This year I decided to head down to Orlando and catch the Enterprise Connect show. Usually, the VoIP shows I attend deal with open source products and target Developers (as well as users, purchasers, etc). Enterprise Connect mostly highlights non-open source telephony offerings from such companies as Cisco, Slack, Microsoft, Avaya, etc.

After a few days here in beautiful Orlando, I still am not sure who Enterprise Connect had in mind for a target audience. Did they want those with technical skills? Not sure– none of the talks really went into anything technical. Decision makers? Influencers? No idea. 

“The cloud” and “API” clearly won the buzzword competition — which made me wonder… Are these products really that far behind open source software?

APIs have been strongly touted for years in the open source VoIP community. Asterisk launched ARI more than 5 years ago. FreeSWITCH had APIs from the start. Kamailio could process HTTP since at least 2010.

Although disappointed in the state of proprietary VoIP, the lack of technical presentations, and the incredibly low ratio of female attendees, I did enjoy seeing friends within the community.

I hadn’t seen Dave Michels in person since Astricon 2007 and seeing him at Enterprise Connect brought a huge smile to my face.

Seeing some of the supporters of open source VoIP (such as Obihai Polycom, Twilio, 2600Hz, Voxbone, and more) was a highlight and of course there were announcements here and there (such as Twilio’s new flex call center).

Will I come again? I’m sure I will… it’s too close to Gainesville not to. Maybe even replacing some of the inferior baked goods with Bearkery products and Kamailio cookies.