MultiPath technology provides a failsafe for Ooma AirDial—a POTS replacement solution

Thad White profile image December 15, 2023 | 2 min read

Every second counts in an emergency. So when you choose a solution like Ooma AirDial® to wirelessly connect analog phone lines for life-safety and building protection systems such as fire-alarm panels, elevator phones and burglar alarms, it’s important that it works quickly to summon help.

This is why MultiPath technology is a game-changer and sets Ooma AirDial apart from other Plain Old Telephone Service (POTS) replacement solutions currently on the market. Unless you work in the telecom industry, MultiPath technology can be a lot to wrap your head around, so I’ll start by first explaining why we created AirDial.

The rising popularity of mobile phones and internet calling through Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) has caused traditional copper wire telephone lines to become outdated. There are many reasons behind this “copper sunsetting” of the traditional POTS analog lines, but the bottom line is that they’ve become very expensive, and service isn’t as reliable as it once was. And in some areas, POTS lines are no longer being offered. This is a huge problem for legacy safety devices that depend on those lines.

What is AirDial?

Ooma AirDial is POTS line replacement solution. Running on a secure and reliable network, AirDial imitates a standard POTS analog line, but it’s really a digital internet connection. Moving to digital technology brings many benefits for customers—most notably lower service costs and expanded features, including easy-to-use management tools.

How does MultiPath technology back up AirDial?

Let’s switch gears for a second with an analogy.

Say you have an 18-wheel truck with two tires on each side of each axle to evenly distribute the weight of your cargo. If you’re driving on the highway and a tire blows out on the tractor, you may not even notice because its twin tire keeps the truck rolling forward. And you almost certainly won’t spin out.

MultiPath technology is similar because it creates two simultaneous connections from AirDial to the Public Switched Telephone Network. One connection is from AirDial’s wireless LTE network, and the other is from the AirDial customer’s existing broadband network. MultiPath continuously monitors both connections and judges which one is the best link. If one connection fails, the other is automatically and instantly used. This means that calls in progress will continue traveling along uninterrupted.

While other POTS replacement solutions traditionally offer a backup feature, theirs is less elegant, more time-consuming and may not be as safe as MultiPath. That’s because they typically designate one link as the primary connection and another link as secondary. The secondary connection only kicks into action when the primary connection fails. If the primary connection goes down during a call, that call will drop and must be reconnected. This can take a full minute or more. Not an ideal situation at any time, but especially troublesome during emergency calls from an elevator, a fire alarm panel or a campus blue-light call box.

Learn more about AirDial and MultiPath technology

Find out more about how Ooma AirDial offers an affordable way to sever your ties to POTS lines.

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