I have three types of telephone system in the company I work for: Mitel 3300, Cisco Call Manager, and ancient monster that's soon to be replaced. With the exception of this third category, all these systems are pretty new, and running fairly recent software revisions. I particularly like the Mitel 3300, if I'm being honest - but I'll write about that another time.
What I particularly like is that both the Mitel and the Cisco are so simple to integrate with my corporate directory service. And it's great being able to walk up to any handset in any of our offices around the world, hit "Login", and sign in as me via the global clustering capability.
Ah. Oh. Sorry. Seems I dreamt that last bit. Actually I can't do that. Neither of these models of phone system seems able to cluster properly when more than a handful of milliseconds apart, latency-wise. Even though I'm told that the Cisco Call Manager, in its new release, is a bit more latency-ambivalent, but my maintenance provider tells me that this still isn't enough to let me cluster, say, the London and Delhi systems.
Come on, phone system makers. In 2011 I should be able to point these things at the LDAP interface of my Active Directory world and achieve single sign-on and all those nice (or, in my mind, pretty basic) things.