If there’s a cloud for compute, for storage, for Java programmers, for those who love Ruby and any other variation under the sun why shouldn’t there be a VoIP cloud to deliver telephony over the Internet? Sure, there are services out there from Bandwidth.com, Twilio, Asterisk and many other companies, but with the launch of Whistle, the 2600 Hertz Project wants to make building a VoIP cloud cheaper and easier than ever.
The company, which has thus far supported itself through consulting revenue and has also launched an open source PBX that we covered called blue.box, is now taking things up a notch with Whistle. The software is designed to handle up to a billion calls per month on about six virtualized (or not) servers and can connect seamlessly to run on or with Rackspace clouds, Amazon’s clouds or on a private cluster of machines. Instead of paying a penny or so per minute to a VoIP company, businesses that want to add voice calling over the web to their social network, their app or their role-playing game just deploy this software and take care of it themselves.
Darren Schreiber, co-founder and CEO of 2600 Hertz, says the plan is to offer folks the source code for Whistle, but to support and sell services on top of it, in much the same that every other open source software company plans to make money. Schreiber says the services include a voice mail platform, a minute reseller platform, a conference call serve and will include many more. Asterisk, Twilio and Bandwidth.com, all also offer similar services, but 2600 Hertz wants to make it easier to create your own VoIP company in the cloud. The software can handle the onerous duties of switching and tracking calls using Couch DB and a Rabbit MQ messaging layer. However, calls out to normal landlines on the old copper network will still require some kind of deal with an old-school phone company. It’s not a an all-IP world just yet.