There is little doubt that most information and communications technology capabilities are moving to the cloud. This is happening for obvious and well-documented reasons relating to operational efficiencies and effectiveness, and eliminating capital expenditures. Whether you are a small of medium business or a large enterprise, the arguments for moving your traditional PBX functionality to a hosted PBX solution are, in a word, compelling. 

That said, there is a vast opportunity for providers of hosted PBX solutions. One recent study found that rates of IP telecom adoption by SMBs are around 36 percent, even at the high-end over 250-seat part of the SMB segment – and it is under 20 percent in the under 20-seat segment. The research also found why the opportunity is so great. Most of the SMBs that have not made the move said they intend to do so in the next two years. 

Here’s a look at some of the companies in the PBX space and what they offer, both in the hosted, on-premises, and SaaS (News - Alert) arenas.


3CX is a 100 percent channel company and is the developer of 3CX Phone System and 3CX WebMeeting. 3CX Phone System for Windows is a software-based, open standards platform that replaces proprietary PBXs. It cuts telco costs and boosts company productivity and mobility with the 3CXPhone clients for iOS, Android, Mac and Windows. 3CX WebMeeting is a hassle-free web conferencing solution, which leverages WebRTC technology, eliminating the need for any plugins or clients. Browser-to-browser communication and click2call as well as advanced online classroom features are just a few of the popular features of 3CX WebMeeting. With 30,000 customers worldwide, some of the world’s leading companies and organizations use 3CX Phone System, including Boeing, McDonalds, Hugo Boss, Ramada Plaza Antwerp, Harley Davidson, Wilson Sporting Goods and Pepsi. Maintaining its global presence, 3CX has offices in the U.S., U.K., Germany, Hong Kong, South Africa, Russia and Australia.

8x8 Inc. 

8x8’s Virtual Office is a sophisticated, highly affordable, enterprise-class phone service over the Internet. Virtual Office provides essential enterprise-class telephony and unified communications features including auto attendants, an online dashboard, softphones, and mobile apps. Chat, presence management, third-party CRM and ERP integrations, and powerful analytics are also a critical part of this business telephony solution. Leveraging the power of VoIP to reduce costs, local, long-distance, and international calls are significantly more cost effective. Because it’s all in the cloud, customers typically save up to 90 percent off the start-up costs of traditional premises-based PBX systems and up to 50 percent off monthly phone bills. Virtual Office Analytics, meanwhile, offer easy-to-use dashboards and charts with intelligence that helps improve sales and customer service, monitors sales campaigns, and even phone system network health and call quality – using big data analytics.

Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise 

The Alcatel-Lucent OpenTouch Suite is a converged, open architecture, cloud-ready software application enabling multi-party and multimedia communications and collaboration on any device. Enterprises can choose between on-premises deployment or the as-a-service model. The OpenTouch Suite is provided as one easy-to-manage platform that leverages the customer’s investments in communications equipment. OpenTouch enhances real-time conversations with a consistent user interface for visual collaboration at the desk and on the go, while combining leading enterprise telephony services with instant messaging, HD video, and web conferencing into a single application. The latest OpenTouch release makes mobility a natural extension of the communication, collaboration, sharing, multi-tasking and multimedia experience supported on all major cell devices and tablets. Businesses can keep pace with consumer technology developments by providing a collaborative environment where business communications and applications enhance efficiency at work and adopt new ways to control IT costs.

Alianza (News - Alert)

Alianza radically transforms communications delivery so service providers thrive with strong margins, better service, and elegant management. Alianza’s Cloud Voice Platform is a web-scale, turnkey virtualized software solution that enables cable, mobile, telco and other broadband providers to rapidly launch and profit from residential and business VoIP services. The Cloud Voice Platform provides a rich feature set so service providers can customize multiple solutions for their business customers, including business lines, hosted IP PBX, UCaaS, and SIP trunking services. With APIs enabling back-office integration and comprehensive web-based management tools, Alianza automates and streamlines operations and significantly drives down time and costs related to subscriber activation and customer care. The power of Alianza’s cloud means lower total cost of ownership and a clear business case for VoIP with a zero-capex, success-based SaaS business model.

