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Rich Tehrani and TMC at Interop 2011

May 9, 2011

I am here in Las Vegas getting ready for Interop 2011. I apologize for not being connected more - but I've been doing wall-to-wall video interviews all of last week as well as speaking at the Broadvox Partner Summit. Not to mention watching the gorgeous US scenery as I travel from NY to Dallas and back and then to Vegas.

To check out the videos from last week you can click on the first one and they will loop through. BTW, one of these videos is being held back because the news is embargoed.

Later today I will be at a reception with Cisco execs and at the moment my editorial team is at another Cisco event which involves a Q&A session with their CIO.

Then its on to at least 80 interviews - I am looking forward to gauging the mood of the exhibitors and speakers at the show.

Finally, this Wednesday, May 11th at 8:00 AM, TMC will host a breakfast  focusing on online community building and social networking... I will be speaking on tips and best practices and more.







Amazon EC2 Outage: What The Experts Tell Us

April 27, 2011

The recent Amazon outage of its EC2 service affected a number of leading-edge companies who in some cases used the fact that they housed little to no infrastructure on their premise as a selling point to investors. Certainly, the cloud computing market is in what we could call a post-evangelism phase where there seems to be universal agreement that the cloud has a role in most organizations – at least to help with some tasks – if not all. We know the concept of hosted solutions isn’t new – many companies outsource payroll for example or tax preparation.

But certainly, when the largest company providing cloud infrastructure has a major outage of one of its availability zones lasting days,  it’s time to sit back and reflect on the challenges of moving wholesale to the cloud without thinking the concept fully through.

Voice Carrier Wants a Big Piece of the SMB VoIP Pie

April 14, 2011

The business VoIP market has a tremendous amount of growth potential based on a recent FCC report I highlighted last week. And perhaps the most exciting aspect of the market is there is no single leading player which comes to mind – especially for the SMB. And losing and gaining marketshare in the segment can be done quite rapidly if you aren’t careful. Case in point are Comdial and Inter-Tel: two major players in the SMB CPE space just a decade-and-a-half ago.

Important HD Voice Research Report Available

April 7, 2011

You probably know I have been a huge proponent of HD voice as to me it’s an inevitable outcome of transitioning away from the PSTN to IP-based networks which allow us to upgrade CODECs without having to downshift our conversations to technology which was invented many decades ago. When I was a kid, television was an 11 inch black-and-white screen which seemed to always have Walter Cronkite on it and changing the channels was a manual and rotary process.

Yet, the incredible tech advancements we have seen in the television space haven’t yet fully materialized in the world of telephony. Sure, I can have high-quality conversations if a call stays on IP networks and there is no need for transcoding or jumping onto the public switched telephone network.

Leading SIP Client Bria Gets Upgrade to 3.2

April 6, 2011

WorldGate Communications Closes Shop

April 5, 2011

Word has it that funding was pulled at WorldGate Communications two weeks ago with everyone being laid off. Requests for information to the company did not get an immediate response. The Pennsylvania-based organization which made high-end designer-looking videophones no-doubt faced an uphill battle competing with Cisco and Polycom - as well as low-cost players like Grandstream.

When the company launched - years back I remember a massive crowd around its products at ITEXPO and other events - but getting tremendous attention at a show does not obviously always translate into success in business. Those of you who recall Wildfire's booth at the Computer Telephony Expo know what I mean.

The company seemed to be in a perpetual state of financial trouble and the best news I heard from them a while back was when they either received or were about to receive an order for an organization who was to supply videophones to the hearing-impaired so they could communicate via sign language.

TMC's Tom Keating reported troubles brewing at the company in February, 2008 and then reported when things got better in the next month saying Ojo Phone Lives!





Is AT&T Using Investment Angle to Silence Blumenthal?

March 25, 2011

One thing you have to give AT&T a tremendous amount of credit for is knowing how to work the regulatory system - legal, financial and lobbying to get deals done. They are absolute masters and off the record I hear amazing things about just how connected they are. And they will likely need to pull on all the strings they have access to in order to make the T-Mobile acquisition happen.

So realizing the US is a Republic made up of 50 states, the company has now begun working on public opinion in individual states. Consider that today alone the company has put out two releases regarding their building of what they call the most advanced mobile broadband experience in Cincinnati and Connecticut.

In boilerplate press releases where a few items are changed, the company explains that in the greater Cincinnati area it is going to install 10 new cell sites, add spectrum carriers to 35 cell sites, enhance backhaul to 100 cell sites to enable 4G and deploy a distributed antenna system at the Great American Ball Park and Paul Brown Stadium to enhance network coverage during events.



Android-Based ThunderBolt a Winner

March 20, 2011

I have to say after using the Android-based HTC ThunderBolt for a few minutes I was thoroughly impressed. It was like a mini-tablet and browsing sites was fast and its Flash support was very impressive. Its a 4G phone and I tested it for a few minutes on a WiFi network at TMC headquarters. Sadly there is no 4G network in Norwalk, Ct at the moment.

The specs are equally impressive with a 1 GHz processor, a WiFi hotspot for up to 8 devices and an 8 MP rear camera.

Android is indeed getting better - it still isn't as easy to use as an iOS device but as more users get Android gadgets - there will be a support system of users helping users just like with PCs.

I do recommend this phone but I have heard from at least one user that it is a battery hog and won't make it through a full day of heavy use.

TMC's Erik Linask has a more thorough review.







Use PayPal in the Mall?

March 15, 2011

For as long as I can remember the mantra has been the Internet will kill (insert your industry here). Magazines, brick and mortar, movies, music, photos... You name it. The truth is, in many cases the predictions were accurate.

The interesting part of the story however is now the offline world is allowing the Internet to benefit by finding business opportunities worthy of exploitation.

Skype Pre-IPO Report Card

March 7, 2011

It was back in 2007 when my fellow bloggers and journalists told me that Skype was a dog, had no future, couldn’t make money and wasn’t going anywhere. I begged to differ – the way I saw it the company simply didn’t execute on its potential. I quickly jotted down 11 ideas the company should pursue and in my post I even offered myself to Meg Whitman as a consultant to help implement my ideas.

Fast forward a few years and Meg is gone, and the company was sold and is now implementing the ideas – slowly but surely but many have been implanted in the last week which is why this analysis makes sense to present today.

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