Unified Communications Nation

Aug 5 2009   8:03PM GMT

Room for one more? Barracuda Networks serves up IP PBX

Shamus McGillicuddy Shamus McGillicuddy Profile: Shamus McGillicuddy

As if there weren’t enough choices already for IP PBX vendors, Barracuda Networks has started up a subsidiary company called CudaTel. The new company’s website describes it as a collaboration between Barracuda and FreeSwitch. FreeSwitch is an open source telephony platform that can be “used as a simple switching engine, a PBX, a media gateway or a media server to host IVR applications using simple scripts or XML to control the callflow.”

A quick perusal of the CudaTel site tells me that these PBX boxes start at $1999 with no per-user license costs. I assume that is for the baseline model, which can support an unlimited number of extensions, but with a limit of 10 concurrent calls and up to two conference calls. The 1U box has 50 GB of voicemail capacity. I highest-end box, whose price I don’t see listed, can support up to 250 concurrent calls, 50 conference calls and 200 GB of voicemail storage. Clearly this is aimed at small businesses and midsized companies that are on the smaller side.

It looks like CudaTel will be reselling Snom and Polycom phones with this PBX as well as Polycom and LifeSize conference phones.

It’s an intersting entry into the market for Barracuda, which is known for its network security appliances. As IDC Research Director Abner Germanow posed in Tweet today, how will Barracuda’s channel sell this? Do you want to buy your PBX from a a security VAR or reseller?

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