Editorial from IT EXPO East- Aren’t IP phones done yet?

Miami, FL – There are at least three vendors touting new IP phones or software/firmware upgrades to their phones here at IT Expo. I thought we were done with handsets already?

Digium is getting a lot spin along with a good measure of WTF by rolling out its own IP phones; three to be exact, all Java-programmable, all designed to be highly customizable with Asterisk and the Switchvox counterpart. It’s not “just XML” but phones that can have their core features accessed via Java.

Earlier this week, Panasonic announced it is introducing the first “open source programmable” phone or some such, a Linux-based model with Java. Interesting timing. Do brilliant minds think alike? Or is Digium OEM-ing from Panasonic?

And to top it all off, VTech wants to talk about its new firmware/code load for the line of SMB hardware it makes for AT&T.

For Digium, one working theory posted by @SteelyGlint is that the Asterisk company needs to make some more cash from hardware to make up for the decline in telephone card sales. Mmm, I can buy that, sorta.

Panasonic is following an evolutionary path, so a Java-programmable phone makes sense (even if they aren’t OEMing it on the side to Digium).

Will talk to VTech this evening and see what its latest brag is.

The net-net here is IP phones are still moving foward.

– Doug.

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