Forward Thinking

Comms Business Magazine talks to Bart Delgado, Managing Director of Akixi, about hosted telephony, WebRTC, web services and the future of communications

Channel veteran Bart Delgado speaks from first hand experience when it comes to examining the sales that resellers make and he’s been taking a look at the deals made in the hosted telephony market.

“Resellers move through an evolutionary cycle; as they build up their skills and experience, gain credentials and case studies the size of their customers tends to increase. We’ve noticed this again most recently when examining the size of our Akixi deployments with Gamma hosted telephony resellers.

Web RTCGamma has become very successful at selling their Horizon hosted telephony solution and are now the leading Broadsoft Hosted partner in the UK with over 250 Channel Partners.

In the CPE PBX world the average number of extensions sold per system is 40 whereas the average number of Horizon extensions sold per system is 12.

What we can do is say that a lot of small systems that were once mini PBXs are going the way of hosted telephony and that this is a trend we are seeing right across the entire hosted VoIP sector.

We know from our deployments of Akixi, where we already have 145 sites installed on Gamma Horizon solutions that the average number of users is far higher at 22 seats per user. So given that larger systems are sold by more experienced resellers we can take a view on why and how hosted telephony plus our Akixi call management solutions are being sold.

Worldwide we now have 763 installations and have an even higher average of 36 seats per customer. Bear in mind of course that Akixi may be deployed in just one part of a business, for example, the call centre.

Akixi do not sell hosted telephony but can be a key part of the solution and as part of our channel support services we need to make sure Akixi has a full and current understanding of our reseller skill sets – and these range in competence from high to low. However our task is to always ensure that our applications are simple and easy to understand and use by the customer.

Our vision is to make our products look like a swan – graceful and elegant above the waterline while below water the product is working hard and efficiently to deliver the results.”

As a firm that delivers a web based software as a service application Akixi is keeping a close eye on the development and progress of WebRTC or web based real time communications.

“CTI joined the two distinct worlds of computing and telephony together through integration. WebRTC removes the need for that integration component as products are designed to interoperate from their inception.

With CTI we have seen the evolution of a voicemail system from a monolithic monster sized box to an application that is a built integral part of a standard PBX. With WebRTC we will soon see VoIP capability and more built in to the browser.

Interoperability will be key but WebRTC signals a generic and even greater interoperability for communications than SIP. At that point we will be looking seriously at wholesale and widespread use of web services – a way in which products, services and applications delivered via the web communicate with each other with seamless interoperability.

This will make it easy for peripheral applications providers to work with more platforms – voice will become interoperable – WebRTC will give browsers a voice with telephony and presence in your browser.”

So why is Akixi seeing huge growth on the Broadsoft platform?

“Akixi is easy to deploy and use, is scalable to tens of thousands of users and comes with a 30-day commitment model. It offers a roadmap to web services and has been built with that in mind.

Why only Broadsoft? Broadsoft has an eco-system of third party developers whereas other hosted platform vendors are yet to see the benefits of working with ISVs. We would love to work with Genband, NCONNECT and other VoIP platform vendors but they would need to embrace third party software vendors first.”

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David Dungay

Editor - Comms Business Magazine