Announcing: SpeechBridge Cloud Native Edition!
Today marks a significant milestone for Incendonet. After many months of hard work, we are proud to announce SpeechBridge® Cloud Native Edition (CNE). Some of you have already picked up tidbits on this major new release, and we are extremely excited to give you the full scoop.
Cloud Native from the Ground Up
When we released the first version of SpeechBridge in 2006, SIP was just starting to take hold in the enterprise, everyone installed software from DVDs, and the Palm Treo was the must-have smartphone. We’ve all learned a lot since then, especially in regard to building, distributing, and running software. Specifically, two new technologies, Docker and Kubernetes, have made it possible to build SpeechBridge in a way that it can run anywhere without any code changes: on a local server, in your data center, and on any cloud provider. This means that you can run SpeechBridge in whichever environment works best for you.
That said, you can still run SpeechBridge without Kubernetes on virtual machines and appliances, just as you do now. The user experience also remains the same, over the phone and in the web interface, because the exact same SpeechBridge software runs everywhere.
SpeechBridge CNE is also an ideal complement to the telephony offerings of managed service providers, adding advanced speech-driven Communications Automation applications that are easy to provision and manage. We are regularly asked by resellers and customers if SpeechBridge supports various UCaaS platforms, and we hope to share more information on that topic very soon.
This new architecture also makes it easier to roll out updates much more rapidly than we do now, so you can expect new features, fixes, and improvements more frequently.
Also included in this new release:
- A new SIP User Agent with broader standards support
- Upgraded speech recognition engines with improved accuracy
- Hyper-V support
- C# 7 and more of the .NET Framework (including .NET Standard 2.0) available for building plugins
We hope you are as excited as we are about SpeechBridge CNE, and are itching for a chance to try it out. If you’d like to get early access, please click here to sign up for the CNE Beta program. Program members will be sent a Getting Started package that includes step-by-step instructions and free technical support for the beta.
Some older SpeechBridge appliances do not meet the hardware requirements of SpeechBridge CNE, specifically a 64-bit processor and 2 GB RAM. For customer deployments with current support subscriptions and reseller kits, we will be offering discounts to upgrade to a new appliance or virtual machine.
For appliances that do meet the new specs, there is a three-step process to the software upgrade: backup existing data, install CNE, and restore the backup data. SpeechBridge CNE is a major upgrade, and can’t be upgraded in-place.
But Wait, There’s More! Also Announcing: SpeechBridge Core
Alongside this new release, we will be open-sourcing the core of SpeechBridge as a fully functioning, speech-enabled IVR platform that is free for anyone to download, build, and deploy. The software industry has been evolving rapidly of late, and it has become increasingly clear that open source is playing a significantly larger role in customers’ evaluation criteria than it had just five years ago. Even if an enterprise doesn’t directly consume open source software, it is undoubtedly included in the software stacks that they use every day.
Our mission at Incendonet has always been to bring advanced Communications Automation to enterprises of all sizes. By open sourcing a fully-functioning version of SpeechBridge, we will foster interest in clean and effective speech-driven applications, and provide partners with a larger source of revenue as they tailor new solutions for their customers.
|SpeechBridge Edition||Classic*||Cloud Native||Core*|
|Speech-recognition & Text-to-speech||✔||✔||✔|
|DTMF (phone keypad)||✔||✔||✔|
|VoiceXML, JS, .NET||✔||✔||✔|
|Web admin interface||✔||✔|
|Includes self-service apps||✔||✔|
|Latest speech rec & TTS||✔|
|More frequent updates||✔|
|Service provider friendly||✔|
* We’re not crazy in love with the “Classic” and “Core” naming, so we’re offering a free IncendoBot t-shirt if you send us a suggestion for a better name for either that we like more. Please contact us with your suggestions.
Can I upgrade my, or my customer’s, current SpeechBridge appliance?
Maybe. The SpeechBridge CNE platform requires a 64-bit CPU with a minimum of 2 GB RAM. If your current SpeechBridge does not meet these requirements, discounts on new appliances and virtual machines will be available. Please contact us for more details.
Can I stay on SpeechBridge “Classic”, or do I have to upgrade to CNE?
We will continue to maintain “Classic” for a TBD period of time, but it will not receive updates as frequently as CNE, and will eventually be end-of-lifed.
Can SpeechBridge CNE run in VMware vSphere? What about Microsoft Hyper-V?
Yes, and yes.
Can SpeechBridge CNE Run on VMware’s Photon OS?
We’re still evaluating demand for Photon, so it isn’t really on our roadmap yet. Please contact us if you are interested.
How will I get help for SpeechBridge Core?
In addition to the community features on GitHub, we will be offering paid support for SpeechBridge Core in reasonably priced blocks of hours, whether you need programming help, or just a hand getting started. More info coming soon as we finalize the rollout plan.
How is SpeechBridge Core different than UniMRCP?
UniMRCP lets you glue together some of the pieces of an IVR, SpeechBridge is a complete solution.
Can I take the SpeechBridge Core source code, modify it, and sell it?
Yes, as long as you open source your modifications. We would be much happier if you contributed your changes back in the form of pull requests, of course, so that everyone benefits.
Speaking of which, will you take pull requests?