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

Wearable Tech Expo 2014 Kicking off in NYC

My team is at the Jacob Javits Center setting up for Wearable Tech Expo 2014 which will take place Wednesday and Thursday...

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When Does WebRTC Need a Media Server? Reason #7

Tsahi Levent-Levi’s white paper, “Seven Reasons for WebRTC Server-Side Processing,” details a variety of WebRTC-related scenarios that necessitate a media server....

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How signaling spikes affect networks: 3 real-world examples

By: Josee Loudiadis, Director of Network Intelligence, Alcatel-Lucent

Data and signaling growth are usually good news for network operators, since growth often translates into higher revenues. But when growth is averaged over a month or quarter, the daily highs and lows of network activity are smoothed out. And signaling spikes remain hidden within the averages. These spikes can overwhelm available signaling capacity, which impairs the customer experience, as well as the operator’s reputation.

What happens when a spike occurs? Typically, a CPU Overload alarm appears on various mobile nodes. And the Network Operations Center (NOC) immediately starts praying that the burst is short-lived and doesn’t go over maximum peak-rate capacity. Because when that happens, all consumers are denied service access. Then, the process of identifying the source of the problem begins. This can be arduous, because it often involves applications completely out of NOC control. And the issue can’t be resolved easily without solid network analytics that enables engagement with application and device developers.

That’s the reason signaling information is a crucial part of the Alcatel-Lucent Mobile Apps Rankings report and why LTE World 2014 devotes an entire pre-conference day to the topic. It’s also why this blog offers a closer look at how some real-world disruptive signaling spikes got started — and were finally resolved.

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The Expanding Channel Programs

Not only do I see more cloud service providers looking to the channel for sales, I see other channel programs expanding....

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When Does WebRTC Need a Media Server? Reason #6

In a recent blog about the current state of WebRTC, I mentioned that readers should check out an excellent white paper...

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The Six Degrees of Mobile Data Plan Innovation: It's Not All About Data- Mobile Voice and Messaging Share Plans Offer Plenty of Appeal

Alcatel-Lucent’s Rich Crowe continues the Six Degrees of Mobile Data Plan Innovation blog series by examining the degree to which consumers are interested in share plans that include unlimited voice and messaging but don’t include data.

The last Six Degrees blog explored consumer attitudes toward two different mobile share plan options: sharing data only and sharing voice, messaging and data. This blog will explore attitudes toward a 3rd option: sharing unlimited voice and messaging — but not data — across multiple devices or subscribers.

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200G Optical Networks: What you need to know

By: Earl Kennedy, IP Transport Product Marketing, Alcatel-Lucent

Optical network operators have already made the move to 100G. But skyrocketing bandwidth demand means many are already pondering what’s next. With a 200G optical solution hitting the market, you probably have questions about when to move to 200G optical – and what you need to know when you make that move.

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How NC-Based Bandwidth Enables the Telecom Ecosystem

September 25, 2013

Bandwidth.com recently became just plain Bandwidth (no dotcom) as they unveiled a colorful new logo and announced an exciting array of products and services which support the communications ecosystem. The company's Republic Wireless division gives it strength in the MVNO space where its new Moto X supports both WiFi and cellular services powered by Sprint. Their wholesale solutions permit carriers to embed voice into their click-to-call apps and also allow an ILEC to become a CLEC without worrying about building out their own nationwide network. This UC service can be provided on a per-seat basis.

Vocalocity is Growing Quickly: Here's Why

September 25, 2013

Recently, customers, vendors and competitors have been talking about Vocalocity - as one of the fastest-growing cloud-based communications companies. In fact just a month ago Syngergy Research produced a report detailing how fast the cloud UC market is growing and mentioned Vocalocity is growing must faster than the market at at 45% while the market grew at 22%. This puts the company just behind 8x8 and Shoretel - which acquired M5 Networks to get into the cloud space in terms of market size.

An article from Steve Anderson on a TMCnet sister-site explains some of the reasons for the growth:

The channel partner program offers a campaign syndication tool that gives resellers options in terms of collateral and promotions so that the individual resellers get some choices in what can be offered.

Overture: Enabling Carriers to Compete Today

September 25, 2013

Communications service providers are facing unprecedented opportunity and threats and if the OTT threat wasn't a big enough challenge, its worth pointing out AT&T recently lost its bid to supply broadband to Starbucks to Google of all companies. Who would have thought this could even happen a mere five years ago?