AudioCodes Ltd.

AudioCodes One Box 365 is the fastest and most cost-effective way to bring Skype for Business voice to your Office 365 deployment, replacing the traditional PBX. Part of AudioCodes’ One Voice for Skype for Business suite of products, AudioCodes One Box 365 is a versatile Skype for Business voice appliance solution for SMBs and enterprises that simplifies and accelerates enterprise voice deployments in conjunction with the Office 365 subscription for your HQ and your branches. Its benefits include simpler and faster to deploy over traditional on-premises deployment; improved voice and conferencing quality over a remote hosted platform; Skype for Business survivability in case of WAN failure; full UC without compromising cloud benefits; an approved Skype for Business hybrid split domain architecture; and the ability to be combined with AudioCodes IP phones and management tools. It also features Skype for Business server roles and media gateway/SBCs, all in one box; an intuitive GUI for self-management; a fully licensed SQL Server and Windows Server; full Skype for Business UC Enterprise Voice; simplified migration with dedicated Active Directory and Office 365 connectors; and it scales from tens of users to 5,000 users.


BroadSoft UC-One is a full unified communications experience that makes voice, video, business directories, call logs, and instant messaging and presence available on a single interface – regardless of the user’s preferred mobile device, type of connectivity (mobile, fixed line, etc.), or communication service connectivity (hosted or premises-based PBX). UC-One includes a strong set of hosted PBX features essential to a unified communications offer. From simple find me/follow me functionality that will simultaneously ring to fixed mobile convergence applications to making and receiving business calls on personal mobile devices, UC-One’s calling features are tied directly to the business dial plan. UC-One integrates seamlessly with advanced telephony features including call center and ACD, as well as front office applications like auto attendant and receptionist. With UC-One, service providers have the flexibility to deploy hosted PBX and UC services via the BroadWorks platform, or as a complete managed hosted service from BroadCloud, BroadSoft’s cloud infrastructure.


Denwa has a team that’s been working on IP telephony since 1995 and with telephony project experience with NASA in 2000. Denwa is a financially sound business, and it increases its sales between 30 percent and 40 percent each year. Denwa sees UC as a concept for interconnecting everything everywhere with complete system integration and communication and full collaboration. The company’s UC SIMPLE platform includes complete IM functionality, a directory, video capability, social network and collaboration, along with mobile integration. Denwa also offers access control, cameras, firewalls, IP PBXs, media gateways, phones (including DECT phones and video phones), PoE switches, routers, SBCs, videoconferencing solutions, and WebRTC integration.

Digium Inc.

Digium Switchvox is the award-winning business phone system that delivers powerful UC tools, mobility applications, and robust calling features. Switchvox can be deployed on-premises, as a hosted service with Switchvox Cloud, or as a hybrid solution, providing a fully featured UC system for companies of any size. With its all features included pricing model, Switchvox solves your business communications problems, without the worry of complex feature licensing – and at a fraction of the cost of most systems on the market. Coupled with Digium IP phones, or the Switchvox Softphone for mobile, Switchvox provides an unmatched user experience for any job role. Switchvox Cloud gives companies the power and customization capabilities of a premises-based system and the cost savings of a hosted service, eliminating costly, up-front capital expenses. Companies can rely on the solid and secure network infrastructure of Switchvox Cloud, allowing them to reduce or completely eliminate the need for IT resources to manage a phone system. Starting as low as $12.99 per month, Switchvox Cloud makes it affordable for companies of all budget sizes to take advantage of modern UC features as an easy way to solve business communications problems.

