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ID Needed for ITEXPO

January 16, 2007

Please make sure to bring a valid ID – passport, driver’s license, etc to ITEXPO next week. The expo takes place at the port. Yes that is where the convention center is. Homeland Security requires valid identification to get into the convention center.

Communications in 2007

January 16, 2007

Any look at the future of any industry would not be complete without analysis of recent events. In the case of communications, 2006 seems like the transitional year of all time for a number of reasons. Next week, Jan 23-26 marks this year’s first continental US communications trade show, Internet Telephony Conference & Expo in Ft. Lauderdale, Fl. This article is intended to set up the debates and discussions that will take place during this event.   Money   There is more money floating around in this and every other market than at any time during recent memory. As long as the money keeps flowing, the transformation and consolidation of the communications industry will continue to take place.

First ITEXPO East ’07 News

January 11, 2007

Florida is on Sale for ITEXPO!

January 8, 2007

  It is not too late to book your flights to ITEXPO   I just went to Expedia and checked the airfares for the upcoming Internet Telephony Conference & Expo coming up in a few weeks. Boy was I surprised. I have never seen such low fares just two weeks from any show. And this is with no Saturday night stay requirement.

VoIP Changes the Lives of Disabled Veterans

January 5, 2007

Many people know how VoIP has changed lives and how it has allowed communications to take place among people who previously could not afford to communicate. Voice over IP is obviously disruptive but at the same time it has changed the world in many ways. We know about cost savings and how service provider business models have evolved over the years but we have not seen enough media attention on how VoIP is changing lives by enabling people who could not previously be employed to finally get jobs.   There are hundreds of thousands of disabled veterans in the world and in these distinguished American citizens are often unable to contribute to the workforce because they aren’t able to commute to a job.   In May of last year I wrote about how call centers are changing lives and specifically about the excellent work Ken Smith is doing as Program Manager at the Military Order of the Purple Heart (MOPH).   Here is a refresher from the above article:   In November of 2005, the Military Order of the Purple Heart Service Foundation or MOPHSF started its first class of 15 disabled, combat wounded veterans in an online call center training program called Veterans Business Training Center or VBTC.

This training was 15-weeks, 600-hours long and focused on the Five9 dialing platform. As it turns out, Five9 gave this agency very favorable rates for their service and they should be commended for doing so.

The foundation allowed the trainees to use this platform to call prospect donors on behalf of the foundation to solicit contributions in the state of Virginia.



Channels

January 4, 2007

One of the fastest growing areas of TMCnet is the channels program which are micro-communities of interest. These channels focus on so many topics I can’t list them all but a few of the more recent ones are here for your perusal. The span virtually every area of communications and they are to me the future of the internet. Why?

Natural Convergence

January 3, 2007

About ten years ago I was waiting to be seated at a restaurant when a man came to the area in which I was waiting and started to open the vending machines. He had a few empty sacks with him and after about five minutes had filled the sacks with money. It was at this point I realized the value of making small amounts of money in massive volume. I figured if it can be done with gumballs you can do it with anything.   After a recent meeting with David Cork the CEO at Natural Convergence I think telecom holds another vending machine opportunity service providers are wise to pay attention to.

TMCnet Redesign

January 3, 2007

Today is a pretty big day for me personally. As you know, TMCnet is the world’s leading site for communications and technology information, community building, etc. In fact this past December 2006 saw our traffic reach just under 2 million unique visitors. Our previous record was just over one million.   This is a number unheard of in the competitive space in which we play and we are proud of this fact.   So while our site is not only successful it continues to shine, we knew it also was a busy site.

Sir Terry Matthews

January 3, 2007

Terry Matthews is a living legend in communications and I suppose the only person I will get to meet with a “Sir” in front of their name. For years many people have told me I must meet Terry and for one reason or another we just never connected. Over the years Terry has started 66 companies and only 3 have been unsuccessful meaning they were subsequently rolled back into other companies in the “Matthews family.”.   We often hear of serial entrepreneurs but what separates Terry from virtually all others is his staggering success rate. He not only starts companies at a rapid pace he starts companies that succeed.

The AT&T/BellSouth/FCC Soap Opera

January 2, 2007

The AT&T BellSouth merger has gained FCC approval after AT&T decided to make some concessions and many are hailing this as a win for net neutrality. Below are some of the recent articles – a massive amount for a telecom merger --  I found on TMCnet regarding this soap opera of a merger:     Most of the articles have a positive spin but at least one critic of this merger is Dave Burstein at DSL Prime who thinks AT&T's net neutrality concession has no meaning. Why?   According to Dave this seemingly innocuous later sentence -- following the 2-year net neutrality pledge -- effectively makes it almost meaningless.   “This commitment also does not apply to AT&T/BellSouth's Internet Protocol television (IPTV) service.” AT&T has always intended to give paying customers priority by routing them over the “IPTV” part of their network, with Alcatel routers and Microsoft software designed for QOS.   Basically AT&T says it won't favor one type of traffic on its network over another -- the essence of net neutrality, it then adds this statement that negates their concession.   Many fear service providers will favor some services over others and also restrict competition with pricing which makes it prohibitive to launch a new service that in any way competes with a service provider offering.   After all, would YouTube have stood a chance if they had the service providers stacking the deck against them from the beginning?
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