Initial Impression

Discussion in '3CX Phone System - General' started by JST, Jan 9, 2017.

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  1. JST

    JST New Member

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    I am coming from Elastix and FreePBX. Here is what I like and what I don't like.

    1. Overall Impression
    3CX is a solid solution that can be implemented fairly easily. Depending on your environment (static vs DHCP, firewall, etc.) you might encounter some smaller issues, but most people should be up and running fairly quickly.

    2. Functionality
    I see significant improvements over FreePBX and Elastix. Especially, when it comes to combining extensions for one user (Desk, PC Application, Mobile Application and Mobile Phone), it feels well rounded and provides functionality the other solutions don't offer.

    3. Licensing
    The free edition provides a lot of functionality, but it falls short when it comes to trunks. The one trunk limit feels very harsh! I personally like to test new products in a home environment before I recommend them to customers or colleagues. With a one trunk limit, I cannot recommend this solution because I don't know if trunk fail-over is working (or supported). While my company is not a VoIP service provider, we do provide Fortune 500 companies in the United States with management consulting. This might include vendor selection and, on occasion, the selection of a VoIP/PBX solution (in combination with other expertise we provide).

    Keeping this in mind, I feel that restricting users to one trunk is a fundamental restriction that does not allow me to properly evaluate/test business grade functionality in a home environment. I mean 3CX is already limiting the amount of simultaneous connections. So, why did you also have to put a one trunk limit? Most free users won't care, but people who are testing with the added value of potentially recommending your solution are severely impacted.

    I am also not saying that you need to enable all features in the free edition. I mean I completely understand that you need to make money as well, but the trunk limit feels like an unnecessary restriction.

    4. Purchase Options
    While the license pricing itself seems fair, I am surprised that your licensing model does not include a SOHO option. I mean I am living in Silicon Valley and there are a lot of people who are running a small PBX at home, home or micro office environment. These folks typically need 2 trunks, 2-4 simultaneous calls and, ideally, up to 25 users for a conference call (I guess this might not be possible if conference call users are counted as simultaneous calls?).
    What's the benefit? People in this market segment are typically very technical. You can count on them testing your solution and finding issues, potentially solving issues (or finding workarounds) and suggesting product enhancements. Here in Silicon Valley, I see more and more companies (e.g. Sophos) embracing and benefiting from this model.

    5. Suggested Enhancements
    I am stunned that the mobile applications don't include an option to make video calls. I mean you already have the functionality in the windows client and so it should be merely some development on Android/IOS at this time. Hoping to see that soon!

    Anyhow, if my feedback is beneficial to 3CX please give another thought on the trunk limit and, maybe, increase it to two.

    Thank you for providing us with a great solution!
     
  2. Sopock

    Sopock Member

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    Before v15 there was 2 SC limit!
    https://www.3cx.com/partners/
     
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  3. YiannisH_3CX

    YiannisH_3CX Support Team
    Staff Member 3CX Support

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    @JST thank you for your feedback, everything constructive is always welcome :) Please take a look of our partner program that will give the opportunity to test the full capabilities of our product.
     
  4. JST

    JST New Member

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    Thank you! I appreciate the feedback, but we are doing management consulting and so a partnership with a vendor that requires us to sell their product would exceed our role. Does the Affiliate Partner level have a sell requirement? We can easily meet all other requirements.

    That said I feel that one trunk is severely crippling the product. Based on Sopock's feedback, it appears that you used to have a 2 trunk limit which would be more sensible.

    In general, I prefer to recommend VoIP products that have a strong community because it is almost impossible for a vendor to test each and every VoIP provider. The same is true for other areas (firewall, hardware, etc.)

    Just take a look at Sophos: Most of their solutions are freely available to home users. They understand that many of these "home users" are actually people who work with potential customers. As such, they really value community feedback.

    I also don't think that a free license equals to a free solution. While a free license might reduce the cost to use your solution for community members, it always requires time and effort to make something work. For example, I found that my Sophos firewall gave me some trouble when the built-in VoIP feature was activated. It took me about 2 hours to determine the root cause. Since I shared my solution on your forum, it might eventually save time for a paying customer who would otherwise contact support.

    Just giving an example why a good community is important. Anyhow, just my two cents on this topic!
     
  5. cobaltit

    cobaltit Active Member

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    @JST

    If you live in the Silicon Valley and you provide management consulting to Fortune 500 companies then you can afford the $295 if you really want to test.

    Your logic on needing more trunks in the free version to know if trunk fail-over is working or supported is flawed. A simple call to 3CX sales or a 3CX partner can tell if you it is supported. 3CX supports trunk fail-over the same as any other PBX. It's really more of a design/implementation question than a 'feature' of 3CX.
     
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  6. leejor

    leejor Well-Known Member

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    Up to version 14, there was no limit on extensions or the number of trunks. The limitation was the number of simultaneous calls. Four without the Demo key (which unlocked all of the features), and two with. The advantage was that you could apply a backup from a previous version and actually test with all of the trunking intact. Sadly, that is no longer the case.
     
  7. JST

    JST New Member

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    @cobaltit
    I disagree, but thank you for sharing your opinion.

    Quite frankly I don't think that any of my customers would expect (or be willing) to spend any money to test a product. It is an industry standard to get time limited fully functional versions. Anyhow, I would hope that partners can provide this to any interested customers.
     
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