Thursday, November 8, 2007

BAD Asterisk FUD

I had the benefit of getting some market feedback today re: Shoretel spreading FUD (Fear Uncertainty and Doubt) about some competitors but also Asterisk. In spite of their recent successes, it shows how ignorant some of their sales folks can be and obviously do not research Digium or Asterisk. We all do what we can to delay competitive threats in an account, but some do it with class some do it with FUD. Here is where they are so far off, it shows they are not concerned about open source Asterisk. Now we know they are targeting the big boys and that's good they are taking their eyes off the ball!

Shoretel: Asterisk Appliance.......

........."thousands of other small partners with little investment are trying to undercut you"

Response: Good for end users; low cost and as resellers package complete systems and services they will win the deal and make good margins and the customer will spend far less for the solution! Competition is good for buyers!

Shoretel: Asterisk Upgrades

.........."How does a customer who is sold an asterisk system upgrade if they want to grow?"

Response: Asterisk is SIP but also supports TDM-SIP and IAX (Inter Asterisk Exchange) allowing the customer to keep their phones and can easily connect to other SIP locations. How many Pizza places, Dentists, bagel shops, bakeries, real estate agencies etc need less than 50 phones? Simple upgrades - it's free for open source and the recent Switchvox Free Edition which can easily be upgraded with a SINGLE CLICK!

Shoretel: What happens if IBM, HP or Dell decide to sell asterisk (good for their servers and support business)What happens to your partners when IBM competes for the deals? Who knows, maybe we will see sooner rather than later?

Response: Shoretel might be afraid of competition, but the end user welcomes it as part of a healthy marketplace.

Shoretel: How baked is the solution? Open Source is still evolving How many features do you get?

Response: Asterisk comes from Digium, the world leader and inventor of Asterisk, and the benevolent owner of the Asterisk project (open source software are called projects). There are thousands of daily downloads of Asterisk software. Thousands of community members write, test and fix features daily. Imagine Shoretel identifying all the bugs found globally? Right. But open source users have eyes into every bug and every fix. However, the features are rich and continue to get richer. Asterisk is also the most interoperable IP PBX on the planet since it's the most ubiquitious.

Don't believe it? try it:
IP PBX: or (no technical knowledge needed)
Asterisk IP Telephony Platform: (little technical knowledge) or (highly technical knowledge required)

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