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Asterisk + Skype + SMB = Freetalk Connect

Freetalk Connect

Jazinga and Freetalk have combined efforts and the result is a Skype enabled SMB phone system called Freetalk Connect.

The press release:

FREETALK Partners With Jazinga To Create FREETALK® Connect
Companies Collaborate On Skype-enabled Small Business Communication System
Featuring Set Up In Less Than 15 Minutes

MIAMI, January 20, 2010 — As the result of a new partnership announced today at ITEXPO East 2010, FREETALK and Jazinga have created the FREETALK® Connect, a full-featured unified communications system that is the first to feature Skype for SIP and Skype for Asterisk functionality.

FREETALK and Jazinga collaborated in designing the FREETALK Connect, featuring a do-it-yourself (DIY) technology approach that can be configured in less than 15 minutes, enabling users who are not tech savvy to use it without formal training. This new class of DIY communications system allows anyone with basic knowledge of computers to install and maintain the office phone system.  SIP, Skype and traditional PSTN phones can be plugged into the network, and the FREETALK Connect auto-detects and configures them. An onscreen wizard guides the user through setup. Adding users and administering the system after install is equally simple.

Further distinguishing the FREETALK Connect is its intelligent routing capabilities. Incoming Skype calls, as well as SIP, PSTN and IAX2 calls, can be routed to any local or remote Skype user, SIP, analog or mobile phone. Additionally, the FREETALK Connect enables users to set up “Find Me, Follow Me” features, and provides a unified mail box that consolidates messages from voice mail and email into one mailbox.

Some of the key features from the Jazinga platform found in the FREETALK Connect include:

Callback / Dial-around
Access to Skype Buddy lists
Auto Attendant / IVR
Paging
Call Parking
Remote Extensions
Music on Hold
Conferencing

The FREETALK Connect also has an easily configured and updated:

Managing routes to users, telephone services, and applications
Providing SIP/Skype telephone service management
Router management (networking, port forwarding, DNS, DHCP)

“Jazinga’s products consistently ensure call integrity by integrating quality of service and prioritizing voice traffic on the network into an affordable, simple product,” said In Store Solutions COO Craig Smith. “There was no question that FREETALK wanted to partner with Jazinga to develop the FREETALK Connect, because it continues our goal of working with the best providers to distribute outstanding products around the world.”
“FREETALK Connect is designed for small businesses with between 2 and 49 users, an undersold market that desperately needs UC functionality,” said Randy Busch, CEO of Jazinga Inc. “As a result of our partnership with In Store Solutions, the telecom technology playing field is much more level between larger enterprises and their smaller competitors.”

The the FREETALK Connect is marketed through Skype Shop, which is operated by In Store Solutions. The unit initially will be available to registered U.S. Skype users beginning in March.

For more information about FREETALK Connect PBX or to order a unit, visit

http://freetalkconnect.com.

About FREETALK

FREETALK is a product innovation catalyst – identifying market gaps and working with its global partners to design, manufacture and quickly bring to market products that disrupt traditional categories.  Leveraging untapped market opportunities, FREETALK products are designed to be environmentally friendly, sold online and delivered globally at aggressive price-points. Always at the forefront of innovation, FREETALK is known for creating synergistic products that add unique value to its partners’ branded points-of-sale.

About Jazinga

Jazinga Inc. develops communications products for small businesses and homes. The Jazinga system provides enterprise telephony and data functionality for this market, but at a fraction of the cost and without the setup complexity of an enterprise-class IP PBX. Jazinga Inc. is privately held and headquartered in Toronto, Canada. Additional information is available at http://www.jazinga.com.

Contact:
Sue Huss, for In Store Solutions
sue.huss@comunicano.com
+1 619-379-4396

Jazinga came to market a while back with a Asterisk appliance that is not much different than other you would find in the Asterisk market today. Skype recently announced their Skype SIP Trunking capability which is helping Skype become more open standards compliant, paving the way for deals like this one.

Since I have not tested the system myself I can only speculate that it is not huge departure from other Asterisk systems, which are not trivial to set up. Let’s hope they did their homework and come to market (March) with something that is much less technical and more end-user friendly, like Response Point.. was.

One thing that I find interesting is that it will be sold via the Skype store to US registered Skype users. If you were wondering what the connection is between Freetalk and Skype; the creators of Freetalk are also the curators of the Skype store. Ya, you heard me right. The company that created Freetalk (In Store Solutions) operates the Skype store. Which makes one wonder if there is overlapping ownership between Skype and In Store Solutions.

Something else that I find interesting, and not just because I am one of the founders of  Xten/Counterpath, is how this announcement relates the recent announcement of the Asterisk/Digium softphone from Counterpath. Which may be why In Store Solutions decided not to leverage the Digium or Asterisk brand in this release, maybe they see the new Asterisk Bria softphone as a competitor in this instance?

I expect this will not be the last Asterisk-based phone system to incorporate Skype functionality this year, but it would seem as though they are the first, congrats to fellow Canadians at Jazinga.

Skype for SIP, it's about time!

+

Back in 2004 I wrote a post relating to the VON Canada Panel I sat on with Niklas Zennstrom. It was an interesting debate on open standards (SIP in this case) and closed networks, specifically Skype. I was quite vocal about how silly I thought Skype was not to include SIP, a few of you picked up on that 😉

It looks like something good came of the eBay purchase as we now see a Skype pushing towards open standards, good stuff!

On a similar note, I heard a rumour that it’s likely Jason Fischl the current CTO at Counterpath (Xten) will be going over to work with Jonathan Christensen (General Manager – Media Platform) at Skype. Jason was an early advocate of SIP in the IETF and works with some of the best minds on the subject: Cullen Jennings, Robert Sparks, Alan Duric come to mind.

