Asterisk, the open-source software behind many hi-tech web-based services such as internet protocol (IP) telephony and business VoIP (voice over internet protocol), is to benefit from a significant upgrade which will include the capacity to handle high definition (HD) visual and audio transmissions.
The new version of Asterisk, called Asterisk10, is currently being put through its paces by owner Digium in a series of late beta stage test runs.
The new version will also feature improvements to both its audio and videoconferencing communications facilities.
Up until now, Asterisk has only been capable of handling audio signals of between eight and 16-KHz. The new version will increase this maximum to 192-KHz.
At the same time, Asterisk’s video conferencing software, MeetMe, has been replaced with a product called ConfBridge, which is capable of handling HD-standard transmissions.
ConfBridge is also compatible with videoconferencing reception equipment that makes use of session initiation protocol (SIP) trunking.
Faxes and texts across different platforms are also expected to benefit from the new version of Asterisk.
Commenting on the new upgrade, director of Asterisk at Digium, Steve Sokol, said that ‘it handles virtually any kind of media you want to pass through it’; adding that the software was sufficiently flexible to ensure both compatibility and optimum service levels between different platform standards:
“In conferencing applications, Asterisk 10 will be able to deliver HD audio to participants on the corporate network, even if some participants are dialled in from phone lines that can’t support that level of quality. The idea is to send each participant the best quality the equipment is capable of receiving”.
Meanwhile, Asterisk is also due to launch a specialist version, Asterisk SCF, in the first few months of 2012, aimed at larger businesses. Asterisk SCF will be capable of being broken down into service components and spread across different servers if required.