The Next Generation of SIPStation Service

There once was a time where traditional telecom providers were the only available option for phone service, telling YOU what service you can have and at what price. That was until providers, such as Sangoma, offered a significantly better alternative through SIP Trunking, allowing you to connect to a provider using your standard Internet connection and receive flexible and rich services at up to 60% less vs the cost of traditional services.

For years now, Sangoma Technologies has been providing high quality Voice Over IP (VoIP) phone service, with no-contract, for North America using its own SIP trunking service, called SIPStation. Designed for the highly popular FreePBX and PBXact phones systems, SIPStation offers an unrivaled approach for activation and provisioning, getting your service up and running within minutes. The ingenuity is all built into the SIPStation Store, which allows you to purchase and automatically configure your service all in one go. In fact, this is built into Admin GUI of the PBX, where you can even sign up for a 21-day “no-strings attached” trial.

Today, we are excited to announce the next generation of the SIPStation service, which offers more flexible service options, meaning more cost savings for our customers! This is all made possible with the introduction of Trunk Groups. This allows customers to share their voice services across multiple office locations. Prior to this update, customers requiring service for their branch sites needed dedicated voice lines (or SIP trunks) for each site, which means dedicated monthly costs for sites that many not even have high call volume. Now, with the new Trunk Group feature, customers can choose to share their voice lines across all their sites, offering significant cost savings. The new feature also allows customers to share their phone numbers (or DIDs) across different phone lines too!

Leveraging the power of Trunk Groups, the new SIPStation also offers enhanced failover options, keeping your service UP and running when things go wrong. With Trunk Groups, if one of your locations PBX goes down you can have your inbound calls, on a per phone number (DID) basis, automatically failover to different PBX(s) in your trunk group and still receive your inbound calls.

To see some of the key advantages SIPStation has to offer for your FreePBX and PBXact phone system, please visit: https://wiki.freepbx.org/display/ST/SIPStation+Key+Features+with+FreePBX+and+PBXact

Stay tuned for more great upcoming features!

FreePBX 14 Release Candidate

It’s been over two years since the team at Sangoma set out to give FreePBX a facelift, and over a year since we completed that goal when FreePBX 13 went stable.

In the last 12 months, we’ve implemented hundreds of new features for FreePBX 13 while continuing to grow our Unified Communications product lines through Zulu. We released 6 formerly commercial modules as open source, emphasizing our support of open source. We’ve also added over 41,000 lines of new code while welcoming an additional 18 new contributors.

We also introduced Edge Mode for bleeding-edge module upgrades, support for Asterisk 14, improved reload times, self signing of modules and a new improved certificate manager that supports Let’s Encrypt. While adding all those new features, we’ve also fixed (at time of writing) 1185 reported issues.

For a full list of everything that was accomplished during our 13-release checkout our roadmap.

Making FreePBX Modern

One of the biggest problems we’ve run into over the past few years working on FreePBX 13 was the fact that we were basing FreePBX 13 around the PHP 5.3 platform. PHP 5.3 was released June 30th, 2009. With the release of FreePBX 14 we now require PHP 5.6 which was released August 28th, 2014. That’s over 5 years of improvements, which has resulted – among other things – in considerable performance improvements with 14 compared to version 13.

Due to this massive internal change, FreePBX 14 is now recommended to be installed on the Sangoma 7 distro.

Of course, manual and custom installations of all versions of FreePBX are still available, but the legacy Schmooze Distro (Cent 6.6) will not be able to upgrade to FreePBX 14 instantly, as it requires an Operating System Upgrade to Sangoma 7. More information about this will be coming in a few weeks.

Emphasizing Security

One of the first changes we made in FreePBX 14 was to let systems automatically update modules that have security vulnerabilities. This will ensure that when we release updates to modules that have security issues, your systems will be updated to prevent those security issues – in less than 24 hours! We’ve made this option opt-out, so you can disable it through Advanced Settings if you desire, but we recommend against it!

Upgrading with Ease

The days of running distro upgrade scripts or having to go deal with stuck upgrades are over. In FreePBX 14 all system upgrades are done right through the GUI, in the same place you’d normally go to update modules.

You can also schedule automatic module or system upgrades at specified dates and times.

Globalization & Localization Improvements

Sangoma Technologies is a global company with over 150 employees worldwide. We realized that United States of America date formats don’t work for many countries and locals. FreePBX now comes with the ability to define the time zone, language and date/time formatting system wide, per group and/or per user.

Each user can also individually define and change these settings from within UCP. FreePBX 14 now also supports a broader scope of UTF8 which means you can now save settings in FreePBX with emojis!


Introducing The Calendar Module

For a long time, we’ve heard different scenarios of complex time conditions logic to deal with holidays such as Easter (which falls on a different day every year).

To solve this in 14 we implemented a calendar module. This module allows you to add any web based iCal, CalDav, Google or Exchange Web Services calendar. You can also add local calendars through which you can add custom events. These calendars can then be linked to Time Conditions, Paging Pro groups, Find Me/Follow Me enabled/disable events and more!

To learn more about the new Calendar Module see: http://wiki.freepbx.org/display/FPG/Calendar+Module and http://wiki.freepbx.org/display/FPG/Calendar+Event+Groups+Module.

Remote calendars can be updated on a specific schedule you define. This allows you, the administrator, to delegate a calendar out to your users that they could update, adding events when the office is open which will then trigger Time Conditions at the appropriate times. We hope this new feature helps to ease configuration and management of your FreePBX systems.