I had a discussion about the pace of change in the CSP market with Mark Durrett of Overture and he went over many of the ways his company is helping carriers deal with the transition. The company is doing this through their Ensemble OSA product which is an open-architecture for software-defined services allowing service creation, activation and assurance by bringing many of the benefits of cloud computing to the metro edge.

Compass EOS and The Optical Approach to Core Routing

September 25, 2013

As core routers have to handle ever-faster data rates the high-speed connections suffer from a variety of problems as a result of challeenges which have to be overcome in inter-chip communications. Signal integrity becomes a problem over copper lines connecting ASICs as circut AC characteristics begin to dominate the impedance, inductance and conductance of the line and in-turn distort the signal. One way to mitigate these challenges is to utilize decision feedback equalization which consumes large amounts of power. Moreover, crosstalk has to be dealt with as electrical circuit speeds have reached the limits where traditional technology can overcome these effects.

Qwilt Speeds Video Downloads Worldwide

September 24, 2013

There are few constants in the world of technology - one of them has to be that there will never be enough bandwidth... Your connection can never keep up with the growing need of enterprises and consumers. Binge viewing especially has become a plague for carriers who are seeing their costs increase exponentially.

Enter Qwilt, the company that functions as a a virtual CDN-enabler for the last-mile through the use of appliances which run on COTS hardware and sit in the carrier network assisiting in caching in the important area between the core to aggregation to the edge to home.

Neustar Enables CSPS to Speed Their Carrier Ethernet Offerings

September 24, 2013

Neustar is one of the most amazing companies in the world of technology and telecom because they are involved in so many spaces and are responsible for allowing much of what we rely on to function correctly. In a recent conversation with Gary Zimmerman the head of marketing communications segment, he explained how Neustar is evolving into a an analytics company with its purchase of TARGUSinfo and others. Neustar is involved in short codes, SMS, Caller ID, LNP and more - they call themselves the neutral provider of real-time information and analytics to the communications services, financial services, retail, media and advertising sectors... Wow!

Optelian Lowers Packet Optical Service Roll Out Costs

September 24, 2013

SDN is a wonderful technology for networking but its a few layers up from packet optical service meaning you can't take advanatage of the latest in software defined networking innovation. In a conversation with Brian Pratt of Optelian, I had a chance to discuss how his company is trying to bring some of the best concepts in the SDN world to the packet optical world.

One of the main benefits of allowing software to manage the rollout and provisioning of packet optical service is you need less Ethernet engineers and WDM experts to deal with configuration and provisioning. The company sees this new world as being embodied by the concept of service-driven networking, a term which has the exact same acronym as software defined networking - on purpose.

H2O Overgroup Speeds Telecom Carriers

September 24, 2013

As tier 2 and 3 carrriers have started to face more competition from cable and larger SIP trunking providers, they have had to look to new markets in order to grow revenue. The challenge with this strategy is dealing with billing and management of a slew of new competitive services. Enter H2O Overgroup, a company helping these carriers with billing and backoffice operations. Evan Rice (pictured) the company's VP of Sales & Marketing spent some time explaining how the market is evolving, causing his company's customers to grow into numerous markets.

A Business Lesson that Cost Investors More than $500 million

September 21, 2013

Apple has such a halo around it that when the head of it's retail stores left the company to head up J.C. Penney, many people thought it was an amazing move and would result in the retailer of low-cost merchandise becoming more like one of the most storied tech companies of our lifetimes.

I certainly expressed skepticism about this happening - Ron Johnson's vision was to stop having sales (product markdowns) at the store and building stores within stores and bringing in more high-end merchandise.

About a decade ago an electronics store located in the northeast of the US called The Whiz was closed down. Cablevision had bought the store a few years earlier and the marriage made sense as the cable company was able to attract large amounts of people into its stores because they needed to get their cable boxes repaired or upgraded.

16 iOS 7 Changes to Know About

September 18, 2013

iOS 7 is a radical departure from the previous version of the OS – it is cooler and hipper and really makes your iOS device seem new. Then again, sometimes the familiar is best and change isn’t that good – especially when you are looking for something and don’t know where it went.

Speaking of which, here is a list of changes in iOS7 to know about.

  1. Downloading iOS 7 was perhaps the worst download experience some of you have ever faced. I downloaded it over 30 times on two devices before I could upgrade them.
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