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Podcast: Ken Lamneck - President The Americas, Tech Data

April 10, 2008

Ken Lamneck
President
The Americas
Tech Data









Distribution companies are in a great position to tell us what trends to look for in the market. What is hot? What is not and more. It is for this reason I was very interested in speaking with Ken Lamneck - President The Americas at Tech Data.

In our discussion we had a chance to embrace the concepts of virtualization, unified communications, NAS, how selling services is becoming a great business for VARs and more.

We also had a chance to discuss how VARs that do not provide complete solutions will lose business to others and will subsequently put their product sales in jeopardy.

Lamneck stresses that Tech Data wants to provide the best choices for their customers instead of pushing companies down a certain path.

There is much more but to hear it you have to listen to the podcast.




















Podcast: Dieter Thompson, TAG

April 10, 2008

Dieter Thompson
CEO TAG
I had a chance to have a podcast interview with Dieter Thompson the CEO of TAG, an Alcatel-Lucent company specializing in telecom procurement, contract negotiation and vendor management solutions.

Thompson shares many things in this interview -- one important point is that many local telecom services are going up in price. is the FCC to blame? Is there really enough competition? Dieter goes into these areas and discusses why carriers in some cases won't even bid on contracts.

is WiMAX the answer?





TMCnet Gets a Redesign

April 8, 2008

Sprint Pays Klausner

April 7, 2008

Sprint recently signed a deal with Klausner Technologies to enable them to use visual voicemail without the fear of being sued. This news is interesting as Sprint is one of the companies coming after VoIP providers who the company claims is infringing on their patents. It seems more than coincidental that Sprint decided to go after so many VoIP companies around the same time they were in negotiations with Klausner.

Sprint Nextel is the seventh company to date to license the Klausner visual voicemail patents. Other licensees include ISP’s such as Time Warner’s AOL, VoIP providers such as Vonage and the visual voicemail/voicemail transcription company, Simulscribe.

See also:





EU Authorizes Fist Fights on Planes

April 7, 2008

OK I may be a bit over the top with this headline but allowing a plane full of passengers the ability to talk on the phone -- all in different languages... What is the EU thinking?

According to TMCnet's Mae Kowalke, we will have the ability to talk in the air very, very soon. Sure, there are challenges like how will you deal with the fact that rows and rows of people will be talking at the same time while you are trying to nap?

The answer is unclear to me but riding on the trains in New York it seems like yelling at the telephone screamer seems to get them to quiet down a bit.

How do you invest to take advantage of such a change in policy.





Mossberg: 3G iPhone in 60 Days

April 6, 2008



Who am I to doubt Walt Mossberg the Wall Street Journal tech reviewer who gets his hands on gadgets before most others. According to Mossberg, we will have an iPhone capable of 3G speeds in less than 2 months.

This news would potentially confirm the wild rumors which have circulated as a result of these devices being sold out as of late.

This is great news for those who have been waiting for the iPhone to surf at speeds they can tolerate.

Of course one of the reasons this device didn't arrive sooner was due to battery life. One would imagine (and hope) faster and more consolidated processors will help this phone be similar in battery consumption to the model it replaces.

[Gizmodo]









Browser Wars

April 6, 2008



I recently downloaded and tested Apple's Safari browser on my Windows-based computer and wow is it fast. Frankly I was the last person I expected to switch to Safari, but I just did. Graphically speaking, it is the nicest browser on the market but it is far from perfect.

There is no Alexa toolbar for Safari yet and no Google toolbar (for the PC version). Still, the browser does have a Google search box located in the upper right hand corner.

What I like most about the Apple-based browser is the speed and the gorgeous design of the the browser software.





iTunes Tops Others

April 5, 2008

Save Money in a Slow Economy

March 31, 2008

What is one of the best ways to cut costs without cutting heads or disrupting you key business operations? One simple solution is to explore the adoption of a telecom expense management or TEM solutions.

Recently I had a chance to sit down with the team at Anchorpoint to learn just how they are helping companies cut costs in a painless fashion.

One of the biggest problems with how companies currently deal with phone bills is that they put highly skilled workers in charge of what is really a low skill job. In addition, the job of approving telecom bills is time sensitive as phones tend to stop working when bills aren't paid. So as these highly skilled workers deal with the time sensitive job which they often feel is below their skill set they tend not to take the job very seriously and subsequently rubber stamp bills to get them through.

So companies are paying good salaries to people to do a job which doesn't get done too well.

In my conversation at Anchorpoint's headquarters in Massachusetts, we discussed how in some cases companies deploying TEM solutions can cut headcount but this usually pales in comparison to saving perhaps 10 % or more on a 10 million dollar bill.

So instead of focusing on a company's ability to cut heads they explain that these high value workers could do more important things in the company.

Of course I brought up the $99 flat rate bill phenomenon being marketed by the wireless carriers and the team told me that the result of this new marketing approach is that companies now have a metric they must come below.

So a CFO may expect phone bills to be less than $99 and a compensation plan can even be assigned to a worker based on the percentage of savings over this amount.

We further went on to discuss how telecom cost management compares with travel management.















Here at CTIA in Vegas

March 31, 2008

So here I am in Vegas. I had a 45 minute wait for a cab followed by a 15 minute wait to check in to find out that the hotel I thought I was staying at is not the right hotel but instead I am next door. Check in time is 3:00 but rooms aren't ready so I am at the restaurant just waiting and waiting.

As I wait I am seated next to a table with 15 women.

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