Note: Being a strong Polycom supporter (Certifed Reseller) I think this is big new. I am just sitting here drooling on myself while reading this. The more and more I think about the possiblities if they pull this off right. I hope with all this video talk along with Asterisk, Polycom will also integrate there video presense solutions to work with Asterisk in some way. Anyway, I like what I am reading and look to see how it is executed.
Polycom, Inc., the world's leading provider of unified collaborative communications solutions, and Digium Inc., the Asterisk company, today announced a multiyear agreement to develop and market integrated, SIP-based telephony solutions for small and medium-sized businesses which will give SMB customers a tightly integrated, standards-based solution with simplified provisioning, broad support for Asterisk telephony features on the Polycom phones and the delivery of new capabilities such as Polycom's breakthrough HD Voice quality.
"We look forward to expanding our offering and furthering our reach in the marketplace through this partnership with Polycom," said Mark Spencer, President and CEO at Digium. "The interoperability between Asterisk Business Edition and Polycom SIP phones ensures flexibility and broad support for Asterisk telephony features."
Polycom's award-winning SIP desktop and conference phones will be combined with Digium's Asterisk Business Edition, the professional-grade version of Asterisk, the industry's first open source PBX. Through the combined Digium and Polycom offering, SMB customers will have access to advanced telephony solutions which will be more affordable compared to proprietary systems. Additionally, the new offering will give customers the control, rapid feature development and deployment, and rich feature base that the Asterisk open source community and its partners provide. Per the agreement, Polycom will also be the preferred VoIP phone provider for Digium solutions.
"Open source PBX's are gaining significant momentum in the market place because they are easy to deploy and they offer partners and customers the ability to use it as a development platform for customized solutions," said Will Stofega, research manager, VoIP Services at IDC. "The combination of Polycom's broad family of high quality desktop and conference phones and Digium's low-cost, feature-rich platform will deliver a strong integrated VoIP telephony solution to the SMB market."
"The open source approach is an important part of the current IP PBX market and we want to support this community with the renowned voice quality and intuitive user interface of Polycom's phones," said Sunil Bhalla, senior vice president and general manager of voice communications at Polycom. "Through our co-development agreement, Polycom SIP phones will be easy to deploy and manage in a Digium Asterisk Business Edition environment and support the business telephony features to meet the needs of the SMB market."
As part of the agreement, Digium will modify the Asterisk graphic user interface (GUI), Asterisk Business Edition application and Asterisk OS to tightly integrate with Polycom's line of SIP-based desktop and conference phones. The co-development work will enable simplified provisioning and support for advanced telephony features like shared line appearance, XML microbrowser plugins and Polycom HD Voice. Polycom and Digium will also work together on joint marketing initiatives and joint selling through common channels. Polycom phones will also be the exclusive VoIP phone in Digium's Asterisk Appliance Developer Kit (AADK).
Digium Asterisk Business Edition
Asterisk Business Edition is the professional-grade version of Asterisk, the industry's first open source PBX. The Asterisk Business Edition provides tested reliability of critical functions and features, and is tailored for small and enterprise business applications. It supports up to 40 simultaneous calls with upgrades to 240 calls available. Asterisk Business Edition includes a supported rPath Linux distribution with an enhanced installer, an Asterisk technical manual and a quick-start guide, making Asterisk even easier to install, configure, and use.
Polycom's SIP-Based Phones
Polycom offers a complete line of SIP-based desktop phones, including the SoundPoint IP 650 with HD Voice, SoundPoint IP 601, SoundPoint IP 501, SoundPoint IP 430, SoundPoint IP 301, and SoundPoint IP Extension Modules. The line also includes the SoundStation IP 4000 which is a SIP-based conference phone within the award-winning, triangular-shaped SoundStation line, which have become an icon for voice conferencing quality in businesses around the globe.
Polycom's latest development, Polycom HD Voice, incorporates leading technologies that Polycom has developed through more than 15 years in voice communications, including wideband audio, enhanced signal processing, Acoustic Clarity Technology 2 (including next generation technologies for transparent full duplex, echo cancellation, dynamic noise reduction, automatic gain control and microphone management) and specialized system design to deliver unrivaled clarity and richness. This enables better clarity and improved intelligibility of information, which significantly improves comprehension and productivity and reduces listener fatigue. Polycom is working with Digium to make HD Voice available to Asterisk Business Edition customers.
Source: Polycom and Digium