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Tom Ridge to Speak at ITEXPO

December 21, 2005

I am looking forward to hearing Tom Ridge’s comments at the upcoming Internet Telephony Conference & Expo this month in Ft. Lauderdale Florida (January 24–27). Secretary Ridge will present his thoughts on a number of issues ranging from security to how we can effectively improve the state of 9-1-1 service in this country. The event will also feature an E-911/Regulation Summit, which is a must-attend for anyone interested in learning more about the pertinent regulatory issues facing VoIP companies today.

Some of the session titles that will be featured in Ft. Lauderdale include:

· VoIP’s Role in Military & First-Responder Communications;
· VoIP Regulatory Update; and
· E-911 Technical Session

These sessions will serve as an update on VoIP regulatory and compliance issues. Attendees can get up to speed on the latest situation regarding the support of CALEA, E-911, and taxation issues.







The E-911 Opportunity

December 20, 2005

Reprinted from the January 2006 issue of Internet Telephony Magazine.

In our company’s insider parlance, an opportunity is often a euphemism for a “problem.” This makes for some interesting turns of phrase when things go wrong and my colleagues approach me with, for example, a three-alarm opportunity. And yet sometimes an opportunity is just that: a chance to do some good, and maybe make some money while you’re at it. I recently spent some time with companies in Colorado, the heartland of this country’s 911 technology.

VoIP Predictions 2006

December 20, 2005

Reprinted from the January 2006 issue of Internet Telephony Magazine.

Here are some predictions for the future of VoIP:

Two Tiered Internet The FCC will continue to make life difficult for VoIP providers. In addition they will side with the LECs on a two-tiered Internet system meaning LECs will be able to block competitive content. For this, the Federal government will come down hard on Kevin Martin and in so doing reduce his ability to get anything accomplished in the FCC.

TV Wars
Cable companies and LECs will have brutal wars with one another about what rules the ILECs must follow to provide TV in areas where cable companies are dominant.


Top VoIP Investments/Trends

December 20, 2005

Reprinted from the January 2006 issue of Internet Telephony Magazine.


Last year in response to many requests I started a Top 10 investments list in which I outlined some of the best investments for 2005. Here is an update on last year’s list as well as some new additions. As a bonus I have added some top trends.

Peer to Peer
I led with P2P last year and lo and behold, two out of the three companies mentioned, Nimcat Networks and Skype were purchased for $46 million and over $2 billion respectively. P2P is still a super-hot market.



Iwatsu at ITEXPO

December 20, 2005

As the holidays approach us one cannot stop to think about how exciting the year is going to be in the VoIP space next year. I expect another record-setting year for the VoIP market. For example the number of announcements of new products and services expected at Internet Telephony Conference & Expo is staggering… Perhaps the most I have ever seen.

Here is one that was just sent to me:

Iwatsu Voice Networks to Feature Enterprise 2.0 Communications Server and New Platinum Series Terminals at Upcoming INTERNET TELEPHONY(R) Conference & EXPO East 2006 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

IRVING, TX -- (MARKET WIRE) -- 12/20/2005 -- Iwatsu Voice Networks (IVN) today announced they will have the latest version of their Enterprise Communications Server and new Platinum Series terminals on display at the TMC™ INTERNET TELEPHONY® Conference & EXPO East 2006. The conference will be held January 24-27, at the Broward County Convention Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.





Ron Insana

December 20, 2005

I just had a chance to speak with Ron Insana today and am very impressed with him. He really knows his stuff. If you aren’t aware, Mr. Insana is an anchor for CNBC and is one of the most well-known names in the investment/financial community.

Ron will be speaking at Internet Telephony Conference & Expo next month in Ft. Lauderdale Florida and we are delighted to have him be part of what promises to be the best ITEXPO ever produced. The attendees are coming in rapidly and we just can’t wait for the show and personally I just can’t wait to get out of the cold and thaw for a few days.

I am not a fan of winter so the ability to get out of the cold for a few days while learning from industry luminaries and at the same time talking with people deploying VoIP from all over the world is a chance I relish.



Sharing The WiFi Love

December 13, 2005

I live in a fairly secluded area and never bothered to encrypt my WiFi AP. I am just too far from anyone else to need to go through the hassle… Or so I thought. My Internet performance has been so degraded lately that I can barely work.

I have further had to reset the AP a few times in the past few days.

I noticed today that when I was looking at available wireless networks, another WiFi signal was coming into my house. I decided if I can see another AP then other people can see mine.



Blackberry Up To Their Neck

November 30, 2005

FCC to Cable: Offer Individual Channels

November 29, 2005

The big FCC news today is a Wall Street Journal story reporting that the commission will soon suggest that cable companies offer their channels individually. A recent FCC report says that consumers could save money if they have the ability to choose which channels they want. The FCC is also pushing for themed tiers of channels allowing a customer for example to opt for a family-friendly tier.

Of course the FCC is not able to impose its will on the cable industry but such suggestions could embolden politicians to follow up on these recommendations with laws.

The cable industry argues that if many viewers were to drop channels aimed for example at children, the cost for these channels would have to rise for other consumers. Furthermore it may be possible that less money is available for the programming of such channels.

The problem here is that the channels with less interest are being subsidized by others that people want.





Skype in the Enterprise

November 25, 2005

Two months ago, on September 26, 2005 I wrote an article titled VoIP Killed the PBX Star. This article received a tremendous amount of traffic and from what I am told was posted on quite a few PBX vendor intranets and became required reading at a number of communications companies. In the article I outlined various threats to PBX vendors and came up with ways to fight back.

One of the biggest threats I discussed was the establishment of enterprise Skype-like products. Coincidently, the day my article was posted, a company by the name of BlueNote Networks released what seems to be the first software designed to be like Skype for the enterprise.

Let's think about this for a moment.



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