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Multicast Paging with Polycom Phones

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Multicast Paging allows a user to broadcast a real-time, one-way announcement to other users who are subscribed to a paging group. The people receiving the announcement cannot respond to the pager.

Multicast Paging plays the announcement over the Polycom phone’s built-in speakerphone.  When a page is received, the phone automatically plays the announcement while the phone is idle. Depending on the page group, the announcement can be configured to place active calls on hold – this ability to page during an active call is enabled by default, and can be disabled by the user or globally upon request.

Typical Deployment

The Multicast Paging solution is designed for the cubicle or office space where each user has a Polycom phone. This solution is not ideal for locations requiring overhead amplified speakers, such as in warehouse areas where the page would need to be heard over loud machinery.

Paging Groups

Paging Groups (Zones) allow a user to select a pre-defined group of phones to send an announcement to. Paging Groups are synonymous to paging zones in premises-based systems, where a zone is selected to play the announcement.

Unlike a paging zone, which announces through larger loudspeakers in a building, a Polycom Paging Group sends an announcement to specific phones. For example, you could send an announcement to an emergency action team of only three users, allowing you to page just those three users without alerting everyone in the building.

Administrators can configure up to 23 paging groups for use with Polycom Multicast Paging.  Each group is assigned a number (1 to 23), as well as a name (to identify a building, floor, wing, or a department of users).

When a user wishes to place an announcement, they select a group. The user sees both the group name and number when making the selection.

Polycom will display groups in the following order: Default group, Recent group, Emergency group, Priority group, then all others listed in numerical order. If a user constantly uses the same group over and over, the group should be configured as the Default for the phone; otherwise, the user will have to scroll through the list when it was not the last group paged.

TPx’s initial deployment of Multicast Paging includes one Default group as well as the Emergency and Priority Groups. Additional groups can be configured upon request.

Administrator Controls

Administrators have the ability to control who in an organization is authorized to send paging announcements.  This is controlled within the phone configuration files by TPx.

Who Has Multicast Paging?

Any user with a Polycom phone at software version 4.0.1 or greater will have access to Multicast Paging. To check your phone’s software version, go to:

Menu > Settings > Status > Platform > Application > Main

If your phone has an older software version, you’ll need to upgrade the phone software and configure paging. Contact TPx Customer Care to open a service request for this task.

Sending a Page

It’s as simple as placing a phone call. To send a page, follow these easy steps:

  1. Press the phone’s “Paging” button.
  2. Select the group to page.
  3. Press the “Page” button to start the page.
  4. Speak in to the phone to make the page: pick-up the handset, select the speakerphone, or use your headset.
  5. When finished with the page, press the “End Page” button. The page will also end if you press the “New Call” button to place a call.

Receiving a Page

Users in the group receiving the page see a message on their phone’s display which indicates:

  • The user who is sending the page
  • The group the page is for

When receiving a page, the audio will always play over the speakerphone. Neither the headset nor the handset can be used to listen to a page announcement.

Managing Groups

The default group can be configured through the following menu sequence:

Menu > Settings > Basic > Preferences > Paging/PTT Configuration > Group Paging > Default Group (Select the desired group from the configured list)

Some users may wish to disable their phones from certain paging groups.  Phones membership within paging groups can be configured through the following menu sequence:

Menu > Settings > Basic > Preferences > Paging/PTT Configuration > Group Paging > Group Subscriptions (enable/disabled as desired).

Some users may not want to be disturbed by pages when they are on an active call.  This functionality can be managed through the following menu sequence:

Menu > Settings > Basic > Preferences > Paging/PTT Configuration > Group Paging > Accept While Busy (enable/disable as desired).

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