banner-ad

3CX Android SIP Phone: SipAgent in a Previous Life?

I was just harmlessly reading about Android based SIP soft phones when I came across an interesting comment related to SipAgent product:
SipAgent has found a new home and will live on as 3CXPhone. It has the same features (and more), is still free, but is professionally supported by 3CX.
To read more user comments click here:
http://www.androidzoom.com/android_applications/communication/sipagent_bhoq.html

Checkout the demo of the 3CX Android phone in a previous life as the SipAgent product below.



My expectation is that with 3CX marketing and financial muscle behind the 3CX Android Phone (aka SipAgent) it will move ahead. So, welcome to a free, Android based SIP soft phone!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-IzDkVWhWZM

Blink: The Best SIP Client in the World?--First Screenshots of Windows Version!

Blink is a SIP client you shouldn't miss! Refined, Opensource, great features and FREE! Currently there is a Mac version and a Windows version is due "soon".

To see more screenshots:
http://icanblink.com/screenshots-ms.phtml

Running on Win7:
http://twitpic.com/202j52

Read my interview with AG Projects/Blink CEO:
http://windowspbx.blogspot.com/2010/06/blink-sip-client-for-masses-that-takes.html

Wouldn't You Like An Email When All Gateway Lines Are Busy? pbxnsip Does It Again!



I continue to be impressed with the features found in the Windows-based phone system pbxnsip! Just today I got a notification that all the Lines on a gateway were in use--VERY proactive!

This along with 15 other common phone system scenarios can alert the pbx admin by email of a situation that needs attention. pbxnsip also allows you to monitor it using industry standard SMNP alerting tools for many indicators.

We continue to be impressed with the pbxnsip phone system after over a year selling it and a lot of systems in the field. Pleasant surprises pop up almost every week!

Blink: A SIP Client for the Masses? (That Takes Out Communicator and Skype With One Swipe?)

A little while ago I was looking for a SIP client that included desktop sharing ability along with voice. After using Microsoft Communicator's increadibly smooth-to-use desktop sharing feature for a couple weeks I was hooked on 1-click desktop sharing integrated into the client. Since we sell and implement a SIP based phone system (pbxnsip) I thought it would be great to have a Windows-base SIP client with features like Communicator. You know--there are not too many SIP clients that do desktop sharing? Well, in my search I stumbled across the Mac-based Blink. The website advertised "Windows version coming soon!" So I couldn't ignore! But I must admit I got sidetracked from the desktop sharing feature after looking at this impressive SIP client!  




What is so Impressive About Blink? 
The level of attention to detail is hard to miss: The GUI is crisp, clean, and works very naturally and intuitively. (The UI is very similar to Office Communicator but, If I remember correctly, Ag Projects CEO said he hasn't even seen Communicator!) Even the audio sounds and feedback is just elegant. Secondly you can just start using Blink and do quite complex things without a help file: such as start a multi-party voice conference using drag and drop! This ability to "surface" functionality is something that I think is so important-- and Blink seems to get that. Blink also has a bunch of distinctive features: HD Audio, multi-party audio conference (which lets you easily do things like mute a conference caller with a single click and more), handle multiple audio conferences at the same time, multi-party Instant Message, Desktop Sharing and more. Finally, Blink is a based on the very solid SIP Simple SDK so it is very stable and new features can easily be implemented. And remember all this comes for FREE. 

An Interview with Blink CEO, Adrian Georgescu  
I actually got a MacBook just to test Blink! (well actually, it was the last straw...I already had decided it was time to test a Mac!) After testing Blink I was as impressed with the actual product as I was with the website feature list and screen shots and had some more questions about the product. Adrian Georgescu the CEO of AG Projects, which is the maker of Blink, generously setup a demo and time to talk. 

Matt: What is the goal for Blink? 
Adrian: Ease of use is #1 goal. When my father can use it we achieved a major milestone...We are after a 1 click install experience. We aim to have a product that is easy to setup and use by regular consumers without knowledge in the underlying technology. The same software is however flexible enough to provide a powerful communication tool for the more advanced users. 

Matt: Blink Looks Like Office Communicator. Is that who you are after? 
Adrian: Actually I have never seen Communicator. No. We see Blink as a SIP based Skype alternative. Blink can be used as a SIP endpoint for any SIP based solution. Secondly, we have the whole back end SIP infrastructure to provide a fully blown service that scales to serve millions of users. We are able to provide a complete turn-key solution to operators who wish to provide a SIP service.

