Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
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VoLTE Versus WebRTC: I didn't know it was a battle

When I talk to customers, they often ask about how WebRTC compares to voice over LTE (VoLTE), and which technology “will...

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These 3 Do Everything Together

At a few shows, including the latest ITEXPO, the 3 big cablecos - TWC, Comcast and Charter - share a booth....

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Modems? In This Day and Age?

Not so many years ago, the only way to connect to the Internet was via a modem. You would use your...

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How to Speed Small Cell Site Acquisition on a Large Scale

By: Jean Jones, Director, Wireless Marketing, Alcatel-Lucent

Outdoor small cells are now widely recognized as a great solution for expanding mobile capacity and coverage. And their use is expected to grow sevenfold by 2018.[1] So here’s the next big question: How can you put these cells where they’re needed, faster and at lower cost?

Maybe you’ve already encountered deployment issues, including difficulties with small cell site acquisition. According to an Informa Telecoms & Media survey, nearly 60% of mobile operators say that deployment problems are their biggest small cell challenge.[2] In other words, operators’ top concerns are not about small cell technologies or products. Instead, they’re about the practical aspects of getting these cells up and running on light posts, utility poles, bus stops, buildings and other street locations.

This blog looks at a collaborative approach that makes these deployment processes faster and easier. Alcatel-Lucent adopted these methods for our Metro Cell Express Site Certification Program. And we’re discussing them here, because this business model earned a top award in the small cell innovation leadership category.

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HumansFirst ColdSmoke Lets You Buy with your Smartphone

While speech-technology has come a long way, we still haven’t entered the world of Star Trek reruns where the computer can do...

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Structural Separation via REIT Equals Zero Taxes

Windstream got the endorsement of the IRS to transfer their assets - copper and fiber plant - to a REIT and...

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Connected Cars as an Everyday Lifestyle

By: Ellis Lindsay, General Manager, Customer Experience Solutions, Alcatel-Lucent 

I drive to work and back home in my car every day. I tune in to a radio station for traffic news and upcoming events nearby. Like many of you I’m sure, this is a typical everyday activity. And like never before, we are connected to our home, our families, our phones, our work and our friends in a network that seems to be always on. Shouldn’t we be in a lifestyle where we are consistently connected to the everyday activities in our lives? Well, let me introduce you to the world of Connected Cars. Full Story »

Logitech ConferenceCam CC3000e Video Conferencing for SMB Review

March 14, 2014

Logitech, a leader in USB-based computer peripherals is targeting their new Logitech ConferenceCam CC3000e towards the SMB, which cannot afford $50,000+ telepresence video systems, but is looking for something a step up from a webcam for conference room based video conferencing.

The Logitech ConferenceCam CC3000e is easy to setup with everything clearly numbered and labeled so you know how to make all the connections. Since it uses USB you can use your favorite UC or Web conferencing application, including Microsoft Lync, Skype, Vidyo, and Cisco. The CC3000e has a remote control for changing the camera angle including left/right and up/down movements. You can do incremental movements with single presses of a certain direction or you can press and hold for faster movement, which was very smooth.

TransCertain CertainSafe Review - 2014

February 19, 2014

You may have seen my 2013 review of TransCertain's CertainSafe product, a cloud-based file sharing platform. Well, I decided to take a look at their newer version which was published in the 1st quarter issue of Cloud Computing. Here's my full unedited copy in all its glory, which differs slightly from the magazine's version. Enjoy!

There is no shortage of cloud-based file sharing solutions on the market, such as Box, Dropbox, or Skydrive, which are very popular with consumers.


Jumper Card - The Swiss Army Knife of Portable Chargers

February 10, 2014

The Jumper Card is a very unique portable charger that meets just about every portable charger requirement - it's small/portable, it has decent power for its size, and it sports multiple connector types, including MicroUSB, Apple's Lightning, and iPhone 30-pin connectors. Launched on Indiegogo, the founder Eli Regalado sent me a review unit to check out.

