Thursday, January 24, 2008

ITExpo - Day 1 - Dell and Fonality Team Up

Got time for a quick post before heading over to today's sessions. Had a full day yesterday at the show, and the turnout looks strong so far. I moderated two sessions - one on peering and one on hosted VoIP, and they went well. All the presentations were great, and if you're interested in any of their slide decks, let me know.

I also did a bunch of video interviews that are being co-produced by IP Convergence TV and TMC. Am doing these wearing my Portal Editor hat for IPCTV, and these interviews will be posted on both of their websites once they're ready to go - hopefully starting next week. Am doing a few more of these today, so we'll have a good backlog of thought leader perspectives to share in the next little bit.

Perhaps the most interesting news item from yesterday was the Dell/Fonality announcement. As you can probably surmise, Dell is incorporating open source PBX - via Fonality - into their PCs to support VoIP. As Russell Shaw notes, the Fonality VoIP Phone System is a PC-based, hosted SMB solution. Russell's post also has some great screenshots of the interface.

Totally makes sense, and it sure puts open source into the mainstream. Dell is a huge channel for Fonality (trixbox), and will give SMBs another reason to keep buying from Dell. Not sure how this will impact Fonality's existing channel relationships, but this looks like a great move all around.

Tom Keating has two in-depth posts about the news - here and here, and he also refers to Rich Tehrani's post, which includes a Q&A podcast with Fonality's Chris Lyman. Tom has some bang-on comments on the implication of this deal for Dell's relationships with Nortel and Microsoft, as well as the need for the Asterisk community to get behind SIP. This could be the biggest story of the show - let's see what unfolds from here on in.



Would you buy a car from this man? Nadji - Mr. T - and the Ford Mustang that some lucky person - not me - will win Friday afternoon.


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