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Pika Connect for Skype: The Fusion of Asterisk and Skype

My friends at Pika have announced commercial availability of their second generation Pika Connect for Skype. Their solution marries Skype and Asterisk together to allow Skype facing call centers to be constructed. Moreover, if you’re already running an Asterisk PBX with a DID pointed at it, it obviates the need to buy a Skype-in number.  And, if you’re running Skype, and want to terminate your calls on the PSTN, or SIP, you can also do that, without incurring Skype-Out charges.

Cool!

Bill Campbell, over at the Skype Journal, as a whole lot more detail, and here’s the press release. 


PIKA Technologies Connects Skype to Asterisk Open Source PBX 

Combination of Technologies Provides Powerful Business Communications Capabilities

Ottawa, Canada- September 11, 2006 – PIKA Technologies today announced the upcoming release of a new addition to the PIKA Connect product line.  The second generation PIKA Connect for Asterisk is a channel driver for the popular open source Linux-based Asterisk PBX, enabling connectivity to Skype.

This release of PIKA Connect for Asterisk, available in November, allows Asterisk-based applications to use Skype to receive incoming and/or make outgoing calls, provides access to the calling Skype ID profile information (caller ID), and has touch tone (DTMF) detection capabilities.  Skype clients running on Windows based PCs are connected to the channel driver via PIKA’s AllOnHost™ (host-based) voice processing technology.  Skype clients can be distributed across an unlimited number of Windows PCs to achieve the density requirements the voice application may require. 

 “Given the ever increasing use of Asterisk in business communication solutions and the rapid adoption of Skype as a business-to-business communication tool it seemed natural to do a mashup of these two very popular technologies,” said David Clarke, Business Development Manager at PIKA Technologies. “Our second generation PIKA Connect for Asterisk channel driver makes it a seamless exercise to Skype-enable your Asterisk based solution.”

PIKA has already implemented this technology in their own corporate PBX system, allowing customers to contact them directly via Skype. Using Skype, customers are able to call PIKA from anywhere in the world, free of charge, using any computer with Skype installed.  It is as simple as a click of a button on the PIKA website: http://www.pikatechnologies.com/   The Skype call in turn is carried over the Skype network and terminated directly on PIKA’s Asterisk based auto attendant.  No extra phone lines or ports on the PBX are required.  Once answered, callers can navigate the auto attendant in the normal fashion using the Skype dial pad (touch tone digits).  All internal extensions as well as speed dials for sales and support are accepted. 

PIKA is currently enlisting Beta candidates for the second generation PIKA Connect for Asterisk.  If you are an Asterisk user or developer interested in running a Beta trial, please contact David Clarke at david.clarke@pikatech.com or skype davidclarkepika

See PIKA Technologies at the Fall VON show, September 11 to 14th, 2006, Booth 1366 or visit http://www.pikatechnologies.com/

About PIKA
PIKA Technologies designs and manufactures plug in media processing hardware and software building blocks that connect computer systems to TDM, IP, and IM-based networks to provide advanced voice and fax services. For almost two decades PIKA Technologies has been serving companies around the world that require voice cards to design sophisticated phone services for recording systems, voice service applications, fax broadcast and PC-PBX systems. The company has built a reputation for delivering innovative products and exceptional technical support by working closely with its customers. Headquartered in Ottawa, ON, Canada, the company has ranked in The Branham300, an authoritative ranking of successful Canadian high tech firms, for five consecutive years. Visit http://www.pikatechnologies.com/ or call +1-613-591-1555 for more information.
© PIKA Technologies Inc., 2006. PIKA is a registered trademark and AllOnHost and PIKA Connect are trademarks of PIKA Technologies Inc.

For more information, please contact:

Miriam Rautiainen
Head of Marketing
PIKA Technologies, Inc.
(613) 280-1049
miriam.rautiainen@pikatech.com

{ 2 comments… add one }

  • David Mould September 11, 2006, 4:22 am

    Alec, I'd like to get a sense for the comparison between Pika's hardware and software solution with RSDevs PSGw solution. I'm guessing the key is in the ease of integration??

  • Wojtek September 11, 2006, 12:46 pm

    David,
    PIKA solution contains two components; a channel driver which integrates with Asterisk and a client component.
    Our channel driver communicates with a client (residing on an ordinary PC) using PIKA's proprietary signaling protocol and PIKA's RTP.
    You can obviously run multiple clients on a single PC.
    The call routing is done using standard Asterisk dial plan.
    Main benefits:
    Very good audio quality due to RTP processing done in kernel mode.
    Dialplan flexibility
    Better integration with Asterisk (native switching between Skype and PIKA's hardware in future releases)
    Commercial grade support

    — Wojtek

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