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Rich Tehrani
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Level 3 Communications

August 20, 2007

Level 3 Communications, Inc., an international communications company, operates one of the largest Internet backbones in the world, connecting 180 markets in 18 countries. The company serves a broad range of wholesale, enterprise and content customers with a comprehensive suite of services including: Internet Protocol (IP) services, broadband transport and infrastructure services, co-location services, voice and voice over IP services, content delivery and media distribution services.   Recently the company announced that it has been selected by Joost to support its Internet television service, providing Joost with network solutions including high-speed Internet access and co-location services in North America and Europe.   I had the chance to catch up with Cary Tengler, Level 3’s director of partner development who told me about the company’s latest initiatives and a bold prediction for where the industry will be in five years.

Tissot High-T Discontinued

August 20, 2007

Sadly, the Tissot High-T has been discontinued. This is terrible news as when the watch worked, it worked very well. It connected with the Microsoft Spot network which is now called MSN Direct. It had a touch screen and vibrate function which made it an exceptional watch as it could remind you of appointments without any sound.

IP Communications Education

August 20, 2007

Listen, I don’t want to overdo discussion of ITEXPO in my blog but the fact of the matter is this recent e-mail sent by my marketing team is a great document discussing what is important at the show. It is a good guide for you. What to see, where to go, where to be, etc.   You can see below the various aspects of Internet Telephony Conference & Expo which make it unique and the most imitated event in IP communications.

Call Center CRM Stories August, 17 2007

August 19, 2007

While technology has a bewildering effect on the medical industry it seems one of the areas ripest for improvement and change is that of the interaction of patient and doctor. A recent article on TMCnet details how HD videoconferencing is improving patient care.   Another area of change in contact centers is that of outsourcing. A recent article from TMCnet’s Susan Campbell talks about this change. Specifically it discusses a new study by Duke University and the management consulting firm, Booz Allen Hamilton which found that companies are increasingly moving sophisticated, mission-critical functions to China, India and other offshore locations primarily because these countries are providing the individuals with the necessary skills and education.   Speaking of changes in outsourcing, did you know Egypt is trying to be a major player in this space according to an article from TMCnet’s Brian Solomon?

Telrex

August 15, 2007

I recently got the chance to sit down with Bob Cordes, Vice President of Product Management for Telrex. We discussed his company’s business strategy, as well as the future of the IP telephony market in general.   Telrex is a leading provider of IP call recording and contact center optimization solutions. Their CallRex platform provides easy and affordable software solutions for companies of all sizes to protect, grow and optimize their business.

3CX

August 15, 2007

I recently had the opportunity to ask 3CX CEO Nick Galea about the evolution of the IP communicationsspace and the direction his company is taking.   3CX is well known for its SIP-based 3CX Phone System for Windows, a software-based IP PBX that replaces a traditional proprietary hardware PBX/PABX.   To learn more about the company, read this TMCnet article from earlier this year.   Please outline your new corporate initiatives.   We have launched version 3.1 of our phone system recently, which is a complete software based small business phone system running on Windows. Our main drive for Q4 of this year is the release of version 4, which will include a SIP VOIP client and have many innovations.   How is IP communications changing your company's strategy?   Our company is based on the future potential on IP Communications, so it’s pretty fundamental to our company strategy.   What pains does your company solve for customers?   The pain of the traditional proprietary phone system shackle. It is expensive, difficult to manage and entirely outdated. We remove that shackle-bind by liberating the PBX from the proprietary hardware.

Telecom Cost Management

August 15, 2007

One of the fastest areas of growth in communications – and there seem to be so many these days, is telecom cost management. In recognition of this fact, TMC has launched a Telecom Cost Management channel which is being sponsored by Optelcon.   Why is telecom cost management an important area? PSTN calls, VoIP calls, FMC, wireless calls, broadband communications, etc have made it challenging to understand phone bills, let alone manage the cost of them.   What sorts of articles might we see on this micro-community? Boy am I glad you asked.   Here is a list of some of the latest content on the site:  

Aperio CI Interview

August 15, 2007

I recently had the opportunity to speak with William Mich, chairman and chief executive officer of Aperio CI, and get his thoughts on where the market and his company is headed.   As you may recall, the company has a unique way of generating more revenue for service providers and moreover can reduce churn while increasing ARPU. To get some history on the company, be sure to read this article I wrote last year about how Aperio CI can help service providers generate more revenue.   ----   Please outline your new corporate initiatives.   Aperio CI is focusing on helping service providers better understand the propensities and behaviors of their customers, which ultimately will enable them to deliver more targeted and compelling offers that result in longer customer lifecycles, enhanced brand loyalty and greater profitability.   How is IP communications changing your company’s strategy?   IP communications gives providers many more options in terms of delivering value-added content. As a result, our company has become more refined in mapping customer attributes to help providers deliver the right offer to the right customer at the right time.   What is the biggest request coming from your customer base?   Finding solutions to reduce churn and build brand loyalty.   How are you answering their demands?   We have developed a comprehensive suite of technologies to help customers understand the attributes of both desirable and less than desirable customers, and customize offers that will motivate good customers to stay with the brand.   What do you think the future of the market is?   We are extremely optimistic that providers will pay equal -- if not more -- attention to retention. Savvy providers understand that keeping good customers is much more profitable and operationally sound than having to acquire a significant base each year.   How does the US growth rate in the U.S.

Smoothstone

August 15, 2007

I recently had the opportunity to ask Jeff Wellemeyer, chairman and CTO of Smoothstone, about the most recent call center solutions and the path Smoothstone is taking to create greater customer satisfaction.   Smoothstone is an IP communications provider that designs, integrates and services specifically tailored solutions including VoIP for medium-sized enterprises. The company’s IP communications platform provides next generation, centrally managed and enterprise strength solutions over a private nationwide network.   Please read more coverage of Smoothstone in TMCnet.   Please outline your new corporate initiatives.   Smoothstone continues to add new clients and to introduce new services. The most recent initiative is the introduction of our new Smoothstone Intelligent Call Control (ICC) platform.

TMCnet New Traffic Record

August 15, 2007

Thanks to all our readers and visitors who have allowed TMCnet to achieve a new traffic record in July 2007.   Here are the numbers:   Page Views 30,977,147 Average Visit Length 35:45 Unique Visitors 3,078,409   Page Views refers to actual pages viewed. So if you look at three articles a month on TMCnet you represent 3 page views. Our prior average was 20 million.   30,977,147 represents a 50+% increase over the prior record.   Average Visit Length represents how much time a person spends on the site   Unique Visitors represents how many unique viewers came to TMCnet in the entire month.   Thank you also to the TMC team for continuing to produce content our audience finds compelling.
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