POTS or PRI - customized IVR PBX

I am in the midst of using Asterisk to create a customized IVR to facilitate in a survey. Brief on what my system will do.

  1. There will be a hotline for 10-15 concurrent incoming callers to dial into the box
  2. Each caller will be prompted with multiple IVR menus with survey questions.
  3. Utilizing the DTMF tones, the box will record the caller’s answers to each question prompted in a mySQL DB.
  4. I do not require any outgoing connection, at most, a default extension to a soft phone to speak to an operator.

I am very new to Asterisk and have installed my box with the latest version of TrixBox. Finally got it to run on 3 of my SIP phones and have configured every incoming call to be automatically directed to the customized IVR. It works perfectly fine on my soft phones dialling to “7777”. Got the IVR to work fine.
Hence, I have got myself a X100P card and managed to get it to work with my POTS line. However, my problems are below. Have done a lot of searching on the web but would like to seek advice on my following questions:

  1. Only one POTS call can be connected to the IVR at one time. Concurrent incoming calls to the ZAP channel is automatically directed to voice mail. This could mean that the line was actually terminated in the box but how could I direct all these calls into the customized IVR instead of the voice mail?

  2. Do I really need a PRI line and card for my case as I only require multiple incoming calls to IVR and does not require any outgoing line?

  3. As multiple “hunting” lines can be created on a single POTS line with my operator here, can I still detect the Caller’s number and session for each of these incoming call? This is because I noticed that subsequent incoming calls does not get recorded in the Asterisk CLI verbose modes. I will need their phone number and session so my app can respond in ending these calls when needed. On the SIP phones, I have used "soft hangup ".

Hope anyone out there can advice me here. Thanks so much in advance!

You only have one analog port with your x100 so you can only have one call at a time. You need one analog line or one digital channel per simultaneous call you wish to have. In your case you have at least 3 choices.

1 - get a pair of 8 port FXO analog cards (Digium AEX800 or TDM800) to get up to 16 similutaneous calls

2 - get a single 24 port analog card (Digium AEX2400 or TDM2400) to get up to 24 simultaneous calls

3 - get a single 1 port digital card (Digium TE120 or TE121) and a T1\E1 line to support up to 24\30 simultaneous calls

With the first two choices you can get whatever number of ports you need, for the T1 you can get a partial T1 or a full T1

Depending on your location the break even cost for analg to digital lines is between 8 and 15, and the break even point for partial or full T1\E1 is 12-18 channels. For example I can get 8 analog lines for the same cost as a 8 channel partial T1. For the same cost as a 12 channel partial T1 I can get a full T1 (which would cost the same as about 10 analog lines).

Thanks so much for the explanation and recommendation. I just needed the assurance and recommendations before deciding to commit to a PRI line as it would cost me a lot.

Cheers. :smile: