Digium Defines Web-Aware Unified Communications with New Version of Switchvox IP PBX

Digium today introduced a new version of Switchvox SMB, an IP PBX designed for small to midsize businesses (SMBs).

Switchvox’s unique Web-aware capabilities allow its integration with Web and back-office applications, turning the phone system into a powerful unified communications (UC) platform. Switchvox SMB 4.0 adds numerous UC capabilities, including support for fax, chat, and video calling.

Switchvox SMB is designed for businesses that want a full-featured voice over IP phone system for hundreds of employees per server at a fraction of the cost of traditional PBXs. With Switchvox SMB, Digium offers the power and functionality of Asterisk—the most downloaded open source telephony software in the world—combined with advanced yet easy-to-use administrative features and, with version 4.0, close integration with several communications methods and the web.

“Switchvox has always leveraged web technologies more than other IP PBXs,” said Josh Stephens, general manager of Digium’s San Diego operations and a co-creator of Switchvox. “We’ve integrated Switchvox with Google maps and web-based CRM software such as Salesforce and SugarCRM. We’ve also provided easy-to-use APIs that enable businesses to quickly tie together their back-office software that they rely on day to day with their Switchvox IP PBX. Now, support for instant messaging, fax and video calling, plus additional IVR functionality and a range of new benefits for administrators and users alike make Switchvox SMB 4.0 a truly web-aware UC solution.”

“The release of Switchvox SMB 4.0 marks an important milestone for Digium and for the telephony industry,” said Danny Windham, CEO of Digium. “This is the first time that advanced unified communications features have been made available to SMBs that might not have big-company budgets, but are as reliant as anyone on their phones, e-mail, fax, chat and video and on the web to improve employee communications and efficiency. With Switchvox SMB 4.0, Digium brings all of these elements together and significantly integrates the business phone system with web applications in a way that we believe is unique today.”

Highlights of Switchvox SMB 4.0 include:

  • Fax integration—Users can send and receive faxes quickly and easily via Switchvox;
  • Video calling—Switchvox supports video phones that use the codec standards H.263 and H.264;
  • Instant messaging—Switchvox includes a private chat server that uses the widely adopted, open XMPP protocol. The Switchvox Switchboard offers a Chat Panel, or users can select their favorite XMPP-based client;
  • Centralized presence—Presence and status details for call and chat activity are visible across multiple peered Switchvox PBXs;
  • Web-aware interactive voice response (IVR) tools—Switchvox includes many new IVR functions for building custom applications. These sophisticated tools include exchanging sound files with web applications, setting system-wide variables and more;
  • Unified messaging enhancements—IMAP integration provides a standards-based solution for voicemail and faxes. Also, users can customize multiple greetings and e-mail notifications optimized for display on a wide range of devices; 
  • Organized phonebooks—Employees can organize their contacts into groups and keep multiple phone numbers for each contact. Also, a company directory panel uses type-to-find to help users find extensions quickly for any of their coworkers;
  • Call queue improvements—Small businesses and call centers alike will benefit from the ability to log into, log out of and pause a member’s status on each queue with a single click, and even add comments that are displayed to supervisors or other queue members;
  • Switchvox Notifier—A Windows desktop client provides interaction with MS Office applications. Pop-up notifications show incoming caller details and call history, and one-click options let users quickly add Outlook contacts and dial phone numbers;
  • Switchvox Extend—An XML-based API lets administrators create new extensions and access call logs, reports and extension lists;
  • Auto-provisioning snom IP phones—Switchvox offers automatic configuration of VoIP phones manufactured by snom technology and Polycom; and
  • More call options—Switchvox supports BRI—an important step toward expanded international sales, and HD Voice—high-quality wideband audio delivered via the G.722 protocol.

Switchvox SMB 4.0 is available free of charge to customers with a current Switchvox SMB software subscription. For new customers, pricing for Switchvox SMB remains unchanged and begins at $3,390 for a 10-user system, including hardware, software, a one-year subscription and warranty. The entire line of Switchvox SMB appliances, the largest of which scales to serve 400 users, will be available from Digium and partners world-wide beginning on March 3.

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