Matt: With all the buzz around social networking do you plan to add that into Blink? 
Adrian: Do what you do good. We don't see this as a differentiating feature, we wish to stick to our core competence and build the best SIP client in the world rather than an average, do it all general-purpose client. Others, can certainly contribute if they want and extend it. The Open Source code is available at http://icanblink.com/download.phtml.

Matt: Do you plan a mobile edition? 
Adrian: At this moment we study what option offers a future-proof path. Nothing decided yet, mobile world is right now going through major changes and APIs are changing very often. 

Matt: I understand Blink was started in Dec 1, 2009. Do you feel Blink is stable? 
Adrian:  We believe is very stable. There is a very strong foundation under Blink. It is based on a proven SDK. We have been in the SIP business since 2002 and we have been successful in writing code that resists time...no wasted code so far.

Matt: I'm interested in the Windows version of Blink. Will features like desktop sharing be taken out of Windows edition of Blink? 
Adrian: No worries. Desktop sharing in Blink is using VNC and it will be working in Windows too.

Matt: Video is currently not in Blink. Why not and will that be a big undertaking? 
Adrian: There is a very strong foundation under Blink...new features do not require a new foundation. Blink supports SIP in general-not just voice/voip. The ability to add media types is easy-- would estimate is little effort to add video. Our efforts now are directed to porting Blink to Windows and Linux, video will be added after this milestone is reached. It is also the right moment because of the VP8 royalty free codec provided by Google. This matches better the Blink DNA...

Matt: Any final comments? 
Adrian: We are making an easy to use client for the masses that will be a future proof product based on SIP. We will be presenting the product in the coming months. We expect it to increase uptake on Windows version. If you own a Mac I would suggest you head right over to http://icanblink.com and test drive Blink. If not, keep an eye on Blink's website.

ps-- Keep your eye on this SIP client because it is going places. The Windows edition is just around the corner. Also, did I hear somewhere that Blink is shooting for world domination? ;-) 

is-phone Videoconferencing SIP Softphone

Video of a SIP soft phone that appears to video conference pretty nicely. But can a mere mortal buy it? I'm not sure. ;-)

snom Releases Extension Microphones for Their MeetingPoint OCS & SIP Conference Phone

snom now has extension microphones available for their very well-built MeetingPoint conference phone. According to snom's website this will allow you to extend the MeetingPoint's reach up to 70M!! (whoa! thats bigger than our conference room!) Also remember that the snom MeetingPoint works as a SIP and OCS endpoint at the same time.



See snom webpage:
http://www.snom.com/en/products/accessories/extension-microphones/

You may have interest in the First Impression Video Review we did last August of the MeetingPoint conference phone below. I'll try to do a 1 Year Later Review--we love the unit.



Kerry Garrison also did a review of the MeetingPoint available here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=obgxEHRKEoc&feature=related

Windows Based Phone System Roundup: The Windows Phone System List

Here is an informal list of Windows based phone systems that I came up with in my internet research. They are in no particular order and I have not tested each one. I have not even installed some of these so this is in no way a recommendation of these products.  In the interest of transparency our consultancy recommends, sells, implements & supports pbxnsip and sells & supports 3CX.

Commercial Products
Communigate

pbxnsip
pbxnsip
3CX
3CX
Axon Virtual PBX
NCH
OCS/CS 2010
Microsoft
NetVanta UC
Objectworld
PCBest PBX
PCBest
BizPBX
Yeastar
Brekeke
Brekeke
miniSipServer


Open Source Products
AsteriskWin32

YATE

FreeSwitch

CallButler


If you know about another Windows based phone system product I would be glad to here about it. Also, if you have any feedback on any of the listed products, once again, feedback in the form of comments would be very welcome!

Aha! Windows Mobile is NOT Dead? Motorola Releases WM 6.5.3 Phone

In a move that shows Motorola doesn't feel everyone wants an iPhone (ahem)...they have released a phone based on Windows Embedded Handheld. At the beginning of 2010, Microsoft released an update to Windows Mobile: Version 6.5.3. It has been renamed Windows Embedded Handheld. It appears that Motorola home screen has some of the characteristics of the coming Windows Phone 7.