Grandstream Networks 

Grandstream’s UCM series of IP PBX appliances provide SMBs and enterprise customers with Asterisk (News - Alert)-based, open source, licensing-free solutions for delivering secure and reliable voice, video, data and mobility apps. The UCM6100 series IP PBXs support up to 300 users, 500 extensions, and 60 concurrent calls. The UCM6510 IP PBX handles up to 2000 users, 200 concurrent calls, and supports E1, T1 and J1 networks. Out-of-the-box and requiring no on-site technical personnel to install or maintain, the UCM series IP PBXs come fully equipped with robust hardware and software features required for a sophisticated phone system solution. Users can setup and provision an entire communications solution in minutes thanks to the Auto-Discovery and Zero-Configuration options built-in to the UCM’s Web UI. It’s an ideal hassle-free, on-site solution because its simplicity and ease of management requires no on-site IT personnel.  The system can be managed remotely, all hardware and software comes standard, lifetime firmware updates are included, and its compact size requires minimal dedicated physical footprint. Combine all these attributes with extreme affordability and an extensive list of enterprise-grade voice, video, data and mobility features, and the UCM IP PBX delivers what business customers require in a unified communication solution.

Metaswitch Networks

Metaswitch Networks designs, develops, delivers, and supports commercial and open source software solutions for network operators. Our high performance software runs on commercial, off-the-shelf hardware, as appliances or in the cloud. We package this software into solutions that are redefining business communications. Our software enables network operators to deploy market winning SIP trunking, hosted PBX, and contact center solutions – all incorporating rich, unified communications and collaboration functionality. Metaswitch Business Communications empowers its network operator customers to bring products to market quickly and deliver an exceptional quality of experience by virtue of our robust MetaView network management software and analytics. Metaswitch's Accession Unified Communications client expands telephony applications to desktops and mobile devices over any broadband network allowing employees to better collaborate and connect with colleagues and customers. UC also includes conferencing, instant messaging and presence, video, collaboration, and integration with third-party productivity applications.

NEC America

UNIVERGE 3C is a software-based platform that provides businesses with unified communications and collaboration. It includes voice, voicemail, unified messaging, presence, collaboration tools, native mobility, voice/video/web conferencing, ACD, call recording, and more. It provides native SIP services, business continuity, a services-oriented architecture with web-service support along with comprehensive administration management tools. It integrates with Microsoft (News - Alert) Exchange and Active Directory, providing a powerful, fully-featured UC solution. It offers adaptive clients that operate consistently across smartphones, tablets, and desktops – optimizing workforce productivity, anywhere/anytime access, call control support, and UC features for mobile/remote workers. All users can selectively utilize audio, video, screen sharing, document presentation, file sharing, remote control, co-browsing, and voting/polling. It delivers continuous high availability and disaster recovery with unmatched security, scalability, interoperability, and reliability. It meets the most stringent security and interoperability requirements of the U.S. Department of Defense. UNIVERGE 3C’s architecture is certified by Joint Interoperability Task Command and accredited as a UC Session Controller, meaning it meets critical interoperability requirements achieving 99.999 percent reliability. Operating across premises, cloud or hybrid environments, UNIVERGE 3C’s standards-based components and distributed software architecture deliver unmatched flexibility, reliability and scalability.


Swyx is a complete software-based unified communications system that can be installed on-premises or accessed via the cloud. Working on any device from desktop PC, a smartphone through to a tablet, SwyxWare provides full collaboration between individuals or teams through a single interface for business IP-based communications including voice, video, text, and IM. Liaising on projects or tasks is facilitated further through its support for other third-party applications such as Microsoft SharePoint or MeetingZone, allowing groups to work on shared documents. Swyx is the only vendor that aims its solutions at the SMB market and is one of the few open software systems that can automatically pull in information from any back office or web resource into a single on-screen view. For example if a customer calls about an order, the soft client will automatically pop up all details drawn from the relevant CRM database. With Swyx's built-in rich presence, staff can grasp at-a-glance the availability and the presence status of other colleagues, whether they are in the office, on the road, working from home. This and other information give valuable clues to quickly find the best communication channel for reaching any contact. This is also true for the intelligent call routing, which allows incoming queries to be automatically re-directed to the most relevant department or person.

