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SIPxchange

The plan going forward is to instead sell Nortel's Software Communication System 500 to businesses wanting to buy a voice system based on Pingtel's open source code. So with Nortel's acquisition of Pingtel there will be one less PBX in an overcrowded market. It's the sort of much-needed attrition that Zeus Kerravala talks about.

SIPxchange systems presently deployed will be supported for the next few years, but the product will no longer be actively developed. And there will be a migration path from SIPxchange ECS to SCS 500. Of course, the option is still open to download sipXecs, Pingtel's open source PBX software that is available from the SIPfoundry open source community. Using this, businesses, educational institutions, and other organizations can continue to build their own PBXs or buy from one of the several businesses selling turnkey systems based on sipXecs.

Despite their both being based on the same Pingtel software, there are a number of differences between Nortel's SCS 500 and Pingtel's SIPxchange ECS. The most obvious is that the Nortel system scales only to 500 lines, while the Pingtel appliance has been marketed as supporting thousands. Nortel assures me that the SCS 500 scalability limit has more to do with the server hardware the SCS 500 software is presently loaded on. The company needed an application-rich communications platform for midmarket customers seeking a more compact, cost-effective solution than its other platforms could provide. However, there seems to be no inherent scalability limitation in the software, so - in addition to the SIPxchange-to-SCS migration path - we're likely to see a more scalable SCS 500 before too long.