BLACK FRIDAY

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Black Friday shopping starts now at Bicom Systems. We are giving you early access to our sale this year with a free upgrade!

Buy our product SERVERware, the Standalone Edition and we will upgrade you to the Mirror Edition for FREE!

This sale is giving you:

  • A FREE built-in backup system
  • Expanded features and capabilities
  • Additional data protection
  • Real-time synced data
  • Cost efficiency

And ultimately, peace of mind.

If you were thinking of purchasing SERVERware, why not do it when you will get a FREE upgrade?

We launched our sale early and it is going until November 23, 2018, at 11:59 pm EST. Don’t miss out and act now on this limited time offer.

Shop our exclusive Black Friday sale now by emailing us at sales@bicomsystems.com with the subject line ‘Black Friday’.

Let your fingers do the shopping this year and place your order now!

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How to Choose a Virtualization Platform

My Post (5)How to choose a Virtualization Platform
Understanding what a virtualization platform is can be difficult, then having to choose the best platform for your business can be exhausting. Even though it has been around for a while, the virtualization concept is relatively new for some small-medium sized businesses and the big ones are still considering making the switch.

Below you’ll find 5 basics questions that will help you jump on the virtualization band wagon! Keep reading if you want some tips on How to Choose a Virtualization Platform.

To start,
What is a Virtualization Platform?
It is a virtual (not actual, not real, not tangible) machine that acts like a real computer with an operating system. So, instead of owning a physical server, you have a virtual one that can be hosted online. Cool right? It has virtual computer hardware platforms, storage devices and computer network resources. Everything you need in one place minus all the extra hardware.

Why should your business go Virtual?
We all know the old saying, ‘why fix it if it isn’t broke’ right? Although that may be common, the truth is that businesses have to stay innovative for their customers and clients! Going virtual has so many benefits such as:

–        Reducing IT Expenses
–        Boosting Efficiency
–        Better Disaster Recovery
–        Simplified Data Management
–        Reduction of Physical Servers (Goodbye to the days of ‘server rooms’)
–        Cooling and Power Costs are Reduced
–        Increasing Productivity

The list goes on…

Now we know the ‘what’ and ‘why’, but let’s focus on the ‘how’. (The real reason you clicked on this post).

How do you choose and switch to a Virtualization Platform?
Some companies may offer services you may not need and some may offer services you never thought existed.The trick is, to figure out what you need or want to get from your Virtualization Platform and find a company that does just that. When researching ask yourself the following:

–        Is their software user friendly?
–        Do they offer a free trial?
–        Will they be present at a trade show near you? That way you can meet their team!
–        Will they be compatible with the equipment your office already has?
–        How much is this going to cost?

And remember, ‘popular’ brands aren’t your only option. There are many fish in the sea of vendors and there will be the perfect one out there for you!

Although there are many options, in our unbiased opinion – we believe Bicom Systems to be one of the better choices. Which brings me to my next topic, the ‘who’.

Who do you choose?
Bicom Systems of course! The Virtualization Platform that Bicom Systems offers is called SERVERware. It is the only Virtualization Platform dedicated to Hosting Telephony & Unified Communications in the Cloud. Bicom Systems offers three different editions, so companies can choose what works best for their operations. If you want to learn more about SERVERware check out our website!

Ok maybe you don’t choose Bicom Systems. We won’t be that sad. But you may need to choose someone, which leaves this blog post to its final ‘w’ the ‘when’.

When do you choose a Virtualization Platform?
NOW! There is no time to waste in the virtual world.

Top Features You Should Look for in Hosted Telephony

Top Features You Should Look for in Hosted Telephony

Hosted Telephony, also known as Cloud telephony or hosted VoIP, is where the provider hosts and manages the business phone system in a private data center. It gives the re-seller access to lower costs, free IP calling, and features like voicemail to email, on-hold music, call parking etc.

A private branch exchange (PBX) is a private telephone network within a company or organization. Hosted Telephony is run on a PBX and can be used over a Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN), over the Internet (Hosted IP PBX via Internet Telephony also known as VOIP), or both.

There are many benefits to having hosted customers rather than on-premise ones. When a company chooses the hosted deployment, they are relieved of the burden of purchasing and maintaining the hardware.

The future is in Hosted – let’s explore the Top Features You Should Look for in Hosted Telephony:

Women using a smartphone in the display and technology advances in stores. Take your screen to put on advertising.

Time
By switching to Hosted Telephony, you and your customers are ultimately saving a great deal of time.

How Do You Ask?
With Hosted Telephony, desktop and mobile communication apps make it possible to work from anywhere with internet. Your customers will love that when they aren’t in the office they won’t be unavailable or miss calls. But – unified communications mean so much more than just staying in contact.

You are also going to save time with installation. Installation can be done remotely in a matter of days or even hours. There is no hardware to install or set up and no physical problems that could arise. It all can be installed by clicks of your keyboard and mouse.

Customization
You can customize! Some companies who offer hosted telephony offer customization. The customization makes it easier for your customers to add/remove features at any point. Maybe they want to start out with the basics and get their feet wet. Then after experiencing rapid growth, they are ready to go all in. This feature is also possible with the click of a few buttons.

