Review: Polycom Spectralink 8002 Wireless Telephone

Originally published July 1, 2008 at Small Net Builder

Product Polycom SpectraLink Wireless Telephone (8002)
Summary Wi-Fi SIP phone designed for small business use
Pros • Durable construction
• Supports strong Wi-Fi encryption
• Centrally managed provisioning
• Good voice quality
• Reasonable battery life
• WMM works as promised
Cons • Fiddly initial network configuration
• No support for compressed codecs like G.729
• Relatively expensive

Polycom is a leader in the IP communications space. Not only are their longstanding SoundPoint series of desktop IP phones class leaders, but their voice technology can be found in many products under many names.

Seeing a need to expand their product offering to include cordless mobility, Polycom recently acquired SpectraLink, a leading maker of Wi-Fi-based telephony systems, and Kirk Telecom, a leader in DECT-based cordless telephony systems. These acquisitions, now consolidated under the Polycom name, give the company a comprehensive product suite addressing the mobile IP communications needs of various vertical markets.

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An Interesting Week Ahead: New VOIP Hardware

The coming week promises to be very interesting. It’ll be the first full week spent in my office in a couple of months. Thank goodness. I’m tired of all the travel. Also, I have a bunch of new VOIP hardware either awaiting installation or on its way.

Polycom Soundpoint IP650 Continue reading “An Interesting Week Ahead: New VOIP Hardware”

Spectralink 8002 SIP Wifi Handset

The rumor has been confirmed true, I’ll be writing a review of the new Polycom Spectralink 8002 SIP WIFI handset. It arrived Wednesday. I’ll be installing new WMM capable wifi APs in order to facilitate this review. The review itself will eventually appear at www.smallnetbuilder.com.

I’m really looking forward to this. Many thanks to the folks at Small Net Builder and Polycom for making it happen.

VOIP Projects On The Horizon

Now that the NAB show is over I can reclaim some of my personal life and resume a couple of projects already underway, as well as add some new ideas. Here are some highlights of things to come;

GSM Gateway

My exploration of the Portech MV-370 SIP-GSM gateway will continue. I’ve decided that this will happen in two parts. Part one is a backgrounder exploring factors that could motivate a VOIP user to consider adding wireless gateway capability, what problems they might solve and a market overview of the available devices. This part is almost ready for the publisher and will appear at www.smallnetbuilder.com.

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Garrett Smith Explains About Wifi Phones

Kudos to VOIP Supply’s Garrett Smith for plainly explaining the truth about wifi SIP devices, and specifically why Vonage stopped offering them. You can’t put it any more plainly than, “They suck.” The really curious part is that VOIP Supply probably sells more Wifi SIP phones than anyone else.

Others I’ve spoken within the industry have echo’d this feeling about SIP Wifi devices, although not so openly. My own experience with the Hitachi Cable WIP5000 (shown right) bears this out as well.

Vocera Voice Badge

It is interesting that the one exception to this rule is the Vocera VOIP badge, which I encountered deployed at a major local hospital. Speaking with their staff it appears that they love the little device. But it’s not exactly a run-of-the-mill Wifi phone.

In contrast, thus far my experience with the Snom M3 SIP/DECT phones has been very good. I also hope to eventually get access to some of the new Polycom Spectralink & Kirk product for trial later this spring.