I have spent many years in telephony from the early 90′s with proprietary, stand-alone IVR systems, class 5 programmable switches for pre-paid calling card and international call back platforms to a variety of legacy and IP-PBX solutions. Earlier this year, I met the Cudatel team at Barracuda and was immediately impressed with the depth of knowledge, professionalism and deep commitment to the channel. What really got my attention, however, was the disruptive go-to-market strategy for the Cudatel product. For me, the difference started with support: 24×7, USA based, live answer, no auto-attendant, no hassle and available when cut-overs usually occur – after hours! Having worked for other manufacturers, this was a refreshing departure from the expectations the industry has set and addresses one of the major sources of frustration for partners and customers alike. A quick web search confirmed my conclusion that Barracuda support is first rate in the partner and customer’s eyes.
Next was the product itself. Clearly the Cudatel development team has leveraged the knowledge and experience in networking, application delivery, and security to build a product that you can set and forget. I have run at least 3 other IP PBX solutions in my house from open source to commercial products. In every case I have had to configure settings in my router and “play” to get things working just right, especially with remote phones. I had also brought a second SIP trunk into my home which worked perfectly on outbound, but inbound dropped calls after 30 seconds. Hours were spent trying to “fix” the issue from SIP trunk provider, carrier, router manufacturer to PBX manufacturer. Ultimately, the fix was to tear out that system and drop in my Cudatel which worked perfectly without any additional changes elsewhere in my network (I guess we now know where the problem was). Bottom line is my system was up and running with dial tone, 2 auto-provisioned phones and one non-standard SIP device in about 35 minutes. Enterprise class features such as call recording, fax support, voicemail to email, automated attendant and queuing were all standard in the box – exactly the feature set our customers would use every day.
I now have 11 SIP devices configured with my Cudatel (excessive for the house but with kids, cameras to watch and listen to the pool, and wireless devices, not completely absurd) and could add as many more as I wish without ever paying a user fee. This illustrates my next point which is: the business model for acquiring a Cudatel is different – VERY different. Because Barracuda doesn’t charge by the user or by feature, you can purchase a Cudatel, add hardware assurance and energize updates for 5 years (a total of 3 line items!), and know your total cost of ownership for 5 years. We even throw in a new server after 4 years with the hardware assurance option to ensure your hardware as well as the software is up to date! I can’t think of another vendor who can make this claim. And, since we allow you to bring your own PSTN interfaces and SIP trunks as well as IP devices (including softphones for mobility and cost reduction), you have complete control over the entire infrastructure.
Finally, it’s about the team. Whether you need pre-sales help from the very capable sales team, technical support or a local partner to assist with installation, training, purchasing, financing or services, there is a highly motivated and professional organization to assist you every step of the way. I am proud to be a member of this team and stand ready to assist you in any way I can. Drop me a line, let me know what you think, tell me how Cudatel and Barracuda Networks has simplified your telecommunications strategy and lowered your costs. I look forward to hearing from you.
Oh, did I mention 30 day, no obligation evaluations?