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Technology

GENBAND Enables Carriers to Take On Silicon Valley

April 18, 2017

In 2010, we told you Genband has become a mini Alcatel-Lucent for all practical purposes and we couldn't help thinking of this, almost a decade later as we sat, discussing the latest happenings at the company. GENBAND is actually not only a company delivering hardware and software, they have become a cloud-enabler for carriers worldwide. For example, Deutsche Telekom has a consumer app based on Kandy.

Who is GENBAND today? They are becoming the ultimate enabler of carrier communications solutions.

New Flowroute Customer Onboarding Platform Lubricates CSP Porting

April 17, 2017



Smoothly and effectively onboarding new enterprises is one of the most significant operational challenges for cloud communications providers. Flowroute is aiming squarely at helping these companies deliver an excellent experience for companies migrating to their services.

In a recent meeting with Dan Nordale and Dave Rich, they told me they asked themselves, "Why is it so easy to get a gmail account but not so easy to get telecom configured for business?"

And thus the Flowroute mission was born.

The company helps its customers in the following ways:

  • Onboarding API: Through an Onboarding API, Flowroute helps communication service providers manage the lifecycle of customer onboarding, from order submission to completion.
  • Bulk port orders: Gives CSPs the ability to create and manage thousands of port orders at once through the its web-based application.
  • Real-time event updates: Provides end-users access to the entire onboarding journey, including real-time messages from Flowroute’s number and porting experts.
  • Number feature automation: Enables automated configuration of CNAM, E911, call routing and name assignments during onboarding.
  • Quality Control: Sends automated verifications to confirm phone number transition through NPAC, the National Portability Administration Center.
The most impactful statement made in the interview "90% of enterprises run their PBX inside a firewall." It will flip in five years. Meaning we ar going from UC to UCaaS.

And as enterprises move to the cloud, Flowroute is trying to take away the pain of delayed ports and minimize the exposure customers have to tech issues.

By automating and approving onboarding, they help carriers expand their product sets as they no longer need to focus as much on these areas.



















Konftel Goes BIG and small in Conferencing

April 16, 2017


The BIG news from Konftel is they hope to solve the huge headache most people experience when trying to set up the conference phone in a meeting. How? The Konftel 300IPx (we will refer to this as hardware) and Konftel Unite mobile app (we will refer to this as software) work together so a single click is all it takes to join a meeting.

Many of us techies have in-car navigation which could costs thousands of dollars yet we prefer an app - Google Maps, Waze, etc. This is the same idea but the 300IPx does have a small screen as well if you want to use it.



We had a recent discussion with Torbjörn Karlsson and Stefan Eriksson and they told us all about the solution and how it works.

The hardware has NFC, allowing a quick connection with your phone - unless it's an iPhone, because Apple has decided the masses don't need NFC at the moment. 








CounterPath Bria-X Delivers Cost-Effective UCaaS Solution

April 16, 2017

In the 1990s Novell had a lock on servers in the enterprise. There was no Linux but SCO UNIX and IBM's AIX were the closest thing we had. Microsoft owned the desktop and parlayed their desktop position to oust Novell and rule not only desktops but servers.

This is what I thought of when I met with Todd Carothers of CounterPath. The company pretty much dominates the SIP soft-client space on mobile devices. 



Now, as companies are moving to UCaaS, CounterPath sees an opportunity to parlay their strength in mobile software into a complete package.





Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise Rainbow Powers Digital Transformation

April 15, 2017



Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise is making progress becoming a communications enabler and thereby an enabler of digital transformation via Open Rainbow, their "enterprise Whatsapp" solution which allows a company to customize communications solutions for various markets.

We first covered it in 2016 and there are now 40-50 low-level APIs allowing integration with applications in hospitality - room service for example, retail and more.



Moreover, the company tells us their solution is superior to OTT solutions such as social networks as the customer relationship stays within the control of your organization. Also, with routing, scheduling and communications control - you can be sure you're on the right side of various regulations which your industry may have to comply with.

The company's "no-memory APIs" allow fully anonymized calling for solutions which require such privacy. For example public services in France...

Will the FCC Ban Talking on Flights Next?

April 11, 2017

We realize this is a controversial topic as many people didn't want internet on flights, let alone calling. Having said that, Your's Truly has turned on WiFi Calling on his phone and does occasionally talk in the iPhone mid-flight. The connection isn't usually that great and it is very difficult to hear with all the background noise from the engines. Also - because the upload speed is generally severely limited, the other party will often be challenged to hear you clearly.

The minor inconvenience fellow passengers face from a nearby phone call is certainly far less than noise generated by people talking around you.

Stupid Mistakes Lead to Kelihos Botnet Spam Lord Arrest

April 11, 2017

Russian Pyotr Levashov spread ransomware and other malicious software through the Kelihos botnet, possibly hacked the U.S. election and probably ran the Waledac spam botnet.

In 2009, Levashov was charged with operating the notorious Storm botnet, Kelihos’ predecessor. According to anti-spam organization Spamhaus, Levashov is listed as one of the World’s 10 Worst Spammers and “one of the longest operating criminal spam-lords on the internet”.

How did he get caught? Levashov was arrested in Barcelona, Spain under a U.S.



FreeConferenceCall.com Adds Enterprise Support

April 9, 2017


Getting workers these days to adopt the technology the company mandates is a bit like telling your children to eat their veggies. The only way to make it happen is to use reverse psychology and even then, they typically eat (or adopt) what they want.

This is why it makes so much sense for FreeConferenceCall.com to take their 800,000 business user accounts and allow them to "grow up" by adding admin control.

In other words, they have won the bottom-up war, now its time to attack the top down.

The company's CEO David Erickson told me they are now focusing on enterprises - their current international offering supports 60 countries. and will grow. They all use VoIP, support HD voice and are integrated with the PSTN.

They also have multifeed viceo with picture-in-picture, allowing up to 1,000 people on an audio or video call.








New 8x8 Communications Cloud Enables Digital Transformation

April 9, 2017

Bryan Martin of 8x8 told us the company's new Communications Cloud is analogous to the other clouds companies have in place - marketing and sales for example. The service combines UC, collaboration, contact center and analytics into a single streamlined package.



The company's Team Collaboration is an open solution connecting to other communications platforms such as Slack and Hipchat - allowing them to interoperate. Bryan tells us they can connect 50 of these services together. 

The openness angle is a very interesting one - is it better to be connected to all the various solutions on the market or try to acquire one of your own and lock customers in?





CafeX Chime Shows How Communications Enables Digital Transformation

April 9, 2017

There is is a nonstop movement from traditional communications and UC players to add value to their applications and services. It reminds us a great deal of what is happening with communications service providers - they had been trying for years to add value to their connections so as not to be considered dumb pipes. The latest move in this direction is AT&T offering HBO free in some of its service packages.

In a recent meeting with Sajeel Hussain of CafeX - we got a glimpse of what the evolution of UC and collaboration could be. CafeX has a service called Chime (PDF)- not to be confused with the more recent Amazon Chime service by the same name - which by the way, spurred a lawsuit from CafeX.

Hussain describes it as business-focused, outcome-driven pervasive collaboration with customer engagement.



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