A Redesigned UCP (User Control Panel)

Starting with the addition of the ARI back in the 2.x era, FreePBX has long had a need for a User Control Panel. A place where your end users can go to change specific settings related to their accounts or listen to voicemails or call recordings.

In FreePBX 12 we completely overhauled the UCP interface to give it important HTML5 updates. Including in-browser playback of recordings, notifications, a responsive interface, native chat and an in browser WebRTC phone. In FreePBX 14 we’ve gone one step further by giving your users complete control over how their Control Panel looks and feels.

With the additions of dashboards and widgets users can add, remove, resize and organize how they want their dashboard(s) in UCP to look and function. Users can have multiple dashboards that have different configurations of widgets. You could have one dashboard for your voicemail boxes and another dashboard that has widgets for your queues. For more information on the new UCP and what’s changed click here.

XMPP Improvements

Six months ago, we decided to open source our XMPP chat module but promised to continue improving the underlying source code.

Staying true to this promise we have completely reworked the internals of our XMPP module. Our new chat engine is more robust than ever and is fully supported by our flagship UC Zulu product line. Support for group chats, avatars, message history and more is already supplied in XMPP and best of all it’s free!

Zulu already supports these outstanding features and in the next few months the UCP chat interface will also support rooms, avatars and message history. We are very excited with how Zulu has progressed and how it’s also helped to expand the FreePBX Open Source Portfolio.

Moving Forward

In the next six months, we hope to release a Beta of FreePBX 15 with a redesigned backup module that will no longer be required to restore from the same version you are backing up to. This will also start our quicker release period where major FreePBX releases will happen every 6 months.

Get FreePBX 14 RC1 Today

Choose one of the following methods to install, provide feedback & report bugs:

Thank you for using FreePBX!

Attention Integrators and Resellers

Attention Integrators and Resellers:   

  • Are you offering FreePBX as a Hosted application/Cloud Offering to your customers?
  • Do you currently offer your customers SIP trunking services on a monthly subscription model?
  • Are you interested in exploring a possible exit strategy for your business?
  • Would you like to bring your customers into a larger entity with more resources?
  • Are you tired of being the person/company who does everything and competing with the big boys, yet never being able to take time off for fear of what will happen to your customers when you’re away?

If you answered yes to some or all of the questions above Sangoma would like to hear from you.  We are looking for possible acquisitions of SIP Trunking and Hosted PBX providers and have completed a few of them the past couple of years.  We are looking for companies all over the globe, with recurring revenue that use Sangoma/FreePBX in your platform.

Please contact us by sending us an email to buyme@sangoma.com and someone from our team will reach back out to you and to explore the possible fit for us together.  This is a confidential email address, and any correspondence as well as follow up discussions, will be handled privately and with discretion.

Tony Lewis
Sangoma Technologies
COO

1-Month Free Trial Now Available for Sangoma’s Cloud-based RMS

A 1-Month FREE Trial of Sangoma’s Remote Monitoring Service (RMS) is now available for you to try!

What is RMS you ask?


RMS is Sangoma’s NEW Cloud-based Remote Monitoring Service that provides PBX administrators with real-time statistics of their FreePBX and PBXact phone system infrastructure, reducing downtime occurrence, which saves you money. Features include:

Easy-to-read Threat Alerts

These alerts are summarized by severity, system name and triggers and allow users to expand panes for more granular details. Alerts can be quickly silenced from further email notifications and will self-close upon clearing of the condition.

RMS Graphs & PBX Analytics

Graphs are available for every FreePBX / PBXact system being monitored and display valuable information about active calls, CDR, extensions, SIP trunks, fraud stats and more.

Auto-generated Email Notifications

RMS will auto-generate email notifications upon triggered alerts and provide details to help you take action if necessary.


If you’re interested in giving RMS a try, log in to your FreePBX or PBXact Web GUI and click on RMS Management under the Admin tab. For step-by-step instructions, please visit: http://wiki.freepbx.org/display/RMS/RMS+Installation

You can also get your 1-Month FREE Trial from the Store inside your Portal Account.

Here we grow again! Sangoma Introduces the s400 to Its Family of IP Phones

Sangoma offers a full line of IP Phones ranging from entry level to enterprise, offering advanced features and tight integration with FreePBX and PBXact.

Today we’re excited to announce an addition to the family…the s400. The Sangoma s400 IP Phone sits in between our s300 & s500, and is perfect for the light user who still wants access to powerful phone applications.

These phone apps allow users to control complicated features directly from their Sangoma phone. There’s no need to remember feature codes. Applications include:

  • Call Parking
  • Follow Me
  • Do Not Disturb
  • Conference Rooms
  • Call Forwarding
  • Time Conditions
  • Presence
  • Queues
  • Queue Agents
  • Transfer to Voicemail
  • Visual Voicemail
  • Log In / Out
  • Call Flow
  • Contacts

Every phone in the s-series also features Zero Touch Provisioning via Sangoma’s Redirection Server. This means your phone will quickly locate your FreePBX or PBXact system, and easily get full configuration right out of the box. You won’t have to worry about installing anything or manually configuring hundreds of extensions.

The EndPoint Manager module is also enabled automatically inside your PBX system. This lets your users control global settings, program their phone keys, map extensions, upload images, download new firmware and much more.

On top of all that, the s400 features a built-in VPN client for increased security, 5-way conferencing and is EHS module / headset compatible.

Large quantities of the new s400 are expected to be available early March. For more information, talk to one of our Sangoma Sales Representatives or visit the Sangoma IP Phones Product Page.

Please also join us in our excitement on Tuesday, January 31st as we host 3 webinar sessions to launch the s400. Two sessions will be held in English and one in Spanish! Register now!