Over on Mr. Blog:
The rebels are at it again. This time they’ve built a free, open-source VoIP platform for embedded devices. It’s a VoIP PBX in box, a cheap affordable box. The box, in fact, is a common Linksys router. It’s called SIPatH (hey nobody said geeks know how to name products).
So take a standard Linksys router and toss this free code on it, and you have yourself your own SIP proxy server. No more NAT problem (the router has a real IP address and and can properly map to all SIP phones on the NAT LAN). It’s open (not locked to a provider). This allows one to simultaneously use whatever services and PSTN termination provider one likes, in any mix and match fashion you like. Use a Brazilian telephony carier from your home in France. There is no such thing as local anymore.
In a related note, some other bright folks have squeezed (a limited version of) Asterisk onto the the Linksys WRT-G router: Asterisk on OpenWRT
These hacks may be still too geeky for a lot of people, but watch this space. It fortells a future. Look out telco copycats. Someone will make this a plug and play consumer product, and it’s probably not far away. Do you see yet where this is going?
We’ve got one of these running. Geeky, yes, but it works. What DOES the world look like when every router is a SIP proxy?
Your PSTN connectivity is outsourced to the lowest bidder. The only calls you pay for are calls that terminate on the PSTN.
Your “telephone number” is simply a SIP address terminating on your local SIP proxy. To call me, you use your SIP client to reach email@example.com – the SIP proxy I have at home.
The telephone network, as we know it, ceases to exist. Telephony is nothing more than an embedded application running on a common transport.