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Greg Galitzine

February 2009

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Infonetics' Enterprise Telephony Report: Winners and Prognostications

February 26, 2009

I was on the road yesterday, a quick jaunt to Chicago for an interview with Tellabs. Rich blogged about it and posted a bunch of images from the trip, including one picture that so eloquently captured my thoughts on how busy O'Hare was.

 

The Tellabs facility is a beautiful. Modern, spacious, everything a corporate headquarters should be.

 

Watch for the interview with president and CEO Robert Pullen to be published soon in NGN magazine.

 

While I was winging my way back home, Infonetics Research announced its Q4 (2008) Enterprise Telephony report.

 

The headline of the release suns it up quite nicely: "Cisco takes lead in 2008 enterprise telephony market; Alcatel-Lucent, ShoreTel sole 4Q08 winners"

 

So amid the gloom:

 

·         The worldwide enterprise telephony market dropped 14% sequentially in 4Q08 to $2.3 billion, with vendor revenue down for all types of equipment including pure IP PBX, hybrid PBX, and TDM PBX

·         The main cause of the decline is the lack of new business creation and business expansion due to the difficult economic climate worldwide

 

There were some bright spots as well:

 

·         Year-over-year, the overall PBX market is up 1.1%, with the IP PBX segments up and the TDM segment down as the market continues switching over from TDM to IP equipment

·         Pure IP PBX revenue grew 25% worldwide in 2008, sustained by new product introductions

 

On the vendor front, the Infonetics report found that Alcatel-Lucent and ShoreTel -- alone among their competitors -- realized PBX equipment revenue gains in Q4, with Alcatel-Lucent's revenue up 13% sequentially and ShoreTel's revenue up 1%.

 

And despite a quarterly revenue loss, Cisco maintained the first spot in overall PBX/KTS revenue market share in 4Q08. According to the report, 2008 saw Cisco "grab the lead" for the entire year for the first time as well.

 

Matthias Machowinski, Directing Analyst, Enterprise Voice and Data, Infonetics Research had this to say:

 

Because of the significantly deteriorating worldwide economic conditions, we expect the overall enterprise telephony market to contract fairly significantly in 2009.

Siemens Announces Results of Communications Survey

February 24, 2009

Siemens Communications announced the results of a global survey conducted by SIS Research that uncovered the top five pain points in communication for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). The survey found that companies with 100 employees could be losing more than $5,000 per employee per year by not addressing common communication issues.   Among the key findings:   ·         68% of respondents have trouble coordinating communications among team members, affecting their ability to respond quickly to time-sensitive requests. ·         68% of respondents said they experience work delays while waiting for information from others. ·         77% of respondents receive unwanted communications that disrupt workflow and decrease productivity.       The complete text of the release as I received it follows:     Companies with 100 Employees Could Be Losing More Than $5,000 Per Employee Per Year by Not Addressing Inefficient Communication Issues   Communications barriers and latencies can cost small and medium businesses up to 40 percent of their productive time, according to a Siemens-sponsored global study     On average, 70 percent of employee respondents of small and medium businesses (SMBs) with up to 400 employees said they spend 17.5 hours each week addressing the pain points caused by communications barriers and latencies, according to a global study sponsored by Siemens Enterprise Communications and conducted by SIS International Research. The research also showed that while SMB awareness of unified communications as a solution is rising, nearly 60 percent of SMBs do not currently employ one based on the sampling.   In addition, researchers at SIS International Research determined that the time spent per week dealing with communications issues was more than 50 percent higher in companies with more than 20 workers. In hard costs, the study concluded, companies of 100 employees could be losing more than $500,000 each year by not addressing their employees' most painful communications issues.   Key Findings.

Rich on Freedom to Connect

February 24, 2009

Rich has a post about the upcoming Freedom to Connect conference being held in Washington, D.C. March 30 & 31, 2009.   There's even an offer for a discounted entry fee, but you'll have to read Rich's blog for that nugget.   Here's a marketing blurb on the show:   F2C 2009 will tell the story of: ·         on-line, network-enabled industry and culture, new jobs and sustainable growth ·         Burlington VT, where muni fiber enables business, artistic endeavor, and new telemedicine ·         how Lafayette LA's community came together as it built its muni fiber network ·         the twin cities of Cedar Falls and Waterloo, Iowa, where one twin has a muni net, and the other doesn't ·         how municipal CIOs are planning for Seattle, Portland and San Francisco municipal fiber networks ·         city nets, wired and wireless, that didn't work -- what went wrong and what that teaches ·         what Obama's infrastructure and economic recovery plans mean for tomorrow's network ·         and more ...  

