Anand Parthasarathy

Eight Avaya engineers working on-site to ensure that networks are always up

System management tools developed in IndiaEight partners in networking task

Munich: India may not be a contender in the FIFA World Cup football tournament, which began here on Friday, but Indians are helping in key technical positions to ensure that the vital information network linking over 30,000 officials and media across 12 stadiums is up and running throughout the month-long event.

Eight engineers from the India-based operations of Avaya FIFA's official convergence communications provider for the World Cup are in Germany to ensure that the complex wireless and-Internet-based umbilical linking all venues has "100 per cent uptime." Many of the system management tools being deployed for combined ticketing, access control, results processing and media-centred applications were designed at Avaya's Pune-based development centre and also at the partner facilities of Avaya Global Connect in India. Dry runs were conducted in India before they were installed in Germany.

The total information and communication system was successfully commissioned just days before the opening match here. Over 15 terabytes of voice and data traffic one terabyte is one million million bytes or pieces of information are expected to flow over the network before all 64 matches are played, making this the largest sporting communication network ever built.

Crucial role

In a special briefing for The Hindu , Ravi Sethi, the U.S.-based global president of Avaya Labs, the research and development arm of Avaya, said the company's India-based engineers played "a crucial role" in many frontline products from Avaya, which have made it a leading player in Internet-based telephony. The new range of Avaya's One-X desk phones launched globally on Friday and unveiled here they switch seamlessly from land-based calls to Internet and wireless calls also had a strong India connection in their development, he said.

In FIFA networking, Avaya is partnered with eight players, two of whom Citrix and Juniper also have a strong India-based development presence.

Citrix is delivering smartphone applications to each fixed and mobile phone on the FIFA network.

Juniper has supplied security products to help authenticate every official, volunteer and spectator and also protect the network from electronic attacks.

Together Avaya and its partners have enabled FIFA, perhaps for the first time, to manage a large sporting event, where 15,000 officials and an equal number of mediapersons can seamlessly move from the mobile to land phone, PC or laptop while always remaining connected and contactable.