Orange Launches Europe’s First Advanced Push to Talk Service

Orange have just launched their Talk Now advanced push to talk service, after nine months of trials in the UK and France. The trials were conducted in association with NHS Lothian, as well as more than 400 French businesses.

Push-to-talk technology allows customers to make calls to a group of handsets for the cost of a standard voice call, with instant communication – much like a walkie talkie.

Orange’s implementation of the service is one of the many variations of push-to-talk that are currently in existence, and is based on technology from Kodiak.

Although not standard, the company is keen to stress the advantages Talk Now has over carrier’s offerings. These include knowing when a contact is free or busy, and being able to record a conference call for sending to a colleague later.

The Treo 600 is the first model supported in the UK, though other models are expected to join it shortly.

Orange on Push to Talk

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Fraser Lovatt

Fraser Lovatt has spent the last fifteen years working in publishing, TV and the Internet in various capacities, and believes that they will be seperate platforms for at least a while yet. His main interests at the moment are exploring where Linux is taking home entertainment and how technology is conferring technical skills on more and more people. Fraser Lovatt was born in the same year that 2001: A Space Odyssey was delighting and confusing people in the cinemas, and developed a lifelong love of technology as soon as he realised that things could be taken apart, sometimes put back together again, but mostly left in bits or made into something the original designer hadn't quite planned upon. At school he was definitely in the ZX Spectrum/Magpie/BMX camp, rather than the BBC Micro/Blue Peter/well-behaved group. This is all deeply ironic as he later went on to spend nine years working at the BBC. After a few years of working as a bookseller in Scotland, ("Back when it was actually a skilled profession" he'll tell anyone still listening), he moved to England for reasons he can't quite explain adequately to himself. After a couple of publishing jobs punctuated by sporadic bursts of travelling and photography came the aforementioned nine years at the BBC where he specialised in internet technologies and video. These days his primary interests are Java, Linux, videogames and pies - and if they're not candidates for convergence, then what is?