Take a look:
http://www.motorola.com/web/Business/microsites/US-EN/ES400/index.html

OpenSource Windows Phonesystem? Freeswitch

It looks like OpenSource is coming to the Windows PBX world! I was notified that FreeSWITCH has a native Windows edition. I haven't installed or played with it but take a look at the above screenshot and investigate.

I guess my opinion is about Free phonesystems is tempered by past experience but here are some of my thoughts about phone system, free and small business:

-the actual phone system is a small part of the cost of a solution.
-the handsets, gateways and implementation is the bulk of the cost.
-for a 20 user system a commercial grade Windows PBX is around $2000 and you'll likely fritter $2000 trying to figure out the free--so is opensource worth it for small business?

I'm not sure. But if you want to take a look, browse over to:

http://www.freeswitch.org/

3CX Launches Free 3CXPhone for Android


What is this with Android? ;-) Is Android the future of deskphones? Cell phones? Megaphones? ;-)

I haven't played with this SIP softphone and I haven't seen any screenshots either. But take it for a spin:
http://www.3cx.com/blog/3cxphone/android/

snom M9: Worlds First DECT Wireless Office Communication Server Phone--Available in USA Later This Year!

snom has released the snom M9 outside the USA and I am eagerly awaiting it's arrival here! Why?

-It is the worlds FIRST OCS compatible portable phone
-It is also a standard SIP phone that works with your favorite IP PBX
-USB built into the handset for future expansion (and charging?)
-snom touts enough memory for future firmware enhancements

It also has some improvements over the existing snom m3 that I welcome:
-Redesigned keypad that appears more finger friendly
-Backlit keypad is a great improvement
-Improved firmware



Read more details about the snom m9 Click Here:

This unit looks like something I'd like to get in my hand! (no pun)

Also, don't forget that snom has a complete line of very affordable OCS compatible voip phone handsets for the desk also.

One thing about snom's entire line of OCS phones is that they use the g711 codec and not the OCS native Rtaudio codec. I'm not sure if snom 8xx series phones have the processor power to run rtaudio but I hope that snom is investigating moving in this direction.

I Got a Glimpse of Microsoft Communicator 2010 Logo--The Final Office 2010 Logo to Join the Crowd

We are trying to decide: Do we implement OCS 2007 R2 now? Or wait for Microsoft Communication Server 2010? (or whatever number it will be ;-) In my research to find out when the Communication Server Beta will be released I came across what appears to be the new Communicator logo! It was on a screen shot of the new Communicator.

See more details here:

http://www.microsoft.com/communicationsserver/cs14/en/us/communicator.aspx

Another Windows Mobile SIP Softphone: Does This One Cut the Mustard?

Harry Brelsford over at Telephonation tipped me off to a Windows Mobile SIP softphone that I was not aware of in the Telephonation Forum. The AdoreSoftphone. If haven't tested it so take a look and give me feedback on what you think.

Check OCS Insider Article About Using OCS In The Small Business Market

Controlling Windows Phonesystems Using API's and TAPI

Just today I got a request from someone that wanted some direction on how to use the 3CX Phone System API to trigger calls from another application. On checking here are some good resources to get you started integrating your Windows Phone System with other applications:

 

pbxnsip Windows Phone System:


CSTA: https://www.pbxnsipsupport.com/index.php?_m=knowledgebase&_a=viewarticle&kbarticleid=385
https://www.pbxnsipsupport.com/index.php?_m=knowledgebase&_a=viewarticle&kbarticleid=689

CDR to Microsoft SQL: http://forum.pbxnsip.com/index.php?showtopic=3268&hl=

CDR to MySQL: https://www.pbxnsipsupport.com/index.php?_m=knowledgebase&_a=viewarticle&kbarticleid=389

Excellent Article on TAPI Installation for pbxnsip & in General:
https://www.pbxnsipsupport.com/index.php?_m=knowledgebase&_a=viewarticle&kbarticleid=480
pbxnsip TAPI Driver Download:
http://www.pbxnsip.com/download-software/software.php

 

3CX Phone System:

HTTP API: http://www.3cx.com/blog/docs/3cx-http-api/

TAPI Driver: http://www.3cx.com/blog/releases/3cx-assistant-tapi/

 

Both 3CX and pbxnsip have a ton of ways to integrate. pbxnsip has Standard expression IVR’s, SOAP, live logging, CDR to IP address and more.

Have fun!