It’s taken STC Plc almost four years – as long as Computergram has been around – to show even the first glimmer of convergence between its own telecommunications products and ICL’s computers and the new-won alliance with Northern Telecom Ltd seems to have been the spur. At Communications show in Birmingham last month, STC and ICL made a concerted effort to demonstrate their prowess in Integrated Services Digital Networking technology at home and abroad, and the STC stand actually featured an integrated network hosting products from STC, ICL and Northern Telecom. These included Community Management modules (ICL’s answer to network management), digital Centrex services, and integrated service access from a single terminal.
Pride of place however, went to that integrated voice and data ISDN workstation connected to the public network (CI No 926), running an ISDN application of desktop conferencing and teleprospecting, developed by ICL and based on the company’s Professional WorkStation, PWS. ICL claims a world first for its new product, which was launched in April in the US, and reckons that it has excited considerable interest internationally. Bob Smith, director of ICL’s Network Systems division said that already agreements have been clinched to sell the new ISDN terminal to three US local phone companies – Nynex Corp, Southwestern Bell Corp and Southern New England Telecommunications Corp. Smith described the deals as proof that the new relationship between Northern Telecom and STC is enabling ICL to tap into the US markets, and is optimistic of big US interest in the product.