Looking at the Jumper Card from the top with the connectors popped out, sporting 3 different connection types, you can see why I call this the "Swiss Army Knife" of portable chargers:


It measures 3.54 x 2.24 x 0.25 inches. By comparison, a credit card is 3.34 x 2.12 x 0.030 inches. So how well would this do in a wallet?




Interesting Tidbits from ITEXPO

January 30, 2014

Cisco quietly let go 50 engineers and other people responsible for their low-cost SPA line of desktop IP phones (SPA300, SPA500, etc.) - I believe back in November. The IP phones targeted the SMB and I'm told it's a $600 million business for Cisco that Cisco just decided to let go to focus on the "enterprise". Must be nice to say no to $600 million! They're still selling the SPA line of products (and may even still be manufacturing them), but there is no more development on the SPA line of IP phones.

Midokura Virtualizes Your Network to the Cloud

January 29, 2014


I met with Midokura, a company founded in Japan, in the press room at ITEXPO to learn about their network virtualization solution. Midokura offers IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) for both public and private cloud. They plug into Openstack / CloudStack / vSphere and can run them in a distributed software environment. midokura's Adam Johnson, General Manage explained how Midokura Midokura came about.

HiperPBX Bridges M2M and PBX Creating "Industrial Unified Communications"

January 29, 2014

HiperPBX's Gustavo Scheveloff, Sales Director gave me an introduction of HiperPBX at ITEXPO Miami 2014. Their solution is unique in that it's a VoIP PBX that not only features Unified Communications (UC), but it also sports some interesting M2M features. They have developed a software industrial module and defined a new concept - "Industrial Unified Communications", which leverages M2M.

It leverages mobile TCP & SNMP for monitoring devices, routers, switches and can send SMS, make a phone call or send an email if a machine has an error. In industrial environments it can be useful to monitor high temperature, humidity, switch not responding, machine under heavy load.

Digium's Billy Chia Opens Asterisk 1-2-3 Session to Packed Room

January 28, 2014

Logitech ConferenceCam CC3000e Video Conferencing Targets SMB

January 27, 2014

According to Frost and Sullivan in 2013 that said, "We believe that globally there are 60-70 million physical conference rooms. We estimate that about 5% of these are penetrated with video conferencing capabilities." A big part of the reason for such low penetration is the cost of room-based video conferencing systems, which can be hundeds of thousands of dollars for high-end telepresence systems. Many businesses simply get by with traditional audioconferencing "UFO-shaped" phones in board rooms due to the high cost of videoconferencing systems. Logitech, a leader in USB-based computer peripherals aims to change that with the new Logitech ConferenceCam CC3000e, which is launching today.

Schmooze Com Showcasing FreePBX HA Appliances at ITEXPO

January 15, 2014


With ITEXPO just around the corner (January 28-31st) in Miami, companies are already announcing their wares that they'll showcase at this premiere communications tradeshow. One of my favorite VoIP solutions is FreePBX, so I'm excited to check out the new FreePBX High Availability (HA) Appliances that Schmooze Com, Inc. will be showcasing.

Check out the news below & make sure you attend ITEXPO...

Schmooze Com, Inc. and maintainers of FreePBX, the world’s leading Open Source PBX platform, announced today that it has added two new FreePBX High Availability Appliance solutions to it’s line of FreePBX Appliances. FreePBX Appliances are certified hardware solutions specifically designed to support and run FreePBX.  The SMB HA Appliance is designed to target businesses with up to 75 users/extensions, and the Xtreme HA Appliance Bundle will support installations with up to 350 extensions.





AT&T Syn248 Review

January 15, 2014


The AT&T Syn248 is a new Do It Yourself (DIY) IP-based phone system that supports up to 8 analog lines and 24 phones (hence the Syn248 naming), which truly hits the SMB sweet spot. I was intrigued that AT&T was offering a corporate PBX, considering most carriers in the past didn’t sell CPE-based PBXs and instead sold Centrex (hosted) and now currently sell cloud-based VoIP into the SMB space, that certainly piqued my interest. I requested an evaluation kit to review the AT&T Syn248. I was sent one of their 4-port 1U SB35010 gateways/PBXs, which can be expanded to 8-ports simply by adding a second 4-port gateway to reach the 8 port maximum.  

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