TMC Labs Review: Yeastar P-Series PBX System (Cloud Edition)

By Erik Linask, Group Editorial Director  |  June 16, 2022

As with the computing industry, communications has been through a revolution. Perhaps one of the more seminal events for the space has been the emergence of the cloud. UCaaS has been central to this revolution and it has enabled companies to centralize and simplify their communications infrastructure while enhancing the way people communicate with each other.

Perhaps most importantly, UCaaS allows companies to pay-as-you-go, as opposed to purchasing equipment up front.

Since 2006, Yeastar has been one of the most recognizable companies in the unified communications field with an array of products and services. Yeastar especially shines in the small to medium enterprise space, with a considerable installed base of PBXs and other communications products. The company has over 250 employees and over 350,000 customers. The three versions of phone system solutions they offer are the Cloud Edition, Software Edition and Appliance Edition.

The Yeastar P-Series PBX (News - Alert) System Cloud Edition is their state-of-the-art hosted solution, which TMC Labs reviewed.

Features

The Cloud PBX is the next step in Yeastar’s communications advancement. Today, most small businesses have an MSP that manages their communications needs. The MSP might ship a phone system to the client office and then deploy it with various endpoint devices, such as IP and soft phones. The MSP also provides SIP trunking from one or more SIP providers, a session border controller and networking infrastructure.

Yeastar P-Series PBX System Cloud Edition has made that process much easier for the MSP. Instead of deploying the PBX in clients’ offices, the PBX can now be deployed in the cloud. SIP trunking, session border controllers, management and support can all be done remotely by the MSP.

Yeastar’s cloud PBX infrastructure is built on top of AWS. That means having options to deploy the PBXs in a variety of regions, ability to dynamically adjust the PBXs’ capacity, with desired degrees of high availability and fault tolerance, with more improved cost management than physical PBXs.

Yeastar regional data center locations

What can make this even more attractive to MSPs is the management system called Yeastar Central Management (YCM). The MSP simply logs into YCM on a browser and manages all of its clients from one central portal. YCM can be used to add clients, deploy PBXs for them, and manage those PBXs for the clients or even allow customers to manage their PBXs themselves.

YCM dashboard

YCM also comes with an API library, allowing MSPs to interface with YCM in a manner of their own choosing rather than just the YCM web pages. The value here is customization, which adds numerous advantages to the MSP. By integrating APIs into a complete solution, an MSP can add significant value to the client via digital transformation. In addition, they now have a stickier solution, meaning the MSP is not as easy to discard if a competitor comes in with service that costs five percent less.

For our test, we logged into YCM to create a cloud PBX. Once deployed, we managed the cloud PBX over the web, just like remotely managing a physical PBX in an office.


 

Cloud PBX deployment
Cloud PBX web interface

Once provisioned, the cloud PBX is managed just like a regular PBX appliance. We could add SIP trunks, which can be obtained from various providers. Auto Provisioning would allow the PBX to scan the network and add various IP phones to the PBX, or we could manually add extensions, as we did with a Yeastar Linkus UC Clients.


 

Configuring SIP trunk
Auto Provisioning

The cloud PBX also comes with network security and firewalling features and can integrate with various online services, such as CRM products from Salesforce and Zoho (News - Alert). Better still, it integrates with Microsoft Teams to make enterprise-grade calling capabilities available to Teams users.


 

Cloud PBX integrations

Another benefit of working with Yeastar is their scalability, enabled by their SBC and PBXHub Cluster architecture.


 

Yeastar SBC and PBXHub Cluster architecture

In addition, Yeastar’s P-Series works with a number of endpoints, including Yeastar’s softphones, as well as devices from Yealink (News - Alert), Fanvil, Cisco, SNOM, Poly, Grandstream and others. SIP trunking partners include SIP.US – which we used for this review – as well as Twilio, Bandwidth (News - Alert), Flowroute (recently sold to BCM One by Intrado), Net2phone and others.

Many of the leading communications solutions on the market have contact center modules/functionality and Yeastar is no exception. They provide an ACD and advanced queue reports – some of the table stakes of contact center solutions.

A wide range of client support

In order to communicate with the Yeastar P-Series PBX System Cloud Edition, we used the company’s Linkus Web Client, a web-based solution that can be launched from any browser (Google Chrome, Microsoft (News - Alert) Edge, Opera, etc.). It combines all the features you need to communicate, collaborate, and connect with colleagues and customers – inbound/outbound calling features, presence, messaging, etc. Yeastar also offers mobile (iOS and Android) and a desktop version of its Linkus UC Clients, allowing users to truly take their office communications services anywhere, regardless of device or location and without losing any features, including integration with other business applications. For Chrome users, there is also a Chrome extension for even simpler access to the UC platform.


 

Yeastar Linkus Web Client
Yeastar’s Linkus mobile client

While there are many ways to text chat with colleagues, perhaps the solution tied into your UCaaS solution makes the most sense. In fact, Linkus allows for individual and group chat as well as file sharing.

Video Collaboration included

While not a replacement for Zoom, the Linkus client also includes full HD video collaboration, including screen share and in-video chat. Up to 5 users can participate on each video conference, and businesses can have up to 4 simultaneous video sessions.  Each video collaboration session has a 2-hour time limit and can be scheduled, or initiated ad hoc. For many organizations, these capabilities are more than enough to ensure they are able to collaborate effectively, and they may even be able to save by not having to purchase a separate subscription-based collaboration solution, while enjoying the benefits or video integrated into their UCaaS solutions. Users can even switch between voice during a call. In order to access video conferencing features, be sure you have the Ultimate Plan and either the Yeastar SMTP Server or a custom email server set up on the PBX server.

White Label Option

Recognizing that brand identity is a valuable asset for service providers, Yeastar also offers turnkey white label UCaaS option.  Providers are able to offer the same feature-rich Yeastar P-Series PBX System (Cloud Edition) under their own branding, increasing customer loyalty and market awareness, while delivering the latest UCaaS features to end customers. The white label program also includes Yeastar’s comprehensive onboarding and training, as well as back-end and sales support, ensuring service providers are well-positioned to sell their white-labeled UCaaS service from Yeastar.

Yeastar's White Label Platform



Conclusion

Yeastar P-Series PBX System Cloud Edition was made for MSPs who not only want to serve their customers better but also make their own lives easier. With just a few steps, the reseller can quickly spin up a multitude of PBXs for their clients, wire up all the endpoint telephony devices and deploy the platform with ease.

The cloud-hosted PBXs are reliable and resilient, with adjustable capacity, high availability, fault tolerance, and redundancy to any desired level.

Moreover, all clients and their platforms can be easily managed using one central web portal, Yeastar Central Management, YCM.

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Edited by Erik Linask