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Rich Tehrani
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IP Communications

Intel Investment in Fonality

February 7, 2007

I am a bit confused as I read the news on Tom’s blog about Fonality getting a cash infusion from Intel Capital. With this investment, Intel is investing in technologies such as telecom that encourage the use of Intel processors. On the surface this is very smart but it seems that if Intel was so interested in telecom they should have kept Dialogic within the company.   Granted Dialogic may not have been a perfect strategic fit but they could have spun it out as a separate business unit – but still under the Intel umbrella. It just seems inconsistent to sell Dialogic and then a few months later go and invest $7 million dollars in an open-source PBX company.   Why?

TMCnet Mobile

February 2, 2007

If you are looking for the best communications and technology news on the go be sure to check out TMCnet Mobile which will display very well on most mobile devices. The service is in alpha at the moment but seems pretty stable based on my brief experience.   Any web browser can see this page by the way. Check it out now if you like.   One thing it does that I consider great about this new service but others may not like is that it allows you access to parts of TMCnet that are formatted for the mobile device.   In other words if a link exists in an article that is not formatted for the mobile device you can still get there. This is great depending ion your web device.   What is very frustrating to me about other sites is that when you click on a link in an article that is not formatted for a mobile device you get redirected to a page that is a mobile home page.

IMS: Are We There Yet?

February 2, 2007

Here is my unedited Publisher’s Outlook for IMS Magazine for February 2007.

I start this column thinking about the most recent TMC IMS Expo last week in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. The takeaway for me from this event is that the market is somewhat confused about IMS.   Still, I can’t help but wonder if history is repeating itself. After all when I launched Internet Telephony Magazine – the sister publication to IMS Magazine, many service providers did not take the technology seriously.   Service providers first universally dismissed VoIP and then started to experiment with it when carrying their backhaul traffic. One would imagine the cable companies would have jumped all over VoIP quickly but they just didn’t.   There was early euphoria for IP telephony in 1998-2000 but from 2001-2003 virtually all service providers dismissed VoIP as something just not viable or worth discussing.

The Real Unified Communications Relationship between Microsoft and Nortel

February 2, 2007

The Real Unified Communications Relationship between Microsoft and Nortel   With all the IP communications industry focus on ITEXPO last week it was difficult to get a chance to share my thoughts on happenings from the prior week – especially between Nortel and Microsoft.   I really had a great time in New York listening to Steve Ballmer the CEO of Microsoft and Mike Zafirovski the CEO of Nortel talk about their collaborative Unified Communications strategy. What you may not know because you weren’t at the press conference is just how passionate Steve Ballmer is about communications. He is serious about our market and this could be a very good thing.   When I asked Steve about educating the market about Unified communications he got animated and his eyes lit up. He said, “When you show people this stuff, they get it.

ITEXPO Comments on Video

February 1, 2007

Since Internet Telephony Conference & Expo last week – TMC has received a steady stream of testimonials unlike I have ever seen for any tech show ever. So many people have told me that ITEXPO in Ft. Lauderdale was the best show they have ever attended that I don’t know what to say. It has been quite amazing. Our marketing department has been scrambling just to keep up with all the testimonials that have been steadily arriving.   A few of the testimonials are up in video format already.

The State of US Broadband

February 1, 2007

A few of my friends have ordered FiOS from Verizon and they seem happy to have broadband access at speeds once unavailable from phone companies. The sad thing is that even though broadband speeds are increasing in the US the cost of the connections are higher than in many other parts of the world and the speeds are still only a fraction of what others are experiencing in places like Asia.   If you want to learn about the current state of broadband in the US and some of the things that can be done to ensure we become more competitive you should read Eight Bold Steps to a national Broadband Policy (PDF) by Jim Baller and Casey Lide.   The article outlines how other countries continue to surpass the US in broadband penetration as well as broadband capacity for the dollar. China, Japan Sweden and Australia are all mentioned in the article and to be honest I continue to grow concerned about the state of broadband in the US.   We all know how important the internet is to enhancing productivity as well as the myriad other benefits it provides. I have always been in favor of a hands off style of government but if we have a system in this country to reward homeowners by allowing them to deduct interest on their mortgage payments why are we not coming up with a system to ensure all Americans have the highest speed connections at the lowest prices?   In my opinion there is no question that broadband access in the 21st century is as important as home ownership was in the 20th century.   Part of me hopes that by allowing a single AT&T to emerge we will see free markets and competition allow us to catch up to other countries.

Toshiba Brian Metherell Interview

January 31, 2007

Toshiba is a company you think about in just about every area of tech. In fact I recently ditched my old laptop from another manufacturer for a Toshiba laptop and so far so good. When you think of this Japanese electronics giant you may not think about VoIP or even communications.   But Toshiba is in fact taking the communications space very seriously and in fact they have had business communications systems for a long while. Generally the company has kept a low profile on their communications products in the US but perhaps that will change going forward.

ITEXPO Photos and More

January 30, 2007

Here is Ari Zoldan from Launch 3 based in Garfield, NJ. His company is in the investment business - they invest in communications companies worldwide.   On this day he walked away with a great education as well as a new SUV. Wow – now that’s a show.   About 30 minutes later when I accidentally saw him on the road he seemed elated. I think the shock wore off and it turned to happiness.       Note to self.

New Digium CEO

January 30, 2007

Mark Spencer is a competitive weapon at Digium and is well-liked by many in the open source community. It was evident to anyone who knows Mark that he is spread thin as a coder, manager, chief strategy officer and company spokesman. As the company expands the smartest thing the company could do is divide Mark’s responsibilities allowing the company continue its rapid growth rate without having to count on Mark for everything.   I just read on Tom Keating’s blog (he heard it from Alec Saunders) that Mark will become Chairman and CTO and Danny J. Windham, President, Chief Operating Officer and director of ADTRAN will become the new CEO of Digium.   There is a synergistic relationship between ADTRAN and Digium which you can learn about on Tom’s blog. I believe this a great moved for the company and for the open source community as a whole.

Even More Photos

January 29, 2007

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