For vendors of Private Automatic Branch Exchange (PABX) equipment and companies providing ICT support services to enterprise or small businesses, selling Voice over IP (VoIP) services into their client base is an attractive business opportunity. It can lower telephony costs for the client, while earning the vendor or service provider a percentage of ‘per minute’ revenues. The challenge, however, has been finding a connectivity solution that is robust, reliable and cost effective enough to make VoIP a viable business proposition. XDSL has an answer – guaranteed 32-channel Diginet connectivity at a fraction of the traditional cost, together with a full management platform, or a fully managed third-party solution option.
Notes Danie Fourie, director at XDSL: “There is no denying that Voice over IP can provide a cost saving over traditional analogue voice connectivity, generally a minimum of 30%. The challenge until now, however, has been that a platform of sufficient capacity to run this communication service, i.e. a Diginet line, has been prohibitively expensive. ADSL connectivity has thus far been the most cost effective option for organisations attempting VoIP but it is not very efficient or effective. Being a shared, best effort 512k service, a VoIP user will begin to experience latency and jitters as soon as usage on the line ramps up. Voice communication is a key business tool and you cannot sell a poor service into your client base. The risk to the business is simply too high to justify any cost saving. This has given VoIP a bad name, hindering uptake in the market and opportunities for the channel.”
“XDSL’s Diginet solution, and the management platform that goes with it, is tailored to not only secure the business a cost saving by allowing it to switch to VoIP with confidence, but drive quality voice, and facilitate excellent management by the business itself, or a channel partner.”
Diginet at a fraction of the cost
A 32-channel Telkom Diginet line would cost you R3 500.00 per month with a R20 000.00 installation fee. With XDSL, the cost is reduced to R2 200.83 a month and only a R4 000.00 installation fee. For an 8-channel Diginet solution from XDSL, which would be suitable for about 40 users (depending on average usage profile), will cost you R 1 240.83, which is comparable with an ADSL solution.
XDSL’s comprehensive Diginet connectivity solution offers guaranteed throughput, is fully managed and includes many of the additional components that other suppliers of Diginet solutions charge for separately. For example, XDSL’s Diginet offering includes the rental of Cisco routers, rental of the Diginet line, and Voice over Internet Broadband Enhancement (ViBE) software and licences. Furthermore, for an additional fee of R999.99, XDSL can offer an additional on-site PBX option which delivers redundancy in the event of a Diginet line failure, lowering the risk of any downtime.
While a 32-channel Diginet line in a call centre, where agents are constantly either making or receiving calls, will serve 32 people. In a business where calls are only intermittently made, a 32-channel Diginet line can serve as many as 200 people and there’s the advantage of the management platform.
Add a management platform
The XDSL VoIP management platform is a multi-tenant solution that offers all the tools a business, a VoIP reseller or an ICT support provider needs to do billing and technical support of a VoIP service. Thus, if the reseller is skilled in the use and management of VoIP (e.g., a PABX company), it can white label the service, using the XDSL management platform for live billing, live configuration and more. Alternatively, an agent can resell the service and XDSL will offer the support required.
For the ICT support service provider that is not highly skilled in VoIP technologies or does not want to acquire these skills, Diginet and VoIP service provision can be transparently managed by XDSL, with the agent or ICT support provider as the ‘owner’ or the client relationship earning commission on per minute revenues.
VoIP is viable and its growing in South Africa
Fourie offers an excellent example of savings by a multi-national client. The client has adopted VoIP as its voice communication channel of choice. It makes use of the management platform, with all billing done through this single portal. “The Telkom cost of R90 000 dropped to R60 000 with the implementation of the XDSL Diginet VoIP solution,” notes Fourie. “A large portion of that saving was made on the shift from per minute to per second termination that XDSL offers. Within three months of adopting the solution, however, this client’s monthly bill is down to less than R30 000 per month. This was thanks to its use of the management platform. It set up alerts to identify abuse of the service.”
New breed of telecoms solutions – and providers
“XDSL’s philosophy is to keep infrastructure prices as low as possible, maximise benefits to our clients, which includes all resellers and channel players, and deliver service excellence. Our business and operations model supports this to the hilt. We believe at XDSL that we are among the first of a new breed of telecoms and connectivity service providers that offer a full integrated managed and guaranteed service – with pricing, tools, quality of service, and support that encourages business growth up and down the channel.”