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An IP PBX in the clouds

Internet Solutions has launched the next phase of managed IP telephony services to the market. The launch of this new service means that IS can now offer clients a fully managed Hosted IP PBX (HIP) offering.

This offering is available to all enterprises with distributed networks, SMME and SOHO sites, where there are less than 50 users per physical site. IS has also introduced free on-net company calls country wide when clients sign up for the Hosted IP PBX service and use IS to terminate outbound calls.

For years businesses have been exposed to the term Converged Communications, often without a clear understanding of what this truly means as a business tool. ‚With telecommunications remaining one of the highest expense line items for businesses, it is not only becoming increasingly important for organisations to understand this term, but also to put the various elements into practice to allow for improved return on investment and total cost of ownership,‚ says Wayne Speechly, General Manager of Voice Solutions at Internet Solutions.

‚Our offering is in line with the increased movement within the South African marketplace to adopt converged communication services and simplifies the strategic and financial challenges our clients face around technology roadmaps, PABX refresh and the associated capital and maintenance expenditure.‚ The IS Hosted IP PBX is a fully managed, functional IP PBX situated in the cloud allowing for organisations to replace their onsite PBX with this managed solution, using a pricing model that works on a per extension per month basis.

Speechly says the service appeals to a green field’s site or an existing corporate office currently in need of a PBX refresh. ‚IS provides all components of the solution which may include: the cabling, the LAN switch and associated Quality of Service, IP phones for each user, the CPE allowing integration into the IS cloud where the Hosted IP PBX is located as well as termination of calls via the Voice over IS (VoIS) platform,‚ he says. There is also a reception console available. ‚This turnkey solution allows the target market site to enable full voice telecommunications from the handset to the termination party with full management, support and cost savings,‚ Speechly adds.

When an organisation has multiple geographically separated sites, even when sites may be across multiple provinces, all calls to extensions within the enterprise structure will be classified as free calls. ‚We believe this enhances our value proposition quite significantly in that customer environments with branches in JHB, Cape Town and Durban (for example) can now call one another within the same organisation across the VoIS infrastructure for free. Not only does the client get reduced telecommunication costs utilising IS to terminate outbound calls, but now any call to an employee on the network will result in no charge.‚

‚We believe this new solution will go a long way in simplifying our customers’ lives,‚ says Speechly. ‚Our customers need flexibility and scalability to allow for future growth, whilst still knowing that the system is reliable and supports effective business continuity best practice.‚ The converged platform approach also allows for a reduction in network expenses through the consolidation of services, reduced staffing, up-front and ongoing equipment costs as well as simplified vendor management.

‚This new solutions provides significant added value for our clients as it provides a truly converged and single network infrastructure,‚ says Speechly. ‚As part of the service roadmap, clients will also benefit from a truly remote offering allowing for users to maintain accessibility from anywhere, and part of the organisation,‚ he concludes.

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