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| Communications and Technology Blog - Latest news in IP communications, telecom, VoIP, call center & CRM space

VoLTE Versus WebRTC: I didn't know it was a battle

When I talk to customers, they often ask about how WebRTC compares to voice over LTE (VoLTE), and which technology “will...

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These 3 Do Everything Together

At a few shows, including the latest ITEXPO, the 3 big cablecos - TWC, Comcast and Charter - share a booth....

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Modems? In This Day and Age?

Not so many years ago, the only way to connect to the Internet was via a modem. You would use your...

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How to Speed Small Cell Site Acquisition on a Large Scale

By: Jean Jones, Director, Wireless Marketing, Alcatel-Lucent

Outdoor small cells are now widely recognized as a great solution for expanding mobile capacity and coverage. And their use is expected to grow sevenfold by 2018.[1] So here’s the next big question: How can you put these cells where they’re needed, faster and at lower cost?

Maybe you’ve already encountered deployment issues, including difficulties with small cell site acquisition. According to an Informa Telecoms & Media survey, nearly 60% of mobile operators say that deployment problems are their biggest small cell challenge.[2] In other words, operators’ top concerns are not about small cell technologies or products. Instead, they’re about the practical aspects of getting these cells up and running on light posts, utility poles, bus stops, buildings and other street locations.

This blog looks at a collaborative approach that makes these deployment processes faster and easier. Alcatel-Lucent adopted these methods for our Metro Cell Express Site Certification Program. And we’re discussing them here, because this business model earned a top award in the small cell innovation leadership category.

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HumansFirst ColdSmoke Lets You Buy with your Smartphone

While speech-technology has come a long way, we still haven’t entered the world of Star Trek reruns where the computer can do...

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Structural Separation via REIT Equals Zero Taxes

Windstream got the endorsement of the IRS to transfer their assets - copper and fiber plant - to a REIT and...

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Connected Cars as an Everyday Lifestyle

By: Ellis Lindsay, General Manager, Customer Experience Solutions, Alcatel-Lucent 

I drive to work and back home in my car every day. I tune in to a radio station for traffic news and upcoming events nearby. Like many of you I’m sure, this is a typical everyday activity. And like never before, we are connected to our home, our families, our phones, our work and our friends in a network that seems to be always on. Shouldn’t we be in a lifestyle where we are consistently connected to the everyday activities in our lives? Well, let me introduce you to the world of Connected Cars. Full Story »

Mer Group Describes Future Innovations at MWC 2014

February 27, 2014

In many emerging markets there is a black market for money, corruption and fraud. It is for this reason that Mer Group has customized its mobile money platform and added budget managent, transfer and dedicated money solutions in addition to current features like person-to-person, payments and top-up capabilities.

One challenge for countries is by the time money gets from the governemmnt to a school for example, part or much of it is lost. To get around this challenge, Mer Group digitizes the money, then requires multiple authorizations and then the budget gets transferred more securely.

MIPI Alliance Works on New Specs for Audio and Sensors

February 27, 2014

In a conversation with Peter Lefkin and Michael Krell of the MIPI Alliance at MWC 2014 we discussed how this ten-year-old alliance was started to help camera chips in cell phones have a common standard and has subsequently evolved to over 45 published specifications for things like display, audio and yes cameras.

Formally, the areas of focus are Multimedia, Control/Data (RF/envelope tracking - many analog technologies), Chip-to-Chip (connecting the application processor to other systems) and Debug and Trace.

New for this show is SoundWire which is an interface for dealing with audio and microphones - this interface is better than their existing SlimBus which wasn't designed for a digital, off-platform world (external speakers, etc).

Napatech Achieves Next Speed Milestone: 320 Gbps

February 27, 2014

 

Network equipment manufacturers (NEMs) provide solutions for lots of markets such as mobile analytics, backhaul and others. In backhaul applications, the traffic is tunneled in order to provide confidentiality. In many cases when you need to get access to this data, software is too slow when running on generic servers. In order to speed the process up, Napatech provides hardware which takes this data and makes it readable by utilizing application specific multicore chips in order to provide throughput which is up to 16x faster than traditional alternatives.

Italtel Helps CSPs Benefit From WebRTC and NFV

February 27, 2014

I had a dynamic conversation with Italtel's Frederico Descalzo at MWC 2014 I learned about how the company is providing next-gen solutions for carriers, enabling them to maximize the potential of WebRTC and the transition to the software telco through NFV and SDN.

The company built its own cloud-ready SBC which was more scaleable and better at handling media conversion and transcoding on a session-by-session basis than those provided by typical vendors in the market he told me. In their implementation, virtualized functions for media and signal handling allow the product to scale at the customer prem or in the cloud. He said carriers are concerned about NFV and whether they can deal with IP+IT+telco merged together.

Sequans Powers Innovative Pinyon Tech LTE Hotspot

February 27, 2014

A very large market for 4G happens to be India but the catch is the population is extremely price-sensitive. In order to provide the country with a solution which maximizes the LTE opportunity for carriers, Pinyon Technologies partnered with Sequans Communications to develop the AirWire LTE WiFi dongle, a unique device designed primarily for home/business connectivity.

Unlike most LTE hotspots, this device is clamshell in nature and packs a relatively huge high-gain antenna. The benefit to carriers is that their towers can be more sparsely located or alternatively the device will use less power.

Elitecore Technologies Speeds Carrier Roll Outs

February 26, 2014

One of the trends at MWC 2014 was that of speed. Time to market for carriers needs to decrease to keep costs down and allow them to be more nimble. One of the companies at the show, Elitecore Technologies recently announced a win which they credit in-part to their ability to help their carrier customer deploy very quickly.

In fact, Vaibhav Mehta the company's spokesperson told me they were able to deploy their integrated policy, charging and revenue management solutions at Lanka Bell in Sri Lanka to help them roll out next-generation services like prepaid-postpaid broadband, broadband data burst (LTE + Wi-Fi), VOIP, WiFi hotspot, ILL, SIP & VPN solutions.

How AT&T Will Become a Software Telco

February 26, 2014

AT&T recently announced their User-Defined Network Cloud designed to allow customers to have more control while giving them the ability to add new network services in almost real-time in an on-demand fashion. You have heard me drone on about how the software telco is going to be the future of the telecom market and AT&T effectively has confirmed this idea throug this announcement regarding their Domain 2.0 supplier program.

The idea here is to bring more innovation into the carrier equipment space by allowing CSPs to run software on top of virtualized instances on OTS servers, allowing them to have the same flexibility inherent in data centers and typical cloud-based solutions.

The idea here is allowing services like WhatsApp and others to be rolled out quickly on the carrier network in order to compete more effectively with OTT players.

Xceed Looks to Boost Wireless Test Productivity

February 26, 2014

A major challenge for wireless operators is managing their networks in a cost-effective manner and one company looking to help with the challenge is Xceed Technologies. I spoke with Bary Azmi CEO & President and Asokan Sethu CTO (pictured right-to-left) of the company to learn more about how their Xynergy Correlation Platform helps carriers.

The pair explained that they take any drive-test equipment data and make it visual and actionable, allowing for business and marketing strategies to be more easily developed. Moreover, the company touts its goal of ensuring the data is seamless across engineering and marketing, allowing these departments to "speak the same language."

SOTI Aims to Make Android More Enterprise Ready

February 25, 2014

Customers deploying mobility solutions have a major challenge in deploying secure solutions to their clients in a BYOD environment. Enterprise Mobility Management is a growing space and at MWC 2014 I had a chance to meet with Carl Rodrigues, President & CEO of Soti and Roula Vrsic, VP of Marketing to learn about how their company helps enterprises maximize their workflow productivity.

Vrsic said enterprises are looking to maximize the number of applications they roll out on mobile. She mentioned how healtchare is going mobile but we may not have envisioned this trend some years ago.

ResponseTek Looks to Boost CSP Service Levels

February 25, 2014

The fundamental question which drives all business is did my customers have a good experience today. The bigger your enterprise gets, the more difficult it is to determine. ResponseTek holds the entire organization accountable on a minute-by-minute basis to ensure customers get the experience they are promised. When this doesn't happen, you get big churn rates - which can be as high as 20% in the telecom sector.

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