Zultys Technologies has released a Linux-based softphone application that could help penguin-powered SMBs adopt IP telephony.
Tony Warhurst, country manager for Zultys Technologies in Australia, said adopting converged voice-and-data telecommunications could be problematic for firms favouring Linux, as most major-vendor softphone applications were Microsoft Windows-based.
Open standards specialist Zultys has globally released a Linux-based softphone, Zultys LIPZ4, that the vendor developed in its US labs. The application is available free for download from the web, Warhurst said.
'It makes sense to be able to put a Linux one on, instead of having to support a Windows-based system. We know for a fact you can't load Windows software on to a Linux machine,' he said.
Linux has been growing in popularity among businesses but limited application functionality had put some users off trying to run an entirely Windows-free shop.
Warhurst said LIPZ4 offered more bang for buck since users would only be charged for some functionality, such as encryption and five-to-one conferencing.
'We're talking the same functionality that we had put in the [Zultys IP business phone] ZIP 4x4. Like the encryption. And I haven't seen a Windows-based phone that had that,' he said.
The LIPZ4 also had five-to-one conference calling, which on a softphone was a 'pretty useful function' which meant it had better functionality than some downloadable third-party Windows softphones, Warhurst claimed.
'There's no catch,' he said. 'We offer call-forwarding, transferring and re-dial in our base system.'
He said the free add-on could help resellers win sales with businesses that wanted to update to VoIP without wasting funds on new hardware. Zultys' own resellers were talking to customers and getting them to download the LIPZ4 on trial.
'It makes sense to roll out an IP telephony system, once you offer more functionality ... if you've already got the infrastructure,' Warhurst said. 'In a lot of places, people are encouraged to buy new PCs to load Windows on them.'
Zultys claimed the LIPZ4 was compatible with any IP telephony system running Session Initiation Protocol (SIP). It supported four calls, instant messaging, hold, transfer, forward, redial and could store the last 32 incoming and outgoing phone numbers.
Users could buy a licence from Zultys which enabled conferencing, do-not-disturb, AES encryption, G.729 compression and back-up server specification, the company said.