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IP Communications

Snom Riding Lync Wave to Success

August 19, 2013

In a recent meeting with Snom’s Mike Storella in the company’s office in Massachusetts, I had a chance to learn how the company is riding the Microsoft Lync wave to success. One of the early differentiators they touted was Lync phones which allowed multiple lines – an essential feature for many, including executives who don’t answer their own phones.

This early flexibly caught the attention of Microsoft – not to mention a number of Fortune class companies who needed such features.

Mike touted other features as well like the company being first to allow device-based music-on-hold for Lync as well as being first to qualify a device for the Microsoft Lync 2013 compatible devices program.

Comverse ONE Helps CSPs Monetize Digital Services

August 7, 2013


In March I detailed how Comverse Share is helping carriers integrate the best of social networking with their carrier offerings allowing a CSP to communicate with customers in an environment where they are spending more of their time. The integration of social into the typical service provider business model means carriers can use information from these networks to provide their customers offers on specific products and services. For example a sports fan could get an offer on a package which offers football video streaming.

In the above interview I spoke with Alice Bartram and last week I followed up with her and Mike Huffman in their Mass based headquarters to report on the latest offerings coming from her company.

Axis Communications Uses APIs and Low-Light Tech to Differentiate

August 5, 2013

One constant in business has been the ecosystem can be more important than the product. As an example, if a person is considering attending a conference, they typically look at the speakers and exhibitors to see if there is a fit before booking their trip. In other cases they will look to see who else is attending before they decide to pull the trigger. Over the last few decades a number of tech companies did their best to attract developers to their platforms to build their ecosystems.

Americans Don't Know They Want Wearable Tech Yet

July 8, 2013

Recently a headline stating that most Americans don’t want wearable tech caught my eye and reminded me of many past of articles regarding consumer choices which were just plain wrong. The piece can be summed up with the following paragraph:

The April telephone poll of 1,011 Americans 18 and older found that only 34 percent of those polled who make $100,000 or more a year would consider buying or wearing a consumer-grade smart watch or smart glasses. For those with a significantly smaller income, $35,000 annually, the percentage of those interested in the technology increases to 47 percent.

The implication of the headline is the wearable market will remain a niche and while this could very well be the case, the reality is consumers and analysts have no idea where markets which haven’t been invented yet will be in the future.

WebRTC APIs all the Rage at WebRTC Expo Atlanta 2013

June 24, 2013

WebRTC Expo kicks off this week and it's been a busy day here in Atlanta, Georgia where I have had back-to-back video interviews with companies in tech and telecom. A few of my meetings with companies involved in WebRTC were perhaps the most interesting as I see a trend devloping.

Soufiane Houri of Weemo told me about the company's cloud-based API service which allows any developer to embed video collaboration. The goal here is to enable this collaboration to take place without the need to make a user leave one application and go to another.

Facebook famously announced similar integration with Skype a few years back with the idea being allowing users to stay in the platform and collaborate with their friends.

Software Telcos Based on NFV Want Less Equipment Provider M&A

June 18, 2013

Mergers are nothing new but about a decade ago in the telecom market they reached a fever pitch when SBC purchased AT&T and rebranded itself with the name of the acquired company. At the time it became common in the industry to believe consolidation among carriers meant consolidation needed to take place at the equipment supplier level.

The idea is if you have fewer customers, you have less pricing power which means lower overhead with means merging suppliers can eliminate redundant costs such as accounting, marketing, HR and other “synergistic” areas of the business.

Large carriers have also been known for choosing large suppliers for their hardware needs as they felt these larger companies were more likely to be around to support them in the future as they roll out their solutions.

Yealink SIP T-38G Review

June 17, 2013



The Yealink SIP T-38G Gigabit color LCD PoE IP phone is another impressive IP phone following in the steps of the Yealink T-28P that Tom Keating reviewed in 2010. Tom liked the 4-way arrow navigation keypad, which continues on the T-38G, making navigating on the color screen a breeze. The T-38P also features a very similar web admin page as the T-28P and like Tom I had no trouble adding the SIP credentials, configuring the NTP server, adding speed dials, and other various configuration options.

While referencing Tom's T-28P review for comparison to the T-38G, Tom has this noteworthy comment:
The web interface displays a message when the phone is registered so you know immediately if you put the SIP credentials in correctly. I have to say, I really loved how every change I made DOES NOT require a reboot.




A Billion WebRTC Endpoints Force Voice and Data Players to Adapt or Die

June 5, 2013


From an evolutionary standpoint regardless of whether we talk about nature or business, adaptation is a key to success in changing environments. During the industrial revolution in London a species of moth with a white color blended in with the bark of the local trees until soot from the nearby factories turned the trees black. Some darker moths were now camouflaged in the dark trees and eventually the species adapted and became black. When air quality improved, the moths over successive generations changed color again.

Avaya Takes Networking Lead in SPB

May 15, 2013

At Interop Las Vegas 2013 Avaya was demonstrating their real-world Shortest Path Bridging (SPB) solutions and while interoperating with Spirent, HP and Alcatel-Lucent. Many of you will remember when Avaya was actually the enterprise division of Lucent before the company spun off just over twelve years ago. Randy Cross the company’s director of PLM discussed how there is a rapid move to software in the networking market and SPB is an evolution of MPLS allowing services to be created dynamically on the server where the applications reside or on the switches nearest the users.

This is one of the main benefits of SPB in-fact… It allows customers to simplify network creation and management by requiring service provisioning only at the edge of the network.

Alianza Wants to Host Your Software Telco

May 14, 2013

The software telco(r)evolution representing the move from hardware to software is perhaps the biggest trend in the world of carrier telecom this decade. Whenever we see such disruption in a market, it becomes an opportunity for new entrants to displace existing companies. As you may recall, Sonus Networks and Acme Packet (now Oracle) were just a few companies which were born and prospered during the transition from circuit to packet switched carrier networks.

In the past I have written about Metaswitch and their software telco solutions through NFV or network functions virtualization and their open-source Project Clearwater initiative which allows a carrier to run IMS on standard servers for free.

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