Toshiba Telecommunication Systems Division

Toshiba offers three business telephone solutions: its VIPedge cloud-based business telephone solution and two on-premises solutions, IPedge VoIP system and Strata CIX IP converged system. Toshiba’s solutions give SMBs and enterprises a choice of how they communicate, allowing users to create a hybrid cloud networked environment to meet the needs of their individual locations. Toshiba also offers the IPedge Application Server that enables Strata CIX systems to run the IPedge applications. Toshiba’s cloud solutions and on-premises systems deliver affordable business solutions that enable users to communicate effectively on the device of their choice from virtually anywhere. Toshiba’s UCedge unified communications solution delivers visibility and Internet, working across all of the Toshiba phone systems and third-party devices, regardless of the endpoint.  UCedge is compatible with smartphones and tablets as well as PCs and Mac computers. Toshiba’s applications also include contact center, conferencing and collaboration, mobile apps, SIP trunking, and system administration. Toshiba’s promise to “never leave a customer behind” ensures smooth migration between all the solutions, including reuse of telephones and some station cards. Toshiba sells via its network of Authorized Toshiba Dealers with more than 500 locations nationwide. 

VoIP Innovations (News - Alert)

At VoIP Innovations we provide wholesale VoIP DIDs as well as origination, termination, E911, hosted billing and fraud detection services that are all designed to work seamlessly with any PBX. We use technology to aggregate, innovate, and automate daily operational processes. Our mission is to develop tools that save our customers time and allow them to focus on the more important parts of their business. We provide a wealth of resources and knowledge throughout our blog, and we even offer a free trial to test our services. 

VoIP Logic


?VoIP Logic is a neutral provider of hosted PBX/unified communications platform-as-a-service to service providers that offer communication services to small business and larger enterprise customers. By combining technology from a suite of best-of-breed manufacturers including BroadSoft, GENBAND, IBM, and Oracle Communications, VoIP Logic packages the technology platform with a single point of technical support and engineering. From hands on deployment through ongoing maintenance and enhancement, the company allows service providers the capabilities to stay current with the state-of-the-art in technology without giving up control or flexibility as you create and package customized service bundles. With a model that embraces per service provider differentiation and does not seek to compete with its partners, VoIP Logic is fully focused on running the technical underpinnings of your next generation communications infrastructure.

Vonage Business

Vonage Business provides a robust set of product offerings, Vonage Essentials and Vonage Premier, to serve the full range of business segments – SMB, the mid-market, and enterprise. Vonage’s portfolio of products serves single-person companies to those with thousands of employees spread over multiple locations. Vonage Essentials is targeted to smaller customers and utilizes Vonage’s proprietary call processing platform, which is purpose-built for SMB customers. It provides a cost-effective, scalable, feature-rich solution, delivered over the top of a customer’s existing broadband. Vonage Premier offerings are tailor made for the mid-market and enterprise segments. Vonage Premier is a feature-rich/fully managed solution that utilizes BroadSoft’s enterprise-grade call processing platform, provides robust QoS, and is delivered over Vonage’s national MPLS network with 19 PoPs across the country. Specific UCaaS services include hosted PBX, SIP trunking, mobile integration, CRM integration, call center + contact center, audio conferencing, web conferencing, HD videoconferencing, hosted call recording, fax to email, and integration with third-party software applications or APIs enabling unified collaboration with other web-based tools, and more. In addition, Vonage’s gUnify middleware technology connects a cloud communications platform with today's most widely used SaaS business applications, like Salesforce, Clio, ZenDesk, and Google for Work to name a few.

Edited by Kyle Piscioniere