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netriplex
netriplex's picture
Joined: 2012/01/24
Points: 80

Is there any updates on the next release of Thirdlane?

At the end of August it was indicated that it would be released this year. Is that still the plan? Is there any way to beta test?

We have basically abandoned Thirdlane for our clients use as it lacked too many things our clients required. Based on previous feedback, the latest major release is supposed to contain many of those needed improvements and I would be more than willing to put it through the paces.

matthewmalk248
matthewmalk248's picture
Joined: 2015/08/09
Points: 30

What previous feedback and what needed improvements? We've been moving our clients to Thirdlane because of the features that have already been released this year so I'm curious on what's missing?

eugene.voityuk
eugene.voityuk's picture
Joined: 2014/01/28
Points: 90

Hi there. We are on the finish line for the next release and are making final preparations. This release took a bit longer because we did a big "paradigm shift". We will publish a blog post with details for the upcoming release. There are a lot of changes to the whole platform as well as many new cool features for Thirdlane Connect. We will keep you posted.

netriplex
netriplex's picture
Joined: 2012/01/24
Points: 80

Matt,

The major one is the lack of support for hunt lists / queues within Thirdlane Connect for an extension. A user connected via thirdlane connect will only receive incoming calls that are placed directly to their extension. It won't "ring" if the user is in a hunt list or a part of the queue. 90% of our customers are small business where their office is setup with basically a "ring_all" hunt list for incoming calls. The connect client essentially was/is completely useless in these situations for anything but outbound calling.

Additionally, for the few users that didn't need hunt list support, if you run a secure pbx system with TLS and SRTP, switching from desk phone mode to Connect and back did not work right. It would lose the proper desk phone settings, so when you switched back to desk phone mode, the phone wouldn't register without reconfiguring it. If you were ok with providing a phone service with unencrypted calling using udp and clear audio streams, this didn't affect you.

Those were the factors that contributed to needing to migrate.

Less important but still relevant was the lack of published Call Center pricing for the other end of the spectrum type of customers. The pricing is not publicly known which makes planning difficult. Further, their pricing model for call center features does not match up to small business needs which is where most customers looking for a multi-tenant shared hosted platform are going to come from. 3CX offers basically unlimited everything including call center functionality as it is strictly priced based on simultaneous calls. It was more profitable to sell dedicated virtual 3CX servers than pay unknown/unexpected costs when our 5th customer wanted a few call center seats and it was adding $5 per month to our licensing costs (when amortized). It is cheaper for us to spin up a VM with the push of 3 buttons with 3CX.

Finally, as others have posted as well, I have always felt that if you are going to offer a multi-tenant product designed for the SaaS industry it needs to be white labeled at a minimum. You sell a product as your hosted pbx service and then your customers see Thirdlane all over it. While 3CX doesn't have multi-tenant at all (which I also think is shortsighted) at least what you sell matches what the customer is getting. Instead of a hosted pbx service, they are getting a managed virtual server with 3CX. With their 4 simultaneous calls license being free, most of the servers incur zero licensing costs for us. For the ones that need call center functionality, it adds about $15 per month (and as an "addon" this stays virtual flat, it you have 200 agents, it only costs $600 more per year, TL wants like $4k), but their call center functionality is leaps and bounds more expansive than Thirdlane especially from their apps standpoint (better reporting, wallboard, receptionist view that shows call status of all extensions, queue callback functionality, etc).

I continue to support Thirdlane and wish nothing but the best for it, as I MUCH prefer offering a SaaS offering as opposed to managed virtual servers (for this type of thing), but the TL9 release came up way too short compared to the competitor and we had to look out for our own interests and profitability. I have repeatedly and continue to push for these features and corrections because I sincerely believe Thirdlane is the best "base" platform out there and with the proper tweaks, it would be leaps and bounds ahead of anything else.

chrisc@accentse...
chrisc@accentservices.com's picture
Joined: 2018/05/07
Points: 0

Great to hear that Eugene. Is there a date set for the release or an estimate you can provide?

thirdlane
thirdlane's picture
Joined: 2007/02/07
Points: 380

Our goal is the coming weekend

Alex Epshteyn
Third Lane Technologies
Multi Tenant Asterisk PBX

netriplex
netriplex's picture
Joined: 2012/01/24
Points: 80

I would greatly suggest/request that when Thirdlane pushes out this release, if the Thirdlane Connect client on mobile is not backwards compatible with V9 server that Thirdlane pushes it out as a NEW app to the respective mobile stores. I am unsure how other companies handles roll-outs and new releases, but we NEVER push anything into production without first testing a release on staging servers. When TL upgraded connect (forgot exactly which release but pretty sure it was when things went from 8 to 9) last time with breaking changes, all mobile devices auto updated to the latest TL Connect release while we were still testing the release server side and all Thirdlane Connect mobile clients broke.

This will not directly impact us this time as we are off Thirdlane (but we are hoping to move back), but I'm sure that this will benefit the entire Thirdlane customer base.

chrisc@accentse...
chrisc@accentservices.com's picture
Joined: 2018/05/07
Points: 0

I would agree that Connect should be backward compatible. Many users update apps automatically or blindly update without asking any questions.

I wouldn't want this to delay the release but it is something which would greatly benefit the user experience and make the upgrade process much smoother.

netriplex
netriplex's picture
Joined: 2012/01/24
Points: 80

Is this latest release still based on CentOS 6?