancements and patches than our competitors, who are at the mercy of their software vendors.
Providing Reliability, Global Reach and Seamless Integration
PGi’s modern audio network provides a variety of benefits to our customers. The server-based VoIP bridges make it much easier to build redundancy, allowing for easy rerouting of voice data in the event that a bridge fails. On older, TDM-driven networks, a failed bridge can often lead to the complete shutdown of a conference call, leaving customers without service until a cable switch can be made.
Our VoIP technology also empowers PGi’s conferencing solutions on a global scale, giving our customers access to local dial-in numbers, tollshare numbers and ITFS-compatible numbers across the globe. For example, in a conference call with both US and European participants:
- The U.S. participants dial into a U.S. audio bridge;
- The European participants dial into a European bridge, for example in Germany or France; and
- PGi combines the information together in our VoIP backend, leading to a seamless audio experience for all parties.
Finally, PGi’s investment and expertise in our audio infrastructure means that our industry-leading audio is seamlessly integrated across our entire product suite. Instead of having to manage complex connections between multiple vendors, PGi customers enjoy a single source for their audio and web collaboration solutions. The same reliable, high-quality audio that powers our GlobalMeet® Audio conferencing is integrated directly into iMeet and GlobalMeet, ensuring consistent audio performance regardless of your collaboration solution or device of choice.
To learn more about PGi’s industry-leading audio backbone and how it can support your foundational, daily collaborations, stay tuned to the PGi Blog in the weeks ahead. But don’t wait another day for your GlobalMeet Audio demo – it’s free and it’s just a click away!