VocalTec Announces Customer Wins

February 24, 2009

For those who have been around the VoIP industry for some time, the name VocalTec is synonymous with the industry's earliest days. VocalTec is a true VoIP pioneer and many even credit them for creating the first commercial products that put VoIP on the map. As with anything, origins are often debatable, but there is no denying that the company played a pivotal role in the first days of this industry.   Having gone through its own financial troubles, amid regional and more broad economic downturns through the years, in addition to the evolution from H.323 to SIP, VocalTec saw its star dim and went through a period of restructuring, but is slowly and steadily making its way back into the limelight of the IP communications space.   Just today the company announced that VMB, a carrier in St. Petersburg, Russia, has selected VocalTec solutions for its VoIP network rollout.   And, last week, VocalTec announced that Amatole Telecoms, a South African USAL (Under-Serviced Area License) service provider, had selected VocalTec's Essentra VoIP solutions in a VoIP deployment over Amatole Telecoms' WiMAX carrier-grade, converged IP network. 
  According to the announcement, VocalTec's Essentra solution will support Amatole Telecoms' requirement to provide customers with innovative residential and enterprise services, over a next-generation network architecture, enabling the provision of subscriber services at reduced cost, while enhancing service flexibility as well as the rapid deployment of value-adding services and applications.   It's good to see the name of a one-time high-flier back in the news, announcing customer wins no less.   The company will be releasing its fourth quarter and full year 2008 results on Monday, March 2, 2009 at 10:00am ET. Mr. Ido Gur, the President & CEO of VocalTec will lead the call, and management will review and discuss the results, and will be available to answer questions.   Details, including dial-in information of the call can be found here.   Looking back to VocalTec's last reported numbers, for the third quarter (2008) we see that revenues for were $1.4 million.

Sipera, RSA in Secure VoIP Deal

February 23, 2009

Sipera Systems says it's joined the RSA Secured Partner Program and RSA, The Security Division of EMC, said that it has certified interoperability between the Sipera IPCS UC security product family and the RSA SecurID two-factor authentication solution.   The result is a simple way for users to secure their VoIP phones without the need to use any special clients or phone configuration. All users need to do is enter the RSA SecurID one-time secure password and their PIN.   In an era where security and privacy compliance in industries such as healthcare, financial services and others is becoming critical, this solution helps an organization achieve its overall secure information goals.   Just today, TMCnet columnist Kevin Coleman published his most recent column, titled $1Trillion. In his note to me he wrote: "It's bigger than the bailout!" and when you stop to think about it, it's a scary thought.   The trillion that Coleman is referring to is not a US Government sponsored handout, it's the estimated dollar loss for intellectual property and data theft in 2008 for businesses globally. Coleman gets his numbers from Dennis C. Blair, the Director of National Intelligence, in his Annual Threat Assessment of the Intelligence Community for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. To learn more, read the entire article.

Is This the Beginning of Nortel Sell-off?

February 20, 2009

Radware is acquiring Nortel's Layer4-7 application delivery products, which were originally acquired by Nortel in 2000 by way of its purchase of Alteon.   It was not unexpected that Nortel would shed some assets as it strives to restructure itself while under bankruptcy protection. Radware, based in Israel, was earlier rumored to be interested in Nortel's Metro Ethernet products.   We'll see if this portends a bigger breakup of the once high-flying telecom gear maker.   Radware issued the following statement: (reprinted in full)   Radware (NASDAQ: RDWR), the leading provider of integrated application delivery solutions for business-smart networking, today announced that it has signed an asset purchase agreement with Nortel [TSX: NT, OTC: NRTLQ] to purchase certain assets related to Nortel's Layer 4-7 Application Delivery Business. Nortel added the application switch product line in October 2000 by way of its corporate acquisition of Alteon WebSystems, Inc.   "We believe acquiring Nortel's Application Delivery Business is a strategic move that will directly benefit Radware and Nortel's [Alteon] customers. Our ultimate goal is to provide them with a stronger, integrated product backed by world-class support and a globally-focused organization," stated Roy Zisapel, CEO, Radware.

