VoIP Developer Keynote: Digium's Mark Spencer

Greg Galitzine : Greg Galitzine's VoIP Authority Blog
Greg Galitzine

VoIP Developer Keynote: Digium's Mark Spencer

According to Mark Spencer, President of Digium, “Digium is the smallest telecom company in the world that matters.”


As anyone knows, Mark Spencer is not only the president of Digium, he also created Asterisk. For those that may not know, Asterisk is an open source PBX. In Spencer’s words, Asterisk is an “open source, hybrid TDM and packet voice PBX and IVR platform with ACD functionality.”


The platform is:

  • Fully open source
  • Supports TDM
  • Supports VoIP (SIP, H.323, SCCP, etc…)
  • Supports PBX features
  • Supports IVR
  • Supports ACD call queuing; and
  • Supports basic call features as well as advanced call features.


In explaining why people might consider open source in general -- and Asterislk specifically --  for telecom Spencer explained that there are a number of reasons to do so:


“Lower cost; large market of highly technical people who can contribute to the project; high demand for customization of phone systems; biz models that facilitate the adoption of open source solutions,” he said.


Open source also allows resellers and integrators the ability to add value to existing phone systems. This enables better branding opportunities, more margin for reseller, etc.


Spencer went on to describe a whole series of different development strategies for developers who wish to use the Asterisk platform to deliver interesting new communications applications.


According to Spencer, Asterisk development is driven by contributed development, in-house development, and development done in reponse to apaying third party. “In any case,” he said “Asterisk development is driven by developers.”

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