With Tropo.com, Voxeo has thrown their hat into the Voice API ring. Announced just a few minutes ago here at eComm, Tropo is a hosted solution allowing developers to create voice applications using high level programming languages, rather than mucking with VoiceXML. The fundamental idea is that developers should be able to create voice applications in the language of their choice, with a simple to learn and simple to deploy business model.
As a cloud based system, deploying applications built on Tropo couldn’t be much easier. Voxeo allows calls in by regular telephone, SIP, Skype or iNUM. They provide outbound calling capabilities as well, and host 70,000 ports of calling capacity. The business model is contract free, with no setup costs – just pay them a straight 3 cents per min, and you can use your credit card to do that.
Included in the package are speech rec and text to speech, call recording, a rich API of telephony functions, and the capabilities to mash-up these features with web applications. Shortly, they will also provide conferencing capabilities as well.
Tropo.com looks promising. It seems a flexible and easy to deploy solution for single channel media applications which might traditionally be provided by an IVR and a great way to deliver compelling Voice 2.0 applications. Their pricing model, however, would be prohibitively expensive for a traditional conferencing application. Perhaps that model will change by the time they launch their conferencing features.