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PABX & VOIPVOIPPHONEAsterisk

The Asterisk Voice over IP system is the most advanced PABX system available today. It brings you all the latest features of telephony and is infinitely scalable.  

Here are some of the highlights of Asterisk: 

  • Voicemail for everyone at no extra cost 
  • Interactive Voice Response (IVR) allows you to set up an intelligent phone system that directs calls quickly to the correct department (IVR recordings are done by Sounds Right recording studios by professional voice over artists) http://www.soundsright.co.za 
  • Asterisk has unlimited extensions. No more buying an expensive card for your propriety setup every time you get new employees 
  • Based on open-source technology and so it's infinitely expandable 
  • AGI (Asterisk Gateway Interface) allows custom scripts to interface with the telephony system 
  • Extremely stable because it runs on the Linux kernel 
  • Wide range of hardware and software available 
  • Caller queues and caller groups allows you to more intelligently distribute resources in you company 
  • Mature technology based on open standards 

Should you use Maintain IT to implement your Asterisk system we will help you with the following: 

  • Customisation of the system to suite your needs (IVR, queues / caller groups, VoiceMail, Call recording) 
  • Installation network cabling and telephones 
  • Least cost routing setup 
  • Installation of console applications, so that everyone in the business can see what's happening on the PABX
  • Setting up a home extensions via a data network, so that calls can easily be transferred from the PABX to the home extension - free of charge! 
  • Basic training on running the phone system - it's so easy and web-based that you'll enjoy doing this 
  • Assistance in get quality of service (QoS) right - if you're going to be running data and VoIP side by side you will have to optimise your network 
  • Setting up of caller data records (CDR) so that you can keep track of who is phoning where 
  • Assistance with caller ID display on actual phones, so that you can see the name of the customer instead of their telephone number. The contacts are updatede via a central database so repetition is avoided 
  • Setting up of remote access so that the PABX can be remotely managed if need be .
  • Setting up of trunking so that you can use your existing data network to cheaply call other destinations 
  • Firewall configuration to allow phones in and out and for special configurations

Here is a quick comparison of proprietary technology vs. Asterisk:  

Asterisk  

Proprietary  

Unlimited Extensions 

Your switchboard, e.g. 3x8, only allows 3 incoming lines and 8 outgoing lines. If you want 9 lines you have to buy an expensive proprietary card in order to add a new more lines. 

Voice mail included 

Need to buy expensive proprietary card in order to get voice mail 

IVR included 

Need to buy expensive proprietary card in order to get IVR 

Open interface to all telephony functions 

Most traditional switchboards don't have APIs (Application Program Interface) that allow you to communicate with the system 

Easy to set up and administer, web-based administration possible 

Difficult to set up and administer. You will have to pay some socially challenged switchboard engineer a lot of money to do anything out of the ordinary 

Music on Hold can be MP3 

Music on hold sounds like jingle bells or there is only a line out jack, so the music on hold runs on a separate system from your switchboard 

Open standard, compatible 

Proprietary systems are designed incompatible with other systems because this way the telephone company keeps you "locked in" 

Low cost - based on standard PC hardware and uses the Linux operating system 

Expensive - proprietary - everything is extra 

How much does Maintain IT charge for a typical Voice over IP implementation? 

Description  

Cost  

Installation of Hardware (PABX server, supporting 4 lines) 

R 8 000.00 

Setup of PABX (up to 10 extensions) 

R 1 000.00 

VOIP buisness Phone X 4 

R 4 000.00 

 

 

Total (incl. Vat):  

R13 000.00

Monthly Rental  (covers all upgrades, extra configuration and repairs to server)(configuration changes can be made remotely)

R 599.00 

One of the most frequently asked questions is how is voice over IP going to save you costs. In this section we to try address some of these questions. 

1. Will I still be using Telkom if I'm using Voice over IP? 

In a typical voice over IP implementation you will still be paying normal Telkom rates for making calls to Telkom's network. The reason for this is in order to make and receive call to any Telkom line you are still required to interface with Telkom's network at call termination. This situation should change in the future when interconnection costs come down and you are able to choose a different provider. At present you can choose a different provider but Telkom has set the interconnection cost so high that it makes it impractical (more expensive) to use any other provider. 

2. So how will voice over IP then actually save me costs? 

  1. The Maintain IT PABX is is much cheaper and infinitely more expandable than any other propriety PABX on the market today. The reason for this is it runs on standard PC hardware and everything in the box is non-propriety and contributed to by the open source community. There is no propriety lock-in. 
  2. If you make International calls you have the flexibility to choose your provider, and you can completely bypass Telkom's and use your data network to make these calls. You will require a voice over IP (trunk) provider to do this. Maintain IT offers SIP trunks and calling at very reasonable rates with month to month pre-paid accounts. Click here to find out more.
  3. Setting up a trunk with Maintain IT PABX is real easy! If you know anyone else that uses Asterisk then you can set up a trunk and calls between your PABX and their PABX is completely free of charge! This is a great solution for companies that have multiple branches, or companies that make calls to specific suppliers and / or partners a lot. 

5. How much does PABX cabling cost? 

PABX cabling is just like traditional UTP CAT 5 (computer networking) cable. So give us a call to give you a quote on laying a network cable and that's the whole cost?

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