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

VisibilityOne Launches Crucial Videoconferencing Monitoring Solution

Industry Veteran Von Bedekian (above) has launched an exciting new company along with his past coworker Jose De La Paz (below). Von...

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ITEXPO is Next Week, Get to Know Participants Now

We can't wait to host you at ITEXPO next week in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.To get you up to speed on who you...

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As we Predicted in 2015, VW Managers are Being Indicted

On Thursday, a federal grand jury in Detroit, Michigan, indicted four Audi executives for playing a role in the diesel cheating scandals...

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D.C., Virginia, Most Concerned About Phishing Attacks

Phishing is a global scourge. Just today, Danny Palmer at ZDNET writes an excellent piece about how cybercrime is a $600...

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What's Big This Year in Telecom? Vote Now!

TMCnet and Andy Abramson and his company Comunicano are asking in the first annual VoIPWatch Poll.. The results will be revealed at...

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PHISH360 Helps Solve The $12.5B Phishing Problem

The FBI says email attacks cost business $12.5 billion!This is in-part because hacking into a person's account could be as easy as...

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Can't Miss at ITEXPO Jan 29-Feb 1st in Florida

Thanks to your feedback, we have been building ITEXPO into the most comprehensive business tech event around focusing on communications and IT.First...

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Cockroach Labs Launches Managed CockroachDB: The Geo-Distributed Database as a Service

October 31, 2018



Typically you don't name your company after insects which make people call an exterminator but Cockroach Labs is a great name for a database which is designed to be up 24x7. Put it this way - what other name would be able to allow customers to infer the product can rapidly replicate and survive disasters?



To learn more about this up and coming database, we had an exclusive interview with Nate Stewart, VP of Product and Jessica Edwards, Director of Marketing and Community.


Nate said, "We have figured out how to take an SQL database and scale it horizontally." He continued, "People thought it was too hard to do this which explains the rise of NoSQL."

The company bills itself as a resilient SQL database for global business. Obviously, business continuity is a core feature as the solution not only minimizes planned and unplanned downtime... It eliminates all downtime.














Dispersive Networks Hopes to Be the Future of Secure Networking

October 30, 2018

The December 2015 Ukraine power grid cyberattack was the first successful attack on a power grid and this event gave rise to Dispersive Networks.

According to Wikipedia, the attack was complex consisting of the following steps:



  • Prior compromise of corporate networks using spear-phishing emails with BlackEnergy malware;
  • Seizing SCADA under control, remotely switching substations off;
  • disabling/destroying IT infrastructure components (uninterruptible power suppliesmodems, RTUs, commutators);
  • Destruction of files stored on servers and workstations with the KillDisk malware;
  • Denial-of-Service attack on call-center to deny consumers up-to-date information on the blackout.

In total, up to 73 MWh of electricity was not supplied (or 0.015% of daily electricity consumption in the Ukraine).

Cyber attacks on the energy distribution companies took place during an ongoing Russian-Ukrainian war and is attributed to a Russian advanced persistent threat group known as "Sandworm".

If there is any good news that emerged as a result, it was people trying to find ways to prevent such attacks in the future. 



In an exclusive interview with Ed Wood, CEO at Dispersive Networks we learned how his company took the knowledge of this attack and used it as the basis of their technology which uses tech principles from telecom like spread-spectrum to take networking to the next level.





IBM Buys Red Hat - What Took so Long?

October 28, 2018

The late nineties are when IBM decided to make a big bet on Linux and open-source. It was a smart bet. They saw where the market was going and hopped on early.

In 1999, in fact, one year before the dotcom crash that the company announced it was jumping in.

It was a fairly big deal. IBM was known for proprietary operating systems and hardware and pretty much everything else.



MicroCorp Continues to Grow in SD-WAN, UC, Cloud and MPLS

October 26, 2018

As global enterprises are embracing SD-WAN and the move to the cloud, we decided to reach out for an exclusive interview with Trish Kapos – VP Marketing & Strategic Relationships at Microcorp.

This 32-year-old company is getting into large enterprise deals – the channel's largest SD-WAN deal as far as anyone knows, and even a  Fortune 5 account in their portfolio. The award-winning organization has over 80 providers, from AT&T to Zayo.

As a premier value-added distributor of telecom and cloud solutions, they have simplified the purchase and management of telecommunications services for business customers. Today, the MicroCorp People-Powered Network is a powerful combination of back-office systems, people and support offerings in the industry.

MicroCorp prides itself on being your whole back office or an extension of your current team, allowing customers to focus on growing their business profitably. In addition, their collaborative back office portal, Nautilus helps position them as a trusted, skilled partner for a national network of agents, MSPs and VARs.





Trish explained their growth areas are SD-WAN, UC, cloud and even MPLS is growing.

In terms of differentiation, the company prides itself on providing flawless commissions the first time to minimize or eliminate the need to recover them later.

Trish said, "MicroCorp is making huge investments in the area of automated tools as we continually see that self-service tools are what drive partner engagement."



She continued, "We are focused on the ecosystem and assist our partners in building a network of experts around them, along with programs that protect their customers and commissions as they open their customer doors to these experts."

