We like the FreePBX product and it is excellent the way Bandwidth.com have sponsored the future development, we see that they have now announced a Developer Sandbox Program in order to accelerate development of next-generation applications for IP communications. The intended initial focus of the program will be to enable a select group of telephony focused developers to join Bandwidth.com’s internal pilot projects that are focused on:
- IP communications network functionality, such as next-generation VoIP codecs, T38 fax protocol, SIP enabled SMS, and HD voice
- Fixed-mobile convergence functionality, such as sharing one number across both mobile and landlines and unique new telephony applications
- Open source telephony, focused on FreePBX
Bandwidth.com’s approach is to catalyze the next generation of telephony applications by the powerful combination of open source telephony software (FreePBX), open access to Bandwidth.com’s own VoIP network sandbox, and unique industry partnerships, that allow developers to employ some of the newest telephony innovations.
We also see that at the same time they are announcing a developer release of FreePBX v3 as well as a Beta release of FreePBX v2.6, so it obvious the product is moving forward and their developers have been busy.
For more information go to FreePBX.
In the past we mentioned that Fonality caused a few waves in the Opensource Community by developing their own version of FreePBX to work more closely with their Trixbox product, it seems that FreePBX has now entered the hands of bandwidth.com by hiring the project’s main developer as its Open Source Community Developer and is said to be committing significant resources and effort to expand the scope of the project.
An informal announcement of bandwidth.com’s commitment to FreePBX came through the main developer Philippe Lindheimer’s blog at www.freepbx.org on 14th November in a post called “A Bright Future for FreePBX.” Lindheimer said he had “joined forces” with bandwidth.com as its Open Source Community Director and indicated both he and bandwidth.com would work to expand the scope of FreePBX and to assure it remains “open and strong.”
Lindheimer cited bandwidth.com’s efforts in purchasing the FreePBX trademark and its efforts with FreeSwitch as areas where the company has been helpful to the open source community. Since bandwidth.com sells VoIP and data services not software then there appears to be no conflict of interest.
This is the latest coup for FreePBX; the web based GUI provides preprogrammed functionality and ease of use on top of Asterisk, including features such as follow me, ring groups with calls confirmation, music on hold, conferencing, and paging and intercom functionality for many SIP phones. Digium incorporated FreePBX into its compilation of the AsteriskNow 1.5 turnkey release in October.
See the blog entry here.
We like to try and keep an eye on what happens in the Asterisk community and we have always liked the Trixbox CE product, well it seems there is a real spat going on with Trixbox.
Trixbox began life as Asterisk@Home, and was later rebranded as Trixbox. Asterisk in it’s early life did not have a configuration GUI and configuration was always time consuming so this lead to the design of configuration tools, one such tool was called AMP (Asterisk Management Portal), and that became known as FreePBX. Trixbox was distributed with FreePBX as the GUI tool.
Well it seems Trixbox is now distancing themselves from FreePBX, and has moved to create their own forked configuration tool, which is more tightly integrated with Trixbox. Trixbox also mentioned security concerns, faster bug fixes and improved features as additional reasons for this change. Trixbox has released CE v2.6.2, which includes the GPL patch for their integrated version of FreePBX, and this is currently a BETA release.
The formal announcement on the Trixbox Forum here has lead to some very lively debate.
It is our guess Trixbox users will be happy but that fans of FreePBX will not – it seems the Asterisk community would prefer to see FreePBX survive in its own right espescially as it helped Fonality get a foothold in the PBX market along the way. You will see from the comments on the forum that feelings certainly run high when this sort of things happens