Call Recording for Skype

February 20, 2009

is a hot topic these days, whether traditional TDM, or more frequently now, VoIP recording. There are many reasons to deploy a call recording solution, be it to improve your business' performance through monitoring and archiving important calls, to enhance training and employee development, or to comply with government mandates and regulations.Call recording   Today I received word of a new call recording solution designed specifically for Skype.   Developed by ExtraLabs Software, Skype Recorder is compatible with all versions of Windows (95, 98, Me, 2000, XP, NT, Vista) and supports all Skype versions.

    According to the company:   Skype Recorder can record Skype calls automatically.   ·         Skype Recorder has a range of efficient and advanced capabilities: ·         Manually start/stop/pause, or automatically record Skype calls ·         Convert your calls to MP3/OGG/WMA/WAV format ·         Built-in audio player, built-in FTP client ·         'Spy' mode   The software starts recording as soon as a users starts talking. At the end of the conversation, Skype Recorder encodes the recording to the specified format and saves the file on the user's hard drive.    Skype Recorder is available for a free 30-day trial period.    

Keener on Obama's Broadband Stimulus

February 19, 2009

Writing about President Obama's signing of the "American Recovery and Reinvestment Act," TMCnet columnist Barlow Keener does a good job parsing the bill for its broadband communications related passages, from who will be doling out the funds (NTIA, RUS) to what the requirements are for getting those funds (jobs creation, shovel readiness...), and so on.

  One thing I found interesting was the provision in the Bill for so-called "net neutrality obligations" contained in the legislation:   Grants provided must be subject to NTIA-determined "non-discrimination and network interconnection obligations" which "at a minimum" must follow the FCC's non-discrimination policy. Grants may be provided for a wide range of equipment and services including education of broadband subscribers.   It's an informative piece, one which I highly recommend.    

ITEXPO Call for Papers Extended to March 20, 2009

February 19, 2009

TMC has just announced that the Call for Papers for the October ITEXPO West has been extended to March 20, 2009. If you are interested in speaking at the event, please submit an abstract to callforpapers@tmcnet.com For details about this opportunity, including what information is being sought, please visit the official Call for Papers siteITEXPO West 2009 will take place in Los Angeles, California, at the LA Convention Center.

PowerSquid Surge 3000 Calamari Review

February 18, 2009

More often than not, there is a better way. Take that tangle of wires and bulky plugs under or behind your desk/computer workstation for example. Everybody knows what I mean. First of all even the most basic setup includes a PC/CPU, a monitor, a printer, a set of speakers...

Dittberner Data Shows Increase in Router Revenue

February 18, 2009

According to DITTBERNER's "Service Provider Switch and Router Market Analysis", overall carrier grade market router revenue posted a 21% annual increase for 2008, surpassing $11 B.

The top five router vendors in order were: Cisco, Juniper, Huawei, Alcatel-Lucent and Ericsson.   Here's what the report authors had to say:   Even with the expectation of a decline in fixed line broadband access shipments this year, Dittberner had originally expected a 30% increase in router revenue for 2008. This was because flat growth in new broadband subscribers would be offset by an increase in bandwidth per user due to the growth in video traffic. Router revenue came in at $11.3 B, a 21% annual increase, which was less than the forecast, but a healthy increase none-the-less.   Dittberner expects 10% revenue growth for CY 2009, based on forecasts of higher fixed broadband port shipments than in 2008, and a definite increase in bandwidth per user.

In-Stat: VoIP Market Slowing Down?

February 17, 2009

A somewhat deceiving headline made me sit up and take notice this morning. A news item from In-Stat, titled: Struggling Economy Will Slow the Growth of Voice over IP (VoIP) in US Business Markets drew my attention.   A closer look at the release, and it turns out things aren't all grim for the VoIP market after all.   According to David Lemelin, In-Stat analyst:   "IP continues to be a partial voice solution for most businesses with VoIP, particularly among larger businesses. Therefore, there is significant room for growth even among businesses that have already adopted it."   Recent research by In-Stat found that:   ·         32% of Enterprise size businesses say the economic situation has slowed their VoIP deployment plans. ·         Broadband IP Telephony remains the most common carrier-based business VoIP solution with revenues exceeding $1.1 billion in 2008, compared to $857 million for hosted IP Centrex service within the US. ·         Adoption varies significantly by size of business, with Enterprise businesses preferring a partial deployment, while SOHO businesses are more likely to go IP-only. ·         13% of US businesses use both carrier-based and premises-based IP solutions          In-Stat's report 2008 US Business VoIP Overview: Stick to Fundamentals covers the U.S. business market for VoIP.

Skype on Nokia N-Series

February 17, 2009

Skype and Nokia today announced today that Skype will be integrated into Nokia devices, with Nokia's N97 flagship device the first to incorporate the Skype experience by Q3 2009.

  Skype will be part of the address book of the Nokia N97, enabling presence - seeing when Skype contacts are online - as well as instant messaging. Nokia N97 owners will reportedly also be able to use 3G and WLAN to easily make and receive free Skype-to-Skype voice calls, in addition to low-cost Skype calls to landlines and mobile devices. 

Paving the Way for Voice over LTE

February 12, 2009

Great. Another acronym.   I guess in the world of tech that we inhabit, that's to be expected.   This one's not so bad provided it's pronounced volt and not volt-EE.   What am I talking about? I'll tell you.   Nokia Siemens Networks has reportedly come up with an approach for providing voice service over LTE networks that:   ...operators can implement with simple and cost-effective software and hardware upgrades* to their existing 3GPP circuit-switch core network. The "Fast Track VoLTE" approach provides a cost-efficient way to offer voice over LTE (VoLTE) in any mobile network architecture.   Note the asterisk.

Juniper, Nokia Siemens Networks in Carrier Ethernet Deal

February 12, 2009

The Carrier Ethernet space got a bit more competitive today with the announcement from Juniper Networks and Nokia Siemens Networks that they are teaming up to offer their carrier customers an end-to end Carrier Ethernet solution designed to "provide resilient access and aggregation for service providers worldwide." According to both parties, the joint effort will "bring the vision of a unified Carrier Ethernet solution supporting all services on a single network."  
 
The solution comprises Juniper's MX-series Ethernet Services Router, NSN's A-series Carrier Ethernet Switch and the ASPEN "single click" network management system. The companies hope to enable service providers to enhance their mobile backhaul, enterprise and residential services.   Juniper and NSN say the solution will be available in the second half of 2009.   Earlier this week, Alcatel-Lucent announced their own Carrier Ethernet solution in response to continued growing demand from the enterprise for more (and more affordable) bandwidth for richer services and applications over Carrier Ethernet, together with high levels of quality of service.   According to John Mazur, Ovum Principal Analyst for Switching and Routing:   The adoption of carrier Ethernet is accelerating, especially for mobile backhaul and enterprise access applications. Still, network and element management across systems manufactured by different vendors is a major concern for network operators.

Google Power Meter and the Next Great Conspiracy Theory

February 11, 2009

Ok, all you would-be Michael Crichtons, pay attention. 

Several weeks ago, Rich blogged about the apparent cozy relationship between Barack Obama and Google's CEO Eric Schmidt, who in many circles is considered to be among the favorites for the administration's CTO job.   Two weeks earlier (January 11th), The New York Times published an article titled California Seeks Thermostat Control, which described how the State of California would reserve for itself the "emergency power to control individual thermostats, sending temperatures up or down through a radio-controlled device that will be required in new or substantially modified houses and buildings to manage electricity shortages."   That seems a bit "Big Brother-ish" now, doesn't it?   On February 9th, Google announced a new initiative whereby it would help consumers track their home energy usage and thereby lower demand and the global warming emissions that come from producing electricity.   Dubbed Google PowerMeter, the new solution (which is currently in beta by Google employees only) would receive information from utility smart meters and energy management devices and provide that information regarding home electricity consumption right on a user's iGoogle homepage.   Ok, so this is about Google helping consumers save money in the Web 2.0 world right? And help green the nation while we're at it. Right? RIGHT?   "It may not sound like much, but if half of America's households cut their energy demand by 10 percent, it would be the equivalent of taking eight million cars off the road," Google said.   Now indulge my inner conspiracy theorist.   The software has a nifty "Sharing" feature, which would allow users to "strike up a little friendly competition to see how your energy consumption compares to your friends and neighbors."   Sharing personal power consumption information in a world where saving energy is the most patriotic thing you can do???   I'm not saying there's any conspiracy, but it's fun sometimes to play connect the dots and maybe supply budding novelists with alternative subplots for their adventure novels.

IP Phones Find a Home in Business, Not at Home

February 11, 2009

In-Stat is reporting that the business IP Phone market is thriving, and that by 2012, 31 million voice centric IP phones will ship into businesses.   And while IP phones are making some headway into the consumer space, In-Stat believes business IP phones will continue to outpace consumers by 10:1.   According to the report IP Phones Worldwide - On the Desk and Beyond, IP-based communication is enjoying much more vigorous adoption rate in enterprises than in the consumer space.   "Within the business market, corded IP phones remain the standard, and will continue to dominate the enterprise IP phone market through 2012," says Norm Bogen, In-Stat analyst. "However, WLAN and IP DECT phones continue to grow, especially within some specific vertical and geographical markets."  

Wireless Association Comments on Stimulus Plan

February 10, 2009

President Obama's economic stimulus plan passed its first hurdle today, clearing the Senate, en route to the House.   Among the many elements of the bill, there is nearly $7billion in available funding for the delivery of wireless broadband to rural areas.   Fred Campbell, the President of the Wireless Communications Association International issued the following statement:   "WCAI is pleased that the Senate stimulus bill includes $6.65 billion in grants for broadband deployment. As the only broadband platform that is capable of providing access everywhere, all the time, and at affordable prices, wireless broadband is essential to broadband connectivity, especially in rural areas.

In-Stat: WiMAX Market Strong, Yet Some Vendors Shrink from Opportunity

February 10, 2009

According to industry researcher In-Stat, "Broadband communications have become a crucial communications tool, so demand for mobile WiMAX technology remains strong."   But some vendors, especially those slow to migrate to the latest standards, might not be willing to wait around for that demand to translate into tangible sales.   "While the market for 802.16e will continue to grow, it does not mean happy days are here for every vendor," says Daryl Schoolar, In-Stat analyst. "In-Stat expects to see more infrastructure vendors pull back or leave the WiMAX market entirely. This is especially true for vendors that have been slow moving from 802.16d to the 802.16e standard."   According to the In-Stat research: ·         WiMAX base station revenues grew by 137.9% in 2008. ·         Global WiMAX subscriptions will be over 85 million by the end of 2013. ·         Deployments of 802.16e are contributing to the decline of sales in the fixed WiMAX standard, 802.16d.   Seems to me that this market opportunity is real and continues to evolve. With some vendors pulling out before the market matures, it appears that there will be more to go around for the remaining players that do hang in there.

ITEXPO Award Confusion

February 9, 2009

At ITEXPO, the editorial team was tasked with many assignments, but perhaps the most gratifying of all the items that appears on our collective "to-do" list is rewarding deserving companies with the best of show awards.   One particular award seems to have raised a bit of a "stink" in the blogosphere.   At the most recent ITEXPO, Interactive Intelligence was awarded a best of show award in the SMB category, which on the surface may seem like an odd thing to do, considering the company's Enterprise Interaction Center solution is geared to companies that employ at a minimum 100 people.   There is no question that the solution deserves praise and in fact Interactive Intelligence has received much acclaim for their products over the years.

See You in Los Angeles!

February 4, 2009

The show's over. And what a show it was!   The picture shows some activity still going on in the exhibit hall, an hour after the show officially closed.   As vendors try to break down their booths and go back to their usual routine, attendees are still trying to get as much information -- and possibly cut a deal or two -- before they get shooed out of the hall for good.

  The conferences, the exhibits, the keynotes... it was a great week in Miami.   Our next show is being held in Los Angeles at the LA Convention Center, October 27-29, 2009   For anyone interested in speaking opportunities we are still accepting submissions for INTERNET TELEPHONY Conference & EXPO West 2009.   See you in LA!  

ITEXPO Best of Show Winners (pre)Announced

February 3, 2009

Expect the official press release to hit the wires in the morning...


One of the most gratifying things I get to do as editorial director is work with my team of editors to select the most exciting emerging products and solutions.   At the ITEXPO events, that process culminates in selecting our Best of Show winners in various categories representing the breadth of exhibitors who are showing their wares at the show.   The following companies and their products were named ITEXPO East's "Best of Show" in the following categories:   Best Service Provider Solution: DalCom Telecom IntelePeer PhoenixSoft VoltDelta   Best Large Enterprise Solution: Aculab IndustryDynamics Phybridge   Best SMB Solution: Allworx Interactive Intelligence ITS Telecom Quanta Syspine   Best Consumer Offering: Grandstream Telefonica   Best Development Tool: Pronexus Sangoma Touchstone Technologies   Most Innovative Product: 8x8 Digium SIP Print Soundwin Network   Best Booth: Digium STS VoltDelta   Best Onsite Product Launch: Citel TelcoBridges TELES USA/New World Brands Xorcom   Best of Open Source: Contact Q/Braxtel Critical Links Freeside Internet Services Presence Technologies   Editors' Choice: Adtran Cbeyond NET Quintum   Congratulations to all the award winners! Stop by and see these and other innovative companies on Wednesdsay February 4th - the final day of ITEXPO - between 11:00-2:30.


ITEXPO Day Two: Recap

February 3, 2009

Day 2 came to a close on a high note! The Ontario Canada delegation hosted a terrific party/reception for the ITEXPO attendees and it was a huge hit. The reception was yet another great opportunity for networking, which has become a hallmark of this event.   Today saw the keynote presentations from John Frederiksen of Microsoft and Danny Windham of Digium as well as a service provider panel -- the room for both the panel and the keynotes was truly standing room only.   Today saw an Exhibit Hall that was full of quality attendees visiting with exhibitors and making deals on the show floor.   And today saw continued interest in the 4GWE conference and Digium|Asterisk World educational sessions as well.     Speaking of Digium and open source in general, one of the trends emerging at this show is that open source-based solutions are emerging as a great alternative for companies that are looking to a.) deploy advanced communications solutions and b.) save money while reaping the benefits if IP communications.   In addition to Asterisk creator and open source market leader Digium, 15 partners make up the Digium|Asterisk pavilion and all of these innovative companies are helping to drive this next-generation of communications solutions.   The Exhibit Hall ends tomorrow at 2:30pm and there will be a car giveaway just before the close of the Hall at 2:20pm. That's right...

Fanfare at ITEXPO

February 3, 2009

I had a pleasant meeting with Fanfare's vice president of marketing David Gehringer, who was in Miami this week topresent a session at ITEXPO.

 

An avid TMCnet blogger, Gehringer told me that his firm has been able to weather the ongoing macroeconomic storm by realizing a big swing in sales towards service providers. The company has traditionally been selling to network equipment manufacturers (NEMs) but has done very well as they have expanded their customer base to include carriers, picking up 6-7 new customers  in Q4 of last year.

 

They're still rolling out to NEMs, Gehringer said, but the trend is that more service providers and the size of the deployments at these carriers is growing.

ITEXPO Day Two: Early Sessions

February 3, 2009

Day 2 of ITEXPO has begun. I'm the keynote room listening to a fascinating Service Provider roundtable, together with several hundred of my conference-going colleagues. The panel consists of speakers from Broadvox, 8x8, inPhonex, Magic jack, Telefonica and tw telecom, and it's being moderated by industry blogger Andy Abramson. The panel is addressing the various issues that are affecting today's Service Providers, ranging from legal and regulatory to deployment challenges and financial regulations. I'm looking forward to the keynotes later this morning from Microsoft and Digium. 

Digium|Asterisk World Session

February 2, 2009

I sat in on one of the Digium |Asterisk sessions this afternoon, and it was a very informative discussion of Asterisk and its benefits for enterprises and contact centers.   The presenter, Matthew Nickash, who is simultaneously the Manager of Information Technology at insurance firm Richgels/Schaefer as well as an independent consultant addressed a number of issues including the software's scalability, issues of interoperability, and other issues.   He also touched on one of the significant new features of Asterisk that enables multiple systems to communicate with each other, peering transparently to allow for more simple management of multiple Asterisk-based systems. Nickash said that Asterisk allows system administrators to easily interconnect systems and maintain a friendly user interface even in organizations of up to 10,000 people.   This capability is also present in the new version of Switchvox SMB 4.0 that was announced earlier today.   One of the hallmarks of Asterisk is the community, and Nickash spoke of the community's ability to serve as a wide reaching support network help solve a user's implementation or usage issues, by providing a forum at Asterisk.org.   Of course the conversation touched on the cost savings and TCO (total cost of ownership) advantages proffered by Asterisk.   The session ended with a lively Q&A period, with a number of questions relating to contact center deployments and the benefits of using an Asterisk based system.

More Images from Miami

February 2, 2009

A few more pictures from ITEXPO/ Miami. We had a Super Bowl viewing party last night (see  more pics on Rich's blog here and here) - In the daytime, the ocean view was amazing, but as darkness fell the game took center stage.

The event kicks off today!

For a full listing of times and goings on, visit the ITEXPO Home page.


 

 



 

ITEXPO Sights

February 1, 2009






More on Broadband, Jobs, Stimulus

February 1, 2009

In case you followed the recent blog chatter about the proposed $40 billion that would go toward improving broadband availability and speeds as part of broader economic stimulus, here's some more information.   According to a Reuters article, Robert Crandall, a Brookings Institution economist said of a study he co-authored that the numbers that are being widely cited in newspaper reports are grossly overstated.   He is referring to a forecast that nearly 300,000 U.S. jobs would be created for every percentage point rise in high-speed Internet use   According to the Reuters report, Crandall said, "the Brookings Institution study, published in July 2007, is not particularly relevant now because of differing employment and related migration trends at the time of the study. Attempting to extrapolate it nationwide at this time is a "gross overstatement."   The article goes on to quote Chris King, an investment analyst at Stifel Nicolaus who believes that the section of the stimulus plan that call for targeting unserved rural areas would not really incentivize rural providers to invest.   Said King, "We believe the current plans are unlikely to stimulate private sector investment in unserved areas."   King is among a group of Wall Street analysts who maintain that tax credits for ultra-fast Internet speeds for underserved areas would likely only benefit Verizon Communications and perhaps some cable companies.

Digium|Asterisk World Set to Shine in Miami

February 1, 2009

Open source is really all the rage these days in IP Communications. In fact, a recent report from Eastern Management Group puts the Open Source PBX market share at 18% - not bad when you consider the incumbent companies and technologies that are being displaced.   Companies such as Digum, Fonality, Sangoma, and others are considered to be the leaders in the open source space, and all these companies will be in attendance at ITEXPO, which starts tomorrow.   In addition to educational seminars and training sessions on how to use, deploy, manage, etc... an open source PBX, one of the key open source attractions at the event will be Digium|Asterisk World.   The first ever Asterisk event focused purely on Asterisk for business, Digium|Asterisk World is "Everything Asterisk" for the business user, reseller, and executive decision maker.   The following partners will be exhibiting alongside Digium in the Digium|Asterisk World pavilion:   ·         AG Projects ·         Asteria Solutions Group ·         Camrivox ·         ContactQ (Braxtel Communications) ·         FreeSide ·         High Powered Help ·         Infradapt ·         Interlink Communication Systems ·         Net2phone ·         openLINE Networks ·         Orecx ·         Presence Technology ·         Transnexus ·         VoicePulse ·         Xorcom   Digium|Asterisk World promises to be one of the highlights of the overall ITEXPO event taking place at the Miami Beach Convention Center tomorrow through Wednesday.   For details on attending the show, check out the ITEXPO home page.   For an overview of the available open source related training sessions, check out Rich's blog on the subject.    

Early ITEXPO Shots

February 1, 2009

I'm in Miami with the team ahead of ITEXPO, and things are progressing beautifully. Preparations are being completed, and we're looking forward to the opening of the show tomorrow.

 
For those of you who have never been to a trade show before the official opening, I thought you might like to see what the exhibit hall looks like in the days leading up to the show.

 

Here's a couple of shots showing the work in progress.


 



 

It'll be a different story tomorrow at 5:45pm in the Miami Beach Convention Center when the crowds of exhibitors and attendees start their business of meeting and seeking out the latest IP communications solutions.

 

ITEXPO is in town through Wednesday February 4, so come on down to the Miami Beach Convention Center and be a part of the action.

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