Finally, MicroCorp’s Cloud Elements division is quickly filling the funnel with cloud opportunities.












Yamaha Brings Audio Expertise to UC

October 17, 2018

"People don't always understand the value of audio in meetings," said Randall Lee, Director Strategic Channel Marketing at Yamaha Corporation when speaking about the company's UC solutions.

This reminds us... We were once an amateur audiophile ourselves. In the days when we had to drag a diamond over a spinning plastic disc to produce quality tunes. And even back then, we knew about the Yamaha legacy.

They have actually been in the U.S.



Cyara: Don't Forget the Customer Experience in Digital Transformation

October 15, 2018





As companies embrace digital transformation (DX), they shouldn’t forget about the customer experience (CX) says Elizabeth Magill, Senior Director, Product Marketing at Cyara in an exclusive interview. Cyara automates testing and monitoring.

We first introduced this company to you in 2011 where we told you this:

And what they did for the bank was to help them take disparate solutions handling IVR, speech, complex routing algorithms, Websphere, java apps and more and integrate them more efficiently to dramatically improve customer satisfaction.

In 2013 we explained how the company is improving service levels, specifically at Franklin Templeton. In 2016 we had a video interview with the company explaining how Cyara helps their customers innovate faster.

Phone.Com adds Enterprise Features and HIPAA Compliance

October 10, 2018


As Phone.Com crossed the 30,000 customer mark we decided to have an exclusive interview with Alon Cohen, CTO and Executive VP. Alon is credited with being a founder of the VoIP market as a co-founder of VocalTec, the Israeli company which sold PC software and gateways allowing calls to traverse packetized IP networks for the first time.



Alon was very excited to discuss the company's new cloud architecture - the serverless solution allows the company to focus more on business logic. In fact, they can now respond to requests for changes quite rapidly as a result. He said, "We can respond in a day or two if a big customer needs a feature."

Telecom systems were once famous for being extremely slow when new features were needed.






Jabra Elite 65t: The Ideal Earbuds for Most People

October 5, 2018



Let's get one thing straight at the start - Apple AirPods have taken the market by storm and have become very popular, very quickly. The Jabra Elite 65t buds are better in many ways and worth serious consideration. We have been using them for six months - at least five days per week as our main headphones and this is what we like and don't.

Likes

Style: Sleek silver buds look one-hundred times better than stalks coming out of your ears. Remember how odd the first few people looked when you first saw them with AirPods?



Telestax: Carriers Must be Ready for CPaaS 2.0

September 24, 2018

A massive shift took place in telecom with the advent of VoIP and SIP. Carriers who initially downplayed the reliability of both, eventually got on board after 2003 when Vonage started to take residential share and Skype started to become a more obvious threat.

Eventually, SIP trunking became a way for communications service providers or CSPs to make money from IP communications.

Another transformation is taking place in telecom - this time it's CPaaS companies such as Twilio and Nexmo (part of Vonage). The space has high valuations and is taking away high-margin transactions from carriers. They are slowly morphing into CSPs themselves through software.

Carriers are now facing competition on the low-end in the form of consumer VoIP as well as on the high-end where CPaaS providers continue to take away enterprise business.

The solution is to use a white-label solution so carriers can quickly  compete with CPaaS vendors and protect their turf according to Kevin Nethercott, VP of Business Development at Telestax who spoke to us in an exclusive interview.







Stack8: Achieving the Promise of UC and UCaaS

September 21, 2018



When it comes to UC, quite often, integrators leave when a system is technically up and running, not when it is optimally running. Stack8 was founded in 2010 to address this gap by bringing enterprise UC systems closer to what they could be doing from what they are doing.

The name Stack8 is interesting - it comes from the 7 layers OSI model starting at the bottom - the  physical layer carrying binary transmission all the way up to layer 7 or the application layer.

Stack8 refers to the human and business layer which runs on top.

CEO Steven Karachinsky explained in an exclusive interview, his company fights for customers to achieve the promise of UC and network - allowing users to communicate anywhere, anytime, on any device.
 

They work with companies using Cisco UC and fill in the gaps.

Sample customer list


For example - moves, adds and changes using a level 2 engineer is challenging as it's expensive, doesn't provide job satisfaction for the tech, zaps morale and is low priority, meaning a new employee could wait 48 hours for a new phone to be configured.

As a result, they built SMACS or the STACK8 Moves, Adds and Changes System so non-technical users can take over the task without errors. He explained ease-of-use is very important to them - there is no new terminology to learn, the logic is built-in and there are no templates needed like other solutions on the market.

"We try to make it as easy as smartphones," he exclaimed.

There is a Dial-Plan Manager which acts like an airplane seat selector, showing available numbers when you're assigning a new extension.



In addition, the IT administrator can:
  • Decide which fields or services should be shown to and hidden from the user.
  • Choose which fields are required.
  • Provide default values for any field.
  • Select and order the values of any drop down.
  • Customize text fields such as descriptions and labels to follow your company standards.
  • Set restrictions based on location (e.g. define a New York SMACS user and a Chicago user who can each do provisioning only for their office.)

Then you can authorize non-technical people in office administration, human resources or other departments to take over user provisioning.




























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