By offering customization, you can meet more customer requirements with less hassle and customers get what they want, when they want it, how they want it. This moves us into our next topic.

Expanding Your Target Market
By offering different features and customization packages you can reach an array of different types of customers. If you have hosted, you can gain different customers who have different budgets. It allows them to pick the features they want without taking a hit to their wallets. It is a win for them and you.

Month-to-Month Hosted Partnerships
Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) is the key to your company’s profit, growth, and sustainability. Vendors who sell on-premise software sell to their customers one time. Although it is a big one-time check, they are back to square one looking for more customers. If you offer hosted to your customers, you will still receive ‘one-time’ checks and they will be smaller, BUT they will come every month! This long-term commitment from customers will result in continuance profit for your business.

Not to mention the relationship you will build from a month to month hosted partnership. Your company will help its customers grow by supporting and working with them and you will grow with them offering upgrades, add-ons, etc. If you give your customer all the pieces they need to be successful, like staying innovative, offering updates and being supportive they will stick with you for the long haul. Your customer’s commitment to your company will guarantee financial security for your bottom line.

Ultimately, Hosted Telephony is just more convenient. By switching to Hosted, it removes the burden of IT maintenance and extra support from your customer. You don’t have to purchase any servers, it frees up physical space and gives you and your customers a piece of mind that in an emergency they are protected.

Bicom Systems product PBXware is an example of a product that has all these features and more. PBXware was the world’s first and is the most mature Open Standards Turnkey Telephony Platform. If you want to learn more about Hosted Telephony, download our book on ‘7 Reasons You and Your Customers Should Switch to Hosted’.

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If you want to learn more about Bicom Systems, visit our website or email us at: sales@bicomsystems.com.

AstriCon 2018 Recap

AstriCon

Bicom Systems is in full swing this year for trade shows! We attended WISPAPALOOZA and AstriCon at the same time. How you ask? By dividing our best and brightest and conquering in Las Vegas, Nevada and Orlando, Florida!

If you have not gotten a chance to read our WISPAPALOOZA Recap, click here.

What is AstriCon?
AstriCon is a 3-Day user conference and exhibition that has been continuously running for the past 15 years. The event stimulates networking, education, expands awareness and discusses the future of the communications industry. AstriCon is used as a learning opportunity to hear from developers, customers and integrators. The whole event is dedicated to Asterisk.

Now you are probably asking, well what is Asterisk?
Asterisk is the most widely used Open Source Communications platform in the world! It is an open source framework for building communication applications, so it basically turns your ordinary computer into a communications server (Source: Asterisk). The project started back in 1999 and is now used by businesses, call centers, carriers, government agencies etc. across the globe. It is free and powers IP PBX Systems, VoIP gateways and much more.

The AstriCon Expo Floor gives businesses in the Asterisk community an opportunity to showcase their products and services. So, off to AstriCon we went!

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Q: Has Bicom Systems Attended AstriCon before?
A: Yes! Bicom Systems has been present in one way or another every year since AstriCon has begun.

Q: As a repeating attender, how was this year’s show different from in the past?
A:
This was the first year Sangoma ran the AstriCon event. The ‘curiosity’ types of attendees are slowly fading out because Asterisk is no longer ‘new’ and we are developing a mature crowd of guests. We noticed there were many opportunities to create new curiosity, for example in private conversation Bicom Systems expressed that the show would benefit hugely from a ‘hack-a-thon’.

The location of the show was held in the same place as last year, which may play a factor in number and of conventioneers that attended. With every trade show, there are always room for improvement and we are looking forward to seeing what Sangoma does next year!

Q: What did Bicom Systems do at AstriCon?
A: This year we were a Gold Sponsor for the event and an exhibitor. We had our own booth and showcased our new features and latest products. The attendees had a chance to meet our team and learn more about us as a company and the industry. As a guest, Bicom Systems had the ability to listen in on presentations, meet potential customers and network with other businesses in the communications industry.

Q: Did Bicom Systems have a key note slot this year?
A: No. Unfortunately, we did not reserve a key note slot for this year’s trade show. We anticipate making more contributions next year with our new products and services offered with our SERVERware.

45341035352_df0597df09_hQ: What kinds of companies attend AstriCon?
A: In the beginning, AstriCon attendees were primarily technicians. We then seen an increasing number of business owners beginning to attend. In the past years there has been a decline in business owners as mentioned before the event attracts a mature crowd and primarily the ‘same’ people.

Q: What is the best thing you get out of AstriCon every year?
A:
It is always interesting to speak with other businesses and learn new ways they are using Asterisks. The information sessions are always useful. This year Simon Woodhead, from Simwood, spoke on security and ‘Why We Must Prioritize Privacy’. The session was very informative, educational and hilarious. Also, the familiar smiley faces are always a plus!

Q: What was your main takeaway?
A:
  This year the event was smaller than in the past. It was intimate, but we realized we enjoyed when everyone was new and unfamiliar vs veterans and mature with the topics. Technology is changing and becoming more challenging, it would have been great to see those changes at AstriCon this year.

Q: What would you like to see differently next year?
A: 
A bigger event in a new location. Different and more presentations. New topics like ‘How to Increase Communication Sales’ or other suggestions from the Asterisk community.  This was their first year running the event and they have not had a chance to reflect. They still have a chance to improve it and we are looking forward to seeing their new ideas for AstriCon 2019!

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We would love to hear your thoughts from AstriCon! Leave a comment below and tell us what you thought about the conference. Feel free to contact us with suggestions for AstriCon.  We have the resources to research and deliver.

If you did not attend AstriCon or any trade show this year, read this previous blog post on ‘Why Trade Shows are Important to Attend’.

If you want to learn more about AstriCon User Conference, check out their website here.

WISPAPALOOZA 2018 RECAP

WISPAPALOOZA

Bicom Systems had another successful year at WISPAPALOOZA! This was our second year entering the trade show as a Platinum Sponsor and we are looking forward to WISPAMERICA 2019!

If you were at WISPAPALOOZA this year, did you see our new booth? Or get a chance to attend our User Group Meeting? If not, check out this previous blog post on ‘Why Trade Shows are Important to Attend’.

To start, what is WISPAPALOOZA?
WISPAPALOOZA, also known as WISPA, is a 5-day event that brings together the WISP (Wireless Internet Service Providers) world. Industry experts, leading suppliers and customers like you come together to network, learn, engage in demos and become inspired. This year it was hosted in Las Vegas, Nevada and had over 160 Exhibitors showcasing their products and services.

Team members from our global company came to WISPAPALOOZA from all over. Let’s hear their story!

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Q: Was this the first time Bicom Systems attended WISPAPALOOZA?
A:
No. This was our third WISPA event and second time attending WISPAPALOOZA. WISPA also hosts a tradeshow called ‘WISPAMERICA’ that we also attended this year.

Q: Was this the first time being a Platinum Sponsor?
A:
No. We were also a Platinum Sponsor last year.

Q: What did Bicom Systems do at WISPAPALOOZA?
A:
This year was a little different for us because we hosted our first ‘User Group Meeting’. We held this on Monday, before the show officially started and had three guest speakers.

Our guests covered topics such as; marketing, user experience, regulatory and compliance and it made our session more appreciated. The speakers generated a lot of conversation and interest from the attendees. The audience became very excited to upgrade to our latest versions once they saw what they were missing.

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Q: Are there any awards or prizes given out?
A:
Yes. There are 8 categories for awards. Bicom Systems was nominated for “Manufacturer of the Year”. Although we did not win, the WISPA board of directors spoke highly of our impact on the organization.

Q: Did you participate in any information sessions?
A:
Yes! There were many information sessions going on during the 5-day trade show. Information sessions are used to share expertise, network and learn more about the topic.

Saulio Reyes (Account Manager) from our team, alongside companies such as Amarillo Wireless, Powercode and Network Business Systems,  participated in an information session called ‘Scaling WISP from 0-1500’. It focused on how to scale up business operations and the best practices to do so.

Kevin Langford (Account Manager) also from Bicom Systems, spoke at ‘Starting a WISP 101’. There were 7 other speakers for this session and they analyzed the many considerations that are involved when getting a WISP started. Kevin focused his presentation mainly on not just selling internet and guided the audience into VoIP.

Finally, Kevin (Account Manager) also spoke at ‘WISP’s in the Clouds/UCaas and ‘How WISPs Can Capitalize’. These information sessions reminded customers that they are running a business first and a network second. They were extremely educational and discussed the opportunities companies have to grow their customer base.

Q: When you sponsor WISPA, you receive a keynote speaking slot. How did that go?
A: 
That is right. When you sponsor WISPAPALOOZA as a Diamond or Platinum sponsor you are given a Vendor Spotlight. On behalf of Bicom Systems, Account Manager Kevin Langford, presented a 1-hour product description Q&A information session. The presentation dissected each product and their many editions. It gave the audience a chance to learn in depth about our current and future products, their newer updates and much more. It was so engaging that everyone who attended the keynote, stopped into our booth afterward to learn more!

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Q: Aside from businesses, who attends WISPAPALOOZA?
A: (Kevin Langford):
 In my experience, you have 4 types of people who attend trade shows like WISPAPALOOZA.
1) Curious customers who are interested in learning about the industry
2) Consumers who want to start a WISP
3) Businesses who are a WISP/ISP
4) ‘Techie’s’ (Tech-i-es: ‘a person who is very knowledgeable or enthusiastic about technology and especially high technology’) – Merriam-Webster

Q: If other businesses and customers were to ask if WISPAPALOOZA was worth attending, what would your advice be?
A: (Kevin Langford):
 Have a game plan. You cannot be in two places at one time and although the committee tries not to schedule two popular information sessions at the same time, it happens. Research the vendors who are going to be there. Plan your days. Make a schedule.

Thanks for reading and we will see you at the next trade show!

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If you are still considering attending WISPAPALOOZA as a vendor, check out this blog post by Minim. The company’s CEO seamlessly breaks down the event and all the dos/don’ts all from a newbies perspective.

If you are interested in learning more about Bicom Systems visit our website here.