Today Amazon lowered their price for their EC2 services.
Is everything going to go to the cloud? Mitel, Avaya are certifying their products for virtualized servers. Trunks are going SIP. Does it make sense to put a phone system onsite any more?
Given the increasing role of both user mobility and teleworking, the fact that IP Telephony has become software-based, network-independent (wired,wireless), and endpoint-device independent, there is little reason to keep enterprise telephone systems hardware-oriented and premise-based. Throw in the fact that IP telephony is becoming a part of an "open" UC solution that must encompass the needs of individual end users both within and outside of an organization (business partners, customers), the different communication application servers should eventually all be part of the same interoperable "virtual" infrastructure.
So, what's the benefit of keeping things the same as in the past?
I am excited about the prospect of the open cloud and telephony. I currently run Asterisk on multiple instances at Amazon for R&D testing. With low CPU usage and networking usage (testing only) it costs me a couple bucks a day. I've modeled moving production systems to the cloud, but the costs and networking options are not quite there yet. I figure it won't be much longer though. If I could set up point to point circuits to EC2 and get a slightly lower price from Amazon, it would make sense. Can't be much longer. Hopefully MS Azure will force Amazon to lower prices. I think EC2 will generate more revenue for Amazon than its webstore does in just a few years.