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Rich Tehrani
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Verizon Loses VoIP Patent Case: Justice Served?

October 7, 2008

One of the last companies to jump on the VoIP bandwagon is Verizon. Yet -- our legal system allows larger companies with deep pockets who focus more on patents than providing users with new technology to easily sue new competitors into oblivion.

This is the case with Vonage -- the company paying over a hundred million dollars for patent infringement to Verizon. Cable companies are another matter as they have large legal teams and deep enough pockets to defend themselves from patent suits which may or may not be frivolous.

Recently, a jury decided Cox Communications did not infringe Verizon patents. This is great news for Cox and regardless of who is right or wrong in a complex legal case like this, having a jury trial where six patents are in question and winning all six is surprising.



WiMAX World 2008 Update

October 6, 2008

WiMAX has gone through an overhype stage and now is like so many other technologies - VoIP included, at a stage where the markets are trying to figure out where the opportunities lie. Indeed, trying to determine what is real and what is hype is difficult to do and to cut through the FUD (fear, uncertainty and doubt) I spent time at WiMAX World in Chicago to learn more from the movers and shakers in the space.

I came armed with questions about deployments and the threat of LTE - the evolutionary technology theoretically enabling 2-3G operators to ignore WiMAX. In the last six months there have been numerous articles and technical white papers written about whether WiMAX is necessary.

To cut to the chase, I spoke with VP Chair, Marketing Working Group of the WiMAX Forum, Dr. Mo Shakouri who explained that the transition to LTE is more than a simple software upgrade as carriers need to go from CDMA to OFDM - which obviously requires hardware. They believe there is a strong marketing campaign being waged by mobile operators and some hardware providers who want to sow FUD in the WiMAX market.

In order to combat the threat from LTE the WiMAX Forum is feverishly working with companies to develop lower cost CPE devices as carrier profitability is tied to device cost.





Navigating the Financial Crisis

October 4, 2008

I have been getting more and more questions on where the communications market stands in light of macroeconomic conditions. It is a constant in my frequent conversations. In most cases, when I get this question, people tell me their business is good but they wonder if the housing market problems will trickle down into the telecom space.

The answer is simply, I do believe there is risk to all sectors of the global economy. For the first time in my memory, US and other political leaders have come on TV and mentioned the term global crisis on a frequent basis.

Mobile Banking to Skyrocket

October 2, 2008

Communications and the Economy

September 29, 2008

Please note this post was written approximately one week ago -- before the news of the bailout bill failing began to spread fear in the financial markets. Stay tuned to learn how the financial markets will affect communications and technology.

Many people asked me recently at ITEXPO West 2008 Los Angeles, what I see happening in the communications market from an economic perspective. Let's just say that on the way to the show, I was watching TV as the stock market plunged and there was talk of another Great Depression. When I got to the show I must say I was unclear how the financial markets would affect the communications space.

SIP the Future

September 23, 2008

ITEXPO West 2008 Some More Stories

September 18, 2008

Here are a few news stories I came across today to keep you up to date on show happenings so far. I didn't get a chance to read them all by the way but I wanted to share as soon  as I could.



ITEXPO West 2008 Best of Show

September 18, 2008

8x8/Packet8 and Microsoft SMB VoIP Collaboration

September 17, 2008

Breaking News

There is big news out of ITEXPO this week in Los Angeles. 8x8 and Microsoft just released the news that the two companies will be working together to offer Packet8 VoIP SIP trunking service with the Microsoft Response Point Business Phone System.

At a press conference held by Bryan Martin CEO of 8x8 and XD Huang General Manager of Microsoft, the two companies addressed a large crowd of analysts and press regarding the huge opportunity the two will take advantage of.

In order to maximize the relationship, the both will jointly market the combined solution through their respective VAR channels. In addition, they will jointly market this solution online and via other marketing channels.

For 8x8, this agreement further cements its position as an SMB IP communications provider who seems to be operating on all cylinders. The company was smart to focus on the SMB market years back when it became clear the consumer VoIP market was hard to make money in.







GIPS Gets Russian Win

September 15, 2008

In years past the competition between GIPS and Spirit DSP has been the stuff of legend. While the competitive situation has unwound over the past 18 months or so it is still interesting to see how the companies compete with one another.

For example, some news out of this week's ITEXPO is that exhibitor GIPS has just announced it has been selected by Mail.Ru to have its GIPS' VoiceEngine embedded inside the Mail.Ru Agent, starting with version 5.2 -- allowing affordable calls to stationary and mobile phones.

Of course the interesting thing here is Spirit DSP is based in Moscow -- so this is a win in foreign territory for GIPS and the company can look forward to having its solutions rolled out to about 50 million new Russian users.



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