13 December 2001

Braintree receives grant to develop world-first technology

Data communications specialists Braintree Communications has been offered a $455,000 research grant from Ausindustry to develop its universal network gateway.

The unique gateway offers a fully integrated solution that simplifies retailer’s communications network by consolidating all communication lines including EFTPOS terminals into a single network connection.

In the communication market today there is currently many types of networks for the delivery of telecommunications services like EFTPOS, phone, fax, security, and data. However, to connect to these networks the retailer currently needs network dedicated access devices. There is currently no multi-platform device on the market that can perform this high level of functionality.

“Braintree’s proposes to develop a revolutionary universal access gateway that will enable retailers using any major network to be connected to our multi-platform gateway,” said Chief Operating Officer for Braintree Communications, Mr Peter Hall.

Braintree’s has already designed an award winning network gateway that consolidates retailer’s connections into an ISDN network. This particular gateway has been successfully deployed throughout Australia through Telstra’s ISDN network called Argent.

The proposed universal gateway rwill read and convert multiple data languages and interface to the network. Each network uses different connection mechanisms and the gateway will intelligently recognise which network it is connected to and convert the language as required.

The universal gateway design will ultimately allow for a wireless terminal interface for retail outlets, to remove one of the main cost barriers to seasonally rearranging stores. This means that the retail outlets will have the freedom to move terminals around without having to rewire data cabling to allow for connectivity to the network.

“The gateway offers significant cost savings and user benefits in a number of areas when this technology reaches the marketplace,” Mr Hall said.

Carriers and service providers can now offer a variety of networks best suited to each customer as Braintree’s intelligent gateway will determine what network is connected at the customer premises and will convert the protocols accordingly.

The gateway will also offer remote management and plug and play technology for simple deployment and upgradeability. This reduces the requirement for technicians at the customer premises and downtime in case of network failure. The gateway extends the Braintree philosophy of using a “deploy once – deliver many services” model, which is so attractive to telcos.

“This technology is a win-win situation for all stakeholders, the telco, the service provider and the end user and has tremendous export potential furthering our competitive advantage in this market,” explained Peter.

The R&D grant has capped off a great year for Braintree. Since October Braintree has been involved in business development tours to Asia, Europe and the UK, has won the national Euro High-Tech Competition, recently been short-listed for the final round of the IT Secrets Competition to be announced before Christmas and now the R&D grant.

“2001 has seen us begin to implement our international growth strategy through business development tours, the awards add to our credibility and the grant will enable us to further develop innovative technology for international consumption,” Peter said.

Braintree specialises in the design and development of customised communications solutions for some of Australia’s largest multinational companies including Telstra, Boeing, Ericsson, Cashcard and Jetset to name a few. Braintree has developed solutions to communications problems for the telecommunications, defence, airline, banking and finance industries.


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