This could get interesting.

I will do some testing with SkypeforSIP & Response Point and post the results along with my comments on what this new offer from Skype might mean for Response Point.

Cisco Veteran Appointed President of Xten, Erik Steps Down

Here dawns the day of a new era for Xten. I have stepped down as president of Xten to make way for the next phase of growth in the company. I think Larry will do a marvelous job and certainly is a capable sales oriented executive, exactly what Xten needs. I welcome Mr. Timlick with open arms and I will continue to assist in any way I can as a consulting co-founder of the company.

Yahoo! News..
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Xten Networks, Inc. (OTCBB: XNWK – News), a provider of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol), Video over IP, Instant Messaging (IM), and Presence SIP softphones, today announced that Mr. Larry Timlick has been appointed as President and a Director of the company, effective June 17, 2005.

“Larry brings experienced leadership and management expertise to Xten. His vision combined with over two decades of sales and management experience will be a great asset to our team, our shareholders and our customers,” said Mark Bruk, co founder and Chairman of Xten. “Larry brings a keen understanding of the global communications industry, as well as the right combination of strategic insight and operational discipline to Xten.”

Read More…

PT.com licenses Xten's eyeBeam SDK to Develop a VoIP Softphone for the PT.com Broadband Service

Yahoo! News

PT.com, the Internet subsidiary of the wireline division of Portugal Telecom Group (NYSE: PT – News; visit http://www.telecom.pt), and Xten Networks, Inc. (OTCBB: XNWK – News), a provider of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol), Video over IP, Instant Messaging (IM), and Presence SIP softphones, today announced today that PT.com has entered into software licensing agreement with Xten. Under the terms of the agreement, PT.com has licensed Xten’s eyeBeam SDK to develop a softphone application for integration and deployment with the PT.com Broadband Service (SAPO ADSL).
“In the last months, we have been working rather intensively in finding VoIP solutions that will answer the present and future needs of our clients. We believe that this solution with Xten’s trademark is the best way to proceed and succeed in the future,” stated Manuel Rosa da Silva, an Executive Board Member of PT.

“This partnership signifies another carrier win for Xten,” stated Erik Lagerway, president and chief operating officer of Xten Networks. “We are very happy to have been chosen by PT to power their new IP communications soft client and eagerly await their upcoming product launch.”

Read More…

Ecuity Selects Xten as Its Preferred VoIP Softphone Client for Its V-Tone Smart Call Service

V-Tone Smart Call Integrates with Traditional Telephone Networks, Making it Easy to Leverage the Advantages of VoIP

Ecuity, Inc., (OTCBB:ECUI – News), a Voice-over-Internet Protocol (VoIP) communications company delivering solutions for the small-to-medium-sized business and residential markets, today announced it has selected Xten Networks, Inc. (OTCBB:XNWK – News), as Ecuity’s preferred softphone client for V-Tone Smart Call, Ecuity’s global Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) service. Xten Networks is a software provider of VoIP, Video over IP, Instant Messaging (IM), and Presence SIP softphones for laptops, desktops and Pocket PC hand held PDA’s.
V-Tone Smart Call is a service from Ecuity which integrates traditional telephone networks with VoIP, enabling customers to turn their PC or Pocket PC into an enhanced telephone system. The combination of Ecuity’s VoIP service and Xten’s softphones allows people to place and receive phone calls conveniently over any private Wi-Fi network, public HotSpot or broadband network.

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Xten Welcomes Global IP Telecommunications as its First Preferred Development Partner for the X-PRO Product Line

Xten Networks, Inc. (OTCBB: XNWK), a provider of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol), Video over IP, Instant Messaging (IM), and Presence SIP softphones, has announced Global IP Telecommunications, Inc. (Giptel) as its first Preferred Development Partner (PDP) for the X-PRO product line.

“Giptel has a long history as an Xten partner and now is our first preferred development partner,” commented Erik Lagerway, COO and President for Xten. “As an Xten PDP, Giptel can use the X-PRO software development kit (SDK) to co-brand or private label X-PRO based solutions for their customers.”

“Xten produces the best IP softphones in the market,” said Giptel CEO Salvatore Luzzi. “We are pleased to have aligned ourselves with Xten and the quality of products that they represent. X-PRO is a great product. We are simply picking up with the X-PRO series where Xten left off.”

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Xten Adds Linux As Supported OS

Xten Networks, Inc. (OTCBB: XNWK), a provider of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol), Video over IP, Instant Messaging (IM), and Presence SIP softphones, announced today that some of its SIP softphones and software development kits (SDKs) are now available for Linux.

“Xten has done and continues to do very well on the desktop. The company is now becoming more active in developing and selling solutions into the appliance oriented market,” commented Erik Lagerway, COO and President for Xten. “The first step towards creating some of these embedded solutions is support for Linux.”

Xten’s softphones for Windows, MAC OS X, Pocket PC and now Linux are software applications, which run on devices such as personal computers (PCs) or personal digital assistants (PDAs) or can be integrated into set-top boxes, embedded devices, instant messenger applications, and the like. When an Xten softphone is connected to a service provider’s network, the user can make and receive calls to and from other “on-net” callers (IP-to-IP) and/or “off-net” callers (IP-to-PSTN/Cellular) with the same quality of service they would expect from an IP handset. However, at a fraction of the cost, while providing more features and functionality than an IP handset.

The Linux version of X-Lite has been tested on Debian®, RedHat Fedora, S.U.S.E.® and Sun® JDS. A free version of X-Lite for Linux is now available from Xten’s website, please visit www.xten.com.

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