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Digium (Asterisk) versus ShoreTel - Purchasing Decision

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Last Modified: 2012-09-05
I am trying to gather some information that will assist me in making a purchase decision, Digium or ShoreTel.

Approx 50 users, 3 Sites, 3 Appliances (Larger System at HQ, 2 Smaller Systems at Branches). Plan to Use SIP over Fiber with a few backup Analog Lines, Some Blackberry/Softphone Integration, Unified Communications with Dashboards, 1 Main Company and 2 Smaller Companies In-House which will require separate Call Distribution/Auto-Attendants.

The pricing that has been presented by the two companies bidding for my business is about the same. Both systems will provide failover to alternate locations.

Everything with Digium is self-contained within the appliances (Voice Mail, Administration, RAID, etc). ShoreTel requires a seperate server (which has been factored into the price comparison). Not sure if this is a good thing or just something else to maintain.

Digium Appliance (for HQ) has Redundant Fans and Power Supplies, ShoreTel doesn't.

It seems as though the Digium System has more features included. ShoreTel has them too but you have to pay to unlock.

The management of both systems seems very straight forward (although I have to maintain the additional server with ShoreTel).

I have also read that ShoreTel isn't the best choice for SIP (not sure how true this is or not). I do know we've been quoted a SIP 'Connector' called a SIPerator with the ShoreTel system.

Adding phones/users will be more expensive log-term, should I choose ShoreTel.

From what I can tell ShoreTel is very reliable (the main reason they are still in the running), I'm not certain about the Digium System.

Can anyone provide any additional information (or can help substantiate what I have stated) to assist with my purchase decision?

I am only looking at Digium and ShoreTel and will not be considering any other manufacturer/vendor. I have already narrowed the choices down to these last two providers.

Thank you very much.
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