If you want to check out some other video footage from IT Expo, go here.
Ok, so now my observations. First and foremost, SIP trunking and hosted VoIP were two of the hottest topics at the show. In addition to exhibitors promoting SIP trunking and hosted VoIP solutions, I attended and moderated a few conference sessions and my observation was that the ones discussing SIP trunking and/or hosted VoIP were some of the best attended conference sessions.
When I moderated the IP Contact Center Shootout session, I asked the panelists if they thought SIP trunking was here today or if call centers were still waiting to deploy SIP trunking due to VoIP QoS concerns. After all, in the call center, five 9s of phone reliability is even more critical. The response? Aspect Software's Thomas Chamberlain, Interactive Intelligence's Brad Herrington, and Nortel's Mark Morell all unequivocally stated that SIP trunking was here TODAY. In fact, all three agreed that NEW call centers aren't even deploying TDM (T1/E1/PRI/analog) and are in fact going 100% SIP-based VoIP. This is a HUGE revelation! I knew SIP trunking was increasingly being deployed, but to have major industry players state that TDM isn't even being deployed anymore within the call center arena is just amazing.
This viewpoint of SIP trunking taking off in the call center was also confirmed for the enterprise as well. I spoke with Chris Jones, CEO of Intuitive Voice Technology, a provider of an Asterisk-based IP-PBX. I asked him if he though SIP trunking arrived last year or if 2007 is truly the year of SIP trunking. Chris stated that his sales of his Asterisk-based solution (Evolution PBX) that included TDM hardware used to be the majority but that SIP trunking was making major inroads.
In fact, he said today 30% of his Evolution PBX sales include T1/E1/PRI hardware, 30% include analog hardware, and 30% is strictly SIP trunking with NO TDM HARDWARE. That only adds up to 90%, so I'm not sure where the other 10% went. Anyway, point being, he was saying that SIP trunking in the enterprise was already equal to those using T1/E1/PRI cards or analog cards for new deployments.
Chris also addressed the QoS issue of SIP trunking by pointing out that many SIP service providers have peering agreements with the backbone carriers / ISPs with minimal hops to ensure good voice quality. Well folks, looks like SIP trunking has arrived !
I have some other observations from the show that I hope to share soon. For now, SIP Invite has some other thoughts on IT Expo worth checking out.
Lastly, check out these photos from the very successful IT Expo show. Hover your mouse for a description: