Every day, it seems, we’re reading about improvements to the quality of Internet telephony, or VoIP.
Just today, our team here at TMCnet reported on FreeSWITCH’s support for Xiph.Org’s “CELT” codec, a technology used for low-delay speech and audio communication. As we’ve written in the past, some experts say that VoIP forms the basis for all Unified Communications (News - Alert), so that ensuring a high quality of Internet telephony is critical.
Four years ago, a group of IT veterans in Taiwan founded a VoIP developer whose main product lines would include access devices, gateways, IP phones, WiFi (News - Alert) routers, embedded IP-PBXs and more.
That company, Soundwin, focuses on superior, high-quality VoIP and interoperability with other products.
Here’s a look at some of Soundwin’s portfolio:
Recently, I had a chance to put some questions to Michelle Shu, the company’s sales director, about the future of her company, navigating the economic slowdown and what she expects from President-elect Barack Obama’s administration.
In the course of our interview, below, Shu had some very direct advice for President Bush (beware).
Our exchange follows.
Rich Tehrani (News - Alert): Are you generally optimistic, pessimistic or realistic?
Michelle Shu: Always be optimistic, I look on the bright sight of things.
RT: How surprised are you at the global financial situation?
MS: It’s a disaster, especially for semiconductor and consumer electronics industries. Regarding the networking and telecom industry, there is some impact, but we still can survive in 2009.
RT: How is your company changing the way it does business as a result?
MS: It’s an uncertain world in 2009, so Soundwin would like to adjust our product road map and market strategy in the following year. We focus on projects that need customization. We not only provide a standard product, but also customize firmware and hardware for a niche market
RT: How have customers reacted to the slowing global markets? Do you see this time as an opportunity or a rough spot to get through quickly?
MS: We’ve talked about VoIP, and triple play that includes VoIP with an IAD device or a 3G router plus VoIP will be the trend. Soundwin is considering whether to develop the related product to meet the market’s need.
RT: What will companies need to do to survive this downturn?
MS: Those who have strong cash flow and a good marketing channel, and the ability to customize for special request, will survive in this downturn. Of course the BOM cost down also one of the ways to make profit.
RT: How do your company’s products help customers in a slow market?
MS: VoIP itself is a kind of money-saving product, and we offer more and more IAD devices bundled with VoIP, such as a fiber gateway and set-top box with VoIP, WiFi VoIP for a hot spot and IP-PBXs.
RT: What do you feel is the strongest segment of the communications space? Technology?
MS: I would say 802.11n plus VoIP, WiMax router plus VoIP, 3G router with USB port plus WiFi and VoIP. I think they’re the hot products.
RT: Which would you rather be president of and why? Google, Yahoo, Microsoft (News - Alert), Cisco, the United States.
MS: Google. They’re full of innovation and think of all the information you could get with Google. They’re Amazing.
RT: What does President Bush need to accomplish before he leaves office?
MS: Donate all his wealth and property.
RT: What does an Obama administration need to do to help communications and technology become more pervasive?
MS: Set up more infrastructure for telecoms in the United States and Africa.
RT: Will this slowdown present an opportunity to reinvest in your company/market? If so, where will you invest?
RT: Which country will present the largest opportunity for your company in 2009/10?
MS: Latin America, the whole region.
RT: What device(s) do you use and wish you used?
MS: WiFi ATA.
RT: If Nokia, RIM, Google and Apple (News - Alert) devices are stranded together on an island, who survives and why?
MS: Apple, because they got rich profit from the iPhone, even selling at a higher price, which means Applpe could find the low cost OEM manufacturer and have a good marketing strategy for selling. Apple knows how promote itself, so even living on an island, Apple knows how to sell out to survive.
RT: I understand you are exhibiting at ITEXPO which takes place Feb 2-4 2009 in Miami. What will you be showing there?
MS: IP-PBX/WiFi IP-PBX/GSM VoIP gateway, ATA/WiFi gateway, VPN gateway and IP Phone/2 – 24 port gateway.
RT: What sorts of companies/people should come to your exhibit?
MS: Telecom, call center, networking branding, PBX companies, and ITSPs.
Why should customers choose your company’s solutions – and how do they justify the expense to management?
MS: It’s made in Taiwan, manufactured in Taiwan, and Soundwin handled the core technology of the f/w and h/w. The quality competes with more famous companies but the price will be lower. Besides, Soundwin provides customization for each customer. After the visitors check Soundwin’s devices, they are willing to buy from Soundwin because we have the experience. Come to the Soundwin booth, we’ll show you what I mean.
RT: I am a purchasing decision-maker, why do I need to speak with you before I buy?
MS: Because I can guarantee the quality and I may give you the special offer at the Soundwin booth.
RT: What is your favorite part of your job?
MS: Getting news and knowledge from talking to customers. It makes me more global.
RT: What do you look forward to in the future and why?
MS: My hope is real. I wish stable growth for Soundwin in 2009, for no one to get fired and that all of us will survive this economic disaster.
Learn more about Soundwin at Internet Telephony Conference & EXPO — the biggest and most comprehensive IP communications event of the year. ITEXPO will take place in Miami, Florida, Feb. 2 to 4, 2009, featuring three valuable days of exhibits, conferences, and networking opportunities you can’t afford to miss. Visit Soundwin at booth #727 in the exhibit hall. Don’t wait. Register now!
Rich Tehrani is President and Group Editor-in-Chief of TMC. In addition, he is the Chairman of the world’s best-attended communications conference, INTERNET TELEPHONY Conference & EXPO (ITEXPO). He is also the author of his own communications and technology blog.
Edited by Michael Dinan