Digium to Release Its Own Brand of Asterisk-Friendly VoIP Phones

Digium, Inc., has announced a trio of IP phones designed to interface directly with the company’s highly successful Asterisk open-source PBX and its graphical Switchvox PBX front-end.

Digium D70 IP Phone

Digium D70 IP Phone

The phones, each capable of high-quality “HD voice” using the G.722 wideband speech codec, will provide virtual plug-and-play connectivity to Asterisk and Switchvox installations, automating typically tricky device provisioning.

The models include a $130 2-line entry level phone (D40), a mid-level $180 phone (D50) with 10 separate speed dial keys, and a full-featured $280 6-line handset with 10-speed call keys and a navigable 4.5-inch LCD display that displays extensive caller and call status information. All three support Power over Ethernet (PoE) and include full duplex phone capabilities.

A dedicated “Apps” key on each phone opens the door to external JavaScript applications that could significantly extend the phones’ capabilities. Digium claims there are now more than 8,000 Asterisk developers around the world, and hopes many of them will focus their attention on writing useful applets.

Digium has been selling high end telephony gear for nearly a decade, but this is the first time the company has tested the IP phone market dominated by well-established manufactures such as Cisco, Polycom, Snom and others.

Enterprise and SMB IP telephony service providers are eagerly anticipating the new phones, expected to be available in April.

“This is terrific news,” said Ravi Sakaria, CEO of VoicePulse, a New Jersey based VoIP provider powering a number of large scale business Asterisk installations. “On-site device provisioning is often a burden on those managing a business phone system. The market is ready for a hardware product that simplifies the process of configuring phones on Asterisk.”

VoicePulse’s network already supports wideband HD audio and Sakaria welcomes the introduction of more HD phones. “HD voice is a great VoIP differentiator,” he said. “It’s one of those things you can’t live without once you hear it.”

Digium-produced descriptions and product specifications on each of the three phones can be downloaded here. The company has also released the following marketing video featuring Digium founder and principal Asterisk author Mark Spencer and Digium CEO Danny Windham introducing the new products.