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Vonage

Roku: The Apple of TV?

May 21, 2008



Without a doubt, the new Netflix Player by Roku set top box will become a serious contender for the title "iPod of the world of television." I haven't seen this device yet but based on what I have read on Tom Keating's blog and on the New York Times, it is a killer offering.

Here are the details... A $100 set top box, a sub $10/month subscription and a web-based interface which helps you narrow down movie selections from a total of 10,000 Netflix offerings which are ultimately made by remote control.

At these price points some could be tempted to give up cable TV service altogether and if the box gains traction, it can become the TV delivery mechanism of the future -- worldwide.

I am not naive enough to think Roku will easily take over the world as Apple, Microsoft, the cable companies and phone companies will be looking to do everything short of hiring hitmen (is hitpersons more PC?).

Expect the box to eventually support YouTube, streaming TV and perhaps newer movies.

Really, everyone should be gunning for Roku except for content providers (including Yahoo! and Google) and chip manufacturers who can benefit from lower cost distribution and the sale of product to this consumer electronics company.

It is not hard to see Roku becoming a telephony provider in the future by upgrading these boxes with ATA functionality.

Expect this company to be included in net neutrality discussions of the future and if they aren't purchased in six months I will be very surprised. If Vonage had the finances or access to capital -- their brand would be a huge help in getting this box in millions of homes as fast as possible. They should consider a merger.

Then there is Google who could get broader YouTube penetration.

















CBS Picks up CNET

May 18, 2008

New WiMAX News Site

May 16, 2008




TMCnet grows daily with thousands of new news items and stories. As the site grows, we are always looking for ways to improve. One of these ways is to develop community pages which focus on a particular subject matter such as HD Voice, IP communications, IPTV, CRM and hosted communications or outbound call center.

Today we just announced TMCnet's WiMAX Today, a new site devoted to the WiMAX space. You probably already know TMCnet as a site which has more WiMAX news, information, opinion and analysis than any other site online.

Now you have a single place where you can go on the site to keep up with virtually every topic in this fast-growing wireless market.

I personally invite you to visit wimaxtoday.tmcnet.com for more.








Cablevision's WiFi Network in New York City

May 9, 2008



WiFi is not new and providing WiFi to a city is not new. What is new and worth noodling on is the fact Cablevision will soon have a WiFi network in New York City -- well over the next few years really.

The network will be voice-ready -- supporting WiFi telephony/VoWLAN and speeds could reach 1.5 Mbps.

Over the decades, Ethernet technology has always evolved to kill the competition. Although LTE and WiMax will be viable options, one wonders what would happen if WiFi continues to evolve -- like Ethernet to eventually cover more and more areas of the world.

Of course this scenario seems unlikely based on the fact that most companies haven't figured out how to make money in the WiFi ISP space. Still, it will be worth watching to see how this all plays out.

After all, I still don't have a WiMax or LTE radio in my cell phone or laptop.

See Also:















Vonage Record Quarter: Jeff Citron Interview

May 8, 2008

Vonage has done a great job this last quarter --  posting growth numbers in a slower economy. I just had a podcast interview with Jeffrey Citron where he talked about the company's growth rate and the number of new initiatives at the pure-play VoIP service provider.

Citron explains that they are pleased with their financial performance as their revenue was $225 million and this is a 15% increase from the previous year. One great bit of news is that expenses increased and adjusted operating income is now $8 million.

These results were ahead of expectations and in addition to the news on earnings, Citron was proud to explain how well-received his new  products have been. Visual voicemail and unlimited international calling are some of these new items.

Moreover, the company has a new prosumer product and another called Companion which installs on your computer and works in conjunction with your phone service.

Perhaps most importantly, Vonage is becoming a double-play provider by reselling Covad broadband DSL service.







Interop Bound and Thanks

April 27, 2008

Another year, another Interop. I am off once again across the country to Vegas where I will likely spend more time standing in line than I will sleeping. How amazing is the fact that you can build a city in the middle of nowhere and after fifty years get people from all over the world to come visit your city and spend their precious time waiting. Waiting to gamble; waiting to eat; waiting for a hotel room; waiting, waiting, waiting.

Thankfully I will have all my gadgets and gizmos and will continue to blog and email away while I wait, wait for everything.

Having said all that, although I do despise the cab line that comes with the Vegas airport I do like the fact that the airport is not too far from the strip and moreover, at least Vegas is closer to Connecticut than California is.

How is that for turning my lemons into lemonade?





PhoneTag, The New Simulscribe

April 25, 2008

Blackberry Voice Search

April 23, 2008

TellMe just launched a new application which allows people to use their Blackberry for voice search. utilizing the TellMe speech recognition engine and Microsoft Live Search, you can have search results automatically localized if you happen to have a GPS-enabled Blackberry.

This is a pretty big deal as it brings voice and local search together and shows where the search business is headed. It also shines light on what the real reason was for Microsoft to purchase Tellme. Not that any of us are surpised of course.

What might be worth discussion however is the fact that Microsoft would support RIM with an application which makes the Blackberry more attractive.



New TMCnet Record and New Writer

April 15, 2008

Thanks to our readers -- once again, TMCnet has hit a new record. In this case, we built a Global Online Community in conjunction with Interactive Intelligence and this community generated just under 600,000 page views in one month according to Webtrends, a company which measures web traffic.

As you might imagine, this is a staggering number of pages to be viewed in a month and after TMCnet, this number represents the most page views in a month out of all competitive sites worldwide. This is according to third party web measurement sites like Quantcast.

In other words a single community built on TMCnet outproduced any other single competitive site in total.

As I have promised before, as we grow we will ensure the quantity and quality of TMCnet articles and as such we recently added Rick Bye as a columnist. He wrote his first piece last week in fact.

Bye is a senior segment marketing manager with Zarlink and is responsible for leading the company’s residential gateway and consumer voice products development.







Target Service Provider Marketing by Pontis

April 14, 2008

At the recent CTIA show in Las Vegas, much of the talk centered around how service providers need to focus on generating revenue from advertising as companies like Google will be giving away many of the services they hope to charge for.

A good example of such a service is Google Maps which utilizes cellular tower triangulation to approximate GPS. It doesn't stop there of course… With Google Gears for Mobile, Google is in the enviable position of allowing mobile devices to utilize hosted applications whether or not there is a live internet connection.

It isn't news that Google has a head start in delivering services and advertising… Now carriers need to catch up.

But service providers are terrible at getting into new business areas and they have little experience in advertising. You know, that reads a bit harsh. Allow me to rephrase… Let's say instead, that if wireless carriers learned to sell advertising as well as they spend money on their own ads, they will be in great shape.

What is the first step in becoming a better advertising company?







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