CSIPSimple

CSIPSimple

CSIP Simple is a free SIP client for the Android OS. In its current build, the application does not support business features like blind or attended transfer. If you need these features, then I suggest purchasing and downloading Bria for Android.

If, on the other hand, you cannot remember the last time you used your transfer button on your cell phone, then CSIP Simple might be just the SIP client for you.

Phone Configuration

Registering your OnSIP account with CSIP Simple is incredibly easy. Go to your accounts menu by clicking the standard Android ‘menu’ button and selecting ‘Accounts’ (if the application doesn’t already take you to this menu at startup). Select ‘Add account’. The application will ask you to choose a wizard. You should see ‘OnSIP’ either at or near the top of this list. Select it. You will be asked to enter your SIP username, Auth username, SIP password, and Domain.

Login into your OnSIP admin portal to find your SIP credentials. You can find this information in the user detail pages under the Users tab in the Phone Configuration section.

Enter in the values as follows:

  • Account name > Your choice, default is ‘OnSIP’
  • SIP Username > Username
  • Auth Username > Auth Username
  • SIP Password > SIP Password (You can select ‘show password’ to make sure you’re entering it in correctly)
  • Domain > Proxy/Domain

Hit the save button and you’re all set. The application already has all of the other OnSIP presets saved to guarantee the best experience.

If you want to take a peek at some of these settings, simply hit the Android menu button and select ‘Settings’. In ‘Easy Configuration’, you can decide if you want CSIP Simple to integrate with your native dialer and call logs, and decide how you want to use the app (always on, only for outgoing calls, etc). ‘Network’ and ‘Media’ settings should already be optimized for OnSIP SIP accounts if you used the setup wizard. In ‘User Interface’, you can manage your native dialer integration, and change your general user interface. The ‘Calls options’ menu allows you to toggle call recording, and set your outbound caller ID.

JN Testing

At Junction Networks, we put each of the phones we use through a multi-step interoperability test in which we apply ~30 test cases. An example of a test case would be the following:

Test phone calls phone B

B picks up

B puts Test phone on hold

B calls phone C

C picks up

B transfers test phone to C

Call must be transferred correctly to C. B must be released correctly after the transfer. When C picks up, audio must work in both ways between test phone and C. When test phone is on hold, there is no audio between it and phone B.

CSIP Simple passed all relevant tests. As we mentioned at the beginning of this write-up, this client does not do transfers so many of our test cases were not applicable. If you need a SIP client with full business functionality (blind & attended transfer, support for simultaneous calls, conferencing, etc), we recommend Bria for Android.

Voice Quality

Calls using CSIP Simple sound very good. If you are on Wifi and the person you are talking to is using an HD device / software, the voice quality is superb. G.722 16 kHz is automatically set highest on your priority list of audio codecs if you register this SIP client using the OnSIP setup wizard.

Call quality over 3G / 4G depends on the strength of your network connection. We did not experience much degradation in voice quality, but the experience can vary from place to place.

Ease of Use

One of the great things about the application is how well it integrates with your native dialer. You can make calls using your SIP provider without having to go out of your way. When you hit the dial button in your native dialing application, a menu will pop up asking you whether you want to complete the call using the your native dialer or CSIP Simple. Once you select CSIP simple, choose the account you want to use and the call will be made using that account. It’s incredibly convenient; for example, I can enter my coworkers’ extensions in the native dialer and be two button taps away from reaching them with the SIP account I use for business.

There are also reasons to open up the application.

The UI of the SIP client is a lot like your native dialer with a few differences. You have 4 tabs: the dialer, call history, messages, and contacts. The dialer looks just as you would expect. To the left of your ‘send call’ button is a button that looks like a mini-numpad. Tapping on this button will let you make calls to SIP addresses. The application automatically appends the domain of your SIP account to the address in the input field if you only enter the ‘username’ (SIP addresses take the form username@domain.com, e.g joe@acme.com).

This makes things extra convenient for calling people within your network. Here’s an example. The domain I use for work is junctionnetworks.com. Sometimes I forget my coworkers’ extensions but I’m not so forgetful that I forget their names. Say I’m trying to reach Bob—I can simply type in ‘Bob’ (instead of Bob@junctionnetworks.com) and hit 'dial' to call him.

The call history tab looks like any other call history menu you’ve seen. You can choose in your settings to integrate this with the call history menu of your native dialer.

You can use the messages tab to send IMs to other SIP users using SIMPLE. We tested CSIP Simple to CSIP Simple, CSIP Simple to Jitsi, CSIP Simple to Bria, CSIP Simple to the Grandstream GXV3175 and this feature worked in all cases, more or less.

The final menu is your call contacts menu, which holds no surprises.

Closing Thoughts

CSIP Simple is a great SIP client for Android for making and receiving calls. There currently isn’t much support for much else beyond that, but this may change in the future.

First Published May 5th, 2011