- About StarPound
Chapter 1. Introduction
The StarPound PBX provides business phone services using a software-based solution over your broadband connection, rather than using traditional phones and telecommunications equipment. StarPound PBX gives you all the functionality of an expensive hardware PBX system at a fraction of the cost. The StarPound PBX includes:
- Multiple extensions
- A company directory with dial-by-name service
- Browser access to manage your voicemail and phone functions
- Configurable call forwarding options
- Flexible calendars for defining business hours and holidays
- Configurable voice menus (auto attendants)
StarPound PBX does not require any expensive hardware or software. All of the communications are handled through the StarPound PBX Server in the StarPound Technologies data center, which you access using your browser.
For you to use the StarPound PBX, your computer must have:
- A broadband connection to the internet (DSL recommended)
- A recent browser (Internet Explorer x.x, Firefox x.x)
- A softphone, such as the free X-Lite softphone from CounterPath Or
- A physical SIP desk phone such as one provided by Polycom or Grandstream
- Optionally, a headset for best results for audio when taking calls with the softphone
For information on using the StarPound PBX to make calls, manage voicemail, and manage user settings, see the StarPound PBX User Guide.
The following key terms are used in StarPound PBX menus and dialogs:
An extension is the number used to call a resource in the StarPound PBX. Extensions can be assigned to:
- StarPound PBX users
- Standalone phones (such as a phone in a conference room)
- Auto attendants
Since the StarPound PBX uses softphones and SIP desk phones, the term phone in the StarPound PBX refers specifically to either of these. A user may employ a softphone on the computer to manage his or her extension, and may never use a desk phone. Alternatively, you could choose to set up a phone that is configured to the user's extension. In some cases, you may set up a standalone phone with an extension that is not associated to a particular user, such as the phone in your lobby or conference room.
A phone number in the StarPound PBX is the ten digit number that can be dialed from any external phone to reach a resource in the StarPound PBX. In the telecom industry, this is referred to as a DID (Direct Inward Dialing) number.
A StarPound PBX calendar defines your company business hours for each day of the week and your closure schedule for holidays during the year. The calendar is used when setting up voice menus and call forwarding options.
A voice menu is a series of options and prompts that are played to the caller, such as "Press 1 to access the company directory…."
A StarPound PBX auto attendant presents voice menus to a caller based on the time of the incoming call and the defined calendar. An auto attendant can be configured to present one voice menu during business hours and a different one after hours. You can create multiple auto attendants and assign them to different extensions.
Custom Call Handler
By default, all incoming calls are handled using the same logic in StarPound PBX: calls are connected to the extension, and if unanswered they are sent to voicemail or call forwarding. A custom call handler overrides the default handling logic for incoming calls. They can be configured for:
- Your entire organization (the same custom call handler for all extensions)
- A user (all calls for the user)
- As a part of a user's call forwarding setup
Contact StarPound Technologies for more information on setting up custom call handlers.
Elements of the PBX
The following diagram illustrates the relationships between elements of the PBX: