Greg Galitzine : Greg Galitzine's VoIP Authority Blog
Greg Galitzine

April 2009

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Oh My! We're Doomed!

April 30, 2009

The Sunday Times of London has a story about the end of the Internet. Ok, maybe the Internet's not dying, but the report from the UK says that users will begin seeing rolling network slowdowns or "brownouts," which will cause their PCs to "freeze" as "capacity runs out in cyberspace." The culprits? No, not global warming, but rather the increased use of online video services like YouTube and the BBC's iPlayer. The Times reports that in a report, reportedly being prepared by the US's Nemertes Research, experts will claim that "...in 2012, PCs and laptops are likely to operate at a much reduced speed, rendering the Internet an 'unreliable toy.'"  

Recommended Reading: How Workarounds Drive Telecom & Networking

April 29, 2009

Fred Goldstien has a way of explaining the esoteric and confusing intricacies of telecom that helps readers make sense of the situation. And along the way he offers his insights to further help people understand.   He does it again in his most recent article, titled How Workarounds Drive Telecom and Networking.   Kicking off with the premise that "Pretty much everything in the Internet sector owes its existence to some foolish rule or another, either directly or indirectly," Goldstein goes on to enlighten us on the some history of the sector and how we got to where we are today.   I urge you to check out this article, and let me know what you think by posting a comment to my blog (see below).

TMCnet Blogger Family Grows

April 27, 2009

Today I'm proud to welcome our latest TMCnet blogger, Chuck Rutledge who will be sharing his insights and opinions via his new "Now Market It" blog.   I've known Chuck for over a decade, and he has always been a fantastic resource for articles I was working on and he was always ready to present compelling content at the ITEXPO conferences. Most recently Chuck served as the VP of Corporate Marketing at NET, a leading provider of VoIP equipment to enterprise, service providers and the government, where he joined via the acquisition of Quintum Technologies. Chuck had been VP of Marketing and Business Development with Quintum since the firm's early start-up days.   Today he is Managing Director at Precise Insights, a high tech marketing consulting company.   Please join me in welcoming Chuck to our family of TMCnet bloggers, a family that continues to grow with each passing week. In fact we are fast approaching the 50-contributor milestone on our blogs page.   If you are interested in reaching a diverse, highly technical, highly knowledgeable audience of up to 2 million people per month, drop me a line to ggalitzine (at) tmcnet.com and we can discuss setting up a blog for you too.

The Web: The Best is Yet to Come

April 23, 2009

If you think the Internet's a crowded place today, guess what? One of the Internets founders (insert Al Gore jokes here) Tim Berners-Lee, keynoting at the 18th Annual World Wide Web conference in Madrid this week, believes that the best of the Internet is yet to come.   "The Web as I envisaged it, we have not seen it yet. The future is still so much bigger than the past," he said.   The ITU report, Measuring the Information Society, The ICT Development Index, finds that only 23% of the global population currently uses the Internet, as compared to over 60% of the world's population that is currently subscribing to mobile cellular phone services.   An article on Breitbart quotes Internet co-founder Vinton Cerf who says, "We will have more Internet, larger numbers of users, more mobile access, more speed, more things online and more appliances we can control over the Internet."   I for one, think we all can agree that the future of the Web is mobile. As smartphones proliferate and becomes less expensive; as next-generation wireless networks bring Internet access into every far-flung corner of the globe; as more people are able to get access to more information, we will see the truly transformational power of the Internet facilitate a freer exchange of ideas, resulting in new advances in technology, society, etc...   Now if only we can do away with e-Mail spam...

Stock Blog Compares AT&T, Verizon

April 22, 2009

This morning, over at Seeking Alpha, there's a nice article from ValueExpectations (a stock blog and investment newsletter that provides institutional quality equity research) on the difference between AT&T and Verizon. ValueExpectations.com is run by the founders of The Applied Finance Group and Toreador Research and Trading.   To start, the article separates AT&T and Verizon from the third place U.S. wireless provider, Sprint.   Then, it compares the relative value proposition of both top wireless operators.   AT&T's market cap is $150 billion to Verizon's $90 billion.   AT&T is considered to have the better 3G network and a partnership with Apple to offer what is considered the hottest smartphone on the market, the iPhone. Verizon however has a "decent" 3G network, according to the article, and through its partnership with and support for several Blackberry models, is riding a positive trend.   Verizon's FiOS is considered the wave of the future, delivering "lightning-fast fiber optics" while AT&T's FTTN (fiber to the node) strategy is somewhat wanting.

Dialogic Announces Innovator Award Contest, Social Networking Site

April 21, 2009

Dialogic Corporation is inviting application developers worldwide to compete for the first-ever Dialogic Innovator Award by submitting their new, innovative applications built on Dialogiccomponents.   TMC's Rich Tehrani is among the judges who will decide who wins the inaugural Dialogic Innovator award.   Hand in hand with the new award program, Dialogic is also announcing the Dialogic Exchange Network (DEN), the company's new online social networking community.   Below is the official press release that hit the wires today. The release contains links to the application entry form as well as official terms and conditions.       Dialogic Corporation Launches Global Social Networking Community and Invites Application Developers to Compete for the Dialogic Innovator Award   Parsippany, NJ, April 21, 2009 - Dialogic Corporation ("Dialogic"), a global provider of world-class products and technologies for media and signal processing, is inviting application developers worldwide to compete for the first ever Dialogic Innovator Award by submitting their new, innovative applications built on Dialogic┬« components. In conjunction with this contest, Dialogic is also announcing the Dialogic Exchange Network (DEN), the company's new online social networking community. This global community has been created for customers, developers, employees and others who create communications solutions to be able to connect, share ideas, learn about industry trends and participate in forums covering a wide range of topics.

eBay Looks to Spin Off Skype

April 15, 2009

eBay has let it be known that they are looking to spin off Skype, the Internet phone company by way of public offering.   Nearly 4 years after it acquired Skype for $2.6 billion, eBay has come to terms with the fact that it might not have made the right call with the purchase.   I never did get the marriage of the two companies, but I guess at the time, a $3 billion risk was nothing to worry about.   I came across the following prediction (based on a JP Morgan analyst's note) on the Business Insider:   JPMorgan analyst Imran Khan estimates that Skype's 2010 net revenue could reach $740 million, with EBITDA of roughly $156 million. At a 10-20X EBITDA multiple, that suggests Skype could be worth $1.6 billion to $3.1 billion as a standalone company, Khan says.   $3.1 billion? I have to wonder if they'll ever get that much for Skype.   Still, the company does have a lot to offer. With over 400 million users, Skype is the world's leading Internet phone service, and they did just release a version of Skype for the iPhone and for Blackberry too.   They've picked Goldman Sachs to manage the IPO.   Rich offers his thoughts about the potential IPO of Skype.   I agree with Rich -- this should be an interesting IPO to watch.

Manhattan School of Music Teaches the World

April 14, 2009

Back in a previous life (GG:BTMC) I worked on Manhattan's Upper West Side managing a stationery store that was an outgrowth of a successful private bookstore serving the needs of the students at Columbia University, Barnard College, and Manhattan School of Music (MSM).   It was a fun period of my life and I was treated to a pleasant reminder of that time by a news item that came across my desk today, namely that MSM was leveraging distance learning powered by Polycom's HD Telepresence solutions to extend their classrooms to the world. 
  MSM has reportedly been using distance learning since 1996, allowing approximately 1,700 students around the world to participate in classes, workshops, and clinics to help them master their craft. Currently they are using the Polycom HDX 8000 and HDX 9000 series room telepresence and VSX 8000 series video conferencing systems to reach their audience.   As the technology evolved so too did the opportunity to reach more students, more effectively.   According to composer/conductor Robert Sirota, president of MSM, "Our use of visual communication has changed the way we do music instruction at this school in a very profound way."

"It's effective because it quickly becomes invisible," added Sirota. "After 10 or 15 minutes of using the system, you're less and less aware that you're engaged in a high-tech video call. You're simply working.


WSJ: Obama to Ease Cuba Restrictions

April 13, 2009

The Obama Administration announced it will ease restrictions on telecom companies to bid on licenses in Cuba, to set up mobile phone and television services, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal. Maybe I have these old-fashioned romatic ideas about doing the right thing, but I find it hard to stomach the decision by the administration to allow U.S. companies to do business with a Castro regime that still incarcerates hundreds of prisoners of conscience, and that continues to engage in human rights violations there.

Open Source on the Mac - 65k Projects and Counting

April 10, 2009

I came across an item today from MacForge touting the fact that the site now features over 65,000 open source projects for the Mac platform. MacForge is described as a resource that enables interested parties to find open source projects out on the net "that work on the Mac, or are likely to work on the Mac."   According to the release:   "In 2005, MacForge.net was created for not only the experienced open source user, but to introduce the Mac technical community to the wonderful array of projects available.   With the huge availability of open source out there, it can be difficult to find projects most relevant to the Mac. MacForge indexes open source projects that either have already been built for/tested on the Mac, or are likely to run on the Mac, without major porting work."   The site organizes the open source projects into a number of different categories, including Communications, Education, Games/Entertainment, Mobile, Multimedia, Office/Business, Scientific/Engineering, Security, Software Development and more. There's even a category listing for Religion and Philosophy, featuring nearly 20 projects dealing with new age spirituality.   Of interest to frequent TMCnet visitors, MacForge features thousands of open source projects dealing with communications, including Chat (2552), Conferencing (453), Fax (48), Internet Phone (179), Telephony (423) and more.      

Toddler's iPhone Obsession

April 10, 2009

Kara Swisher who writes for the Wall Street Journal's All Things Digital, has a very interesting video showing a toddler's iPhone obsession, and frankly it made me think of a bunch of people I know and how they sometimes let their gadget obsessions get the best of them.   Of course I love a cool tech toy as much as anyone, but I'm a bit of a laggard when it comes to laying my hands on the latest and greatest.
 
Sometimes I think I'm just on a different schedule, that's all. For example I can't wait to accessorize my aging (banged up, with a cracked screen) KRZR with a new handset accessory, like the one from Novophone (pictured).
  There is something comforting about that retro look.   Maybe then I'll consider the iPhone. I wonder if they'll reissue it in the classic Princess form factor... They do have a deal with AT&T, don't they?


Upcoming Webinars Designed to Save You $$$

April 7, 2009

I am privileged to work with a great team at TMC.   One of the things our team does exceptionally well is organize webinars, and I saw two upcoming events to which I wanted to draw your attention.   First on Thursday, April 23rd at 10am PT/1pm ET UTOPY is presenting a real-world case study that will highlight the successful deployment of their speech analytics solution with E-LOAN.   In fact, Michael Miller, VP Customer Care, E-LOAN will be presenting his real life experiences, so it's an opportunity to hear firsthand how that firm has seen a 41% improvement in sales conversion and a $2M increase in incremental revenue annually by deploying UTOPY's speech analytics solution.   Register now for this interactive and informative session!     And then on the 28th of April, Tuvox will be presenting a webinar titled 5 Ways To Stop The Flow Of Money Out Of Your Contact Center. In this economy, you just can't miss the chance to get this type of expert advice when it comes to saving money!   The webinar will take place on Tuesday, April 28th at 2:00p ET/11:00a PT, and there is no charge for this event.   For registration information, please visit http://www.tuvox.com/webcast9/   If you are responsible for customer service or customer care, you need to attend these events to see how you might be saving money.  

Attending HIMSS - Healthcare Meets IT

April 7, 2009

Just a quick note to say I'm in Chicago at the McCormick Center, attending the HIMSS conference, which covers IT in the Healthcare space.   I prearranged a bunch of meetings and I'll be jetting from booth to booth starting in about 15 minutes.   For those paying attention to all the nasty windy weather we've been experiencing (and flying in) I have to say today was a smoooooooth flight from the NY area out to O'Hare.   Let's hope tonight's flight back is the same.   Looking forward to my meetings, and I'll keep you updated as time allows.   In the meantime don't forget to stay up to speed on the latest healthcare and related news at our TMCnet Healthcare vertical site. If the intersection of healthcare and technology is your market - bookmark this site today!

Busy Week Inches to a Close

April 2, 2009

It's been quite a good week. The Dow is steadily rising (let's see what Friday brings: profit taking or Dow 8,000) and in less than 10 hours, it's wheels up for this Galitzine, heading home after a jam-packed week of IP communications at a couple of trade shows in Orlando and Las Vegas.   I've posted a few items already, covering some of the companies I met with and I have a few write-ups to go, but the bulk of the content will be coming to you in the form of videos posted to our TMC Newsroom. I can't remember such a busy schedule. I would say I met with well over 80 people this week, each with an interesting story to tell.   Truth be told the general feeling I walk away with after all these meetings is that innovation continues unabated, the economic malaise has to some degree spared a telecom sector that may have been prepared courtesy of the previous financial meltdown, and end users (you and me both) are growing ever more hungry for new apps - check that - new bandwidth hungry apps.   I'll be mostly out of pocket tomorrow as I'm flying back East across 3 time zones, but I look forward to hitting the ground running in short order.    

Nuance Mobile Care Enhances User Experience

April 2, 2009

  I'm at CTIA in Las Vegas today, where I just had a meeting with Nuance senior product manager David Winarsky, who shared his insights into Nuance's latest offering Nuance Mobile Care.   The solution gives end users the ability to self-solve simple problems including customer care and billing directly and instantly on their handset thus eliminating wait times for customer service agents, and allowing customers to help themselves.   Winarsky told me that this creates a large opportunity for service providers to reduce costs and provide a superior customer experience.   Deploying the Nuance Mobile Care solution has reportedly been shown to reduce calls being directed to live agents by over sixty percent. Winarsky cited a statistic that a miniscule shift of just 1% to automation can save large carriers $1 million per month.   He showed me a demo of the solution on a Nokia N-series phone, and walked me through the different options for account management, visual IVR, ease of navigation and the ability to display complex details on the handset.   Subscribers can choose which channel (speech, text...) is best for self service and they can always zero out to an operator   The application also does some diagnostics, helping users determine if there are problems with the device.   One interesting opportunity is that service providers can use this application to send consumers targeted advertisements, and fulfillment takes place right on the device, which is another incredible revenue opportunity for the operators.   The solution is currently deployed with T-Mobile in the U.S. (postpaid) and Metro PCS (prepaid); and with Vodafone in the UK (with a contract to expand to 18 other operators in Europe).   Looking ahead, Nuance plans to add personalization and by continue to enhance the user experience. And while they are addressing wireless carriers today, Winarsky tells me that there are plans in the works to target the enterprise market down the road.

Skype Party - Rich's Photos

April 2, 2009

Rich has some great photos from the Skype party we attended last night. Thanks to the Skype team and congrats on the new launch!

IBM Unveils Solutions and Partners Around Sametime Unified Telephony

April 1, 2009

IBM heralded the future of enterprise voice collaboration today with a series of announcements addressing new software, new services and an array of business partner offerings.   IBM Lotus Sametime Unified Telephony lies at the center of the company's UC strategy.   As more vendors look to IBM as a partner, IBM took the wraps off an interoperability validation program for the product. This program is designed for IBM and key business partners to test a product's capabilities with Sametime Unified Telephony.   Participants in the Sametime Unified Telephony Validation Program include, IP PBX service providers Alcatel Lucent, Avaya, Cisco, NEC, Nortel, Mitel and Siemens, media gateway vendors Dialogic and NET, and enhanced voice quality providers GN Netcom, Plantronics, Polycom and Psytechnics. Additional partners will be announced in the coming months.   IBM also announced the availability of IBM Converged Communications Services for Sametime Unified Telephony (SUT) a new service designed specifically to enable clients to readily reap the benefits of SUT. According to IBM, the service provides strategy, assessment, architecture, design, integration and implementation for the new solution.      
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