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Tom Keating
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Nuance Brings Artificial Intelligence to the Omnichannel World

The robots aren’t coming, they are here is all I could think of today as I mulled over my notes from a...

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NFV Vendor Challenges Part 2

How will the software in NFV networks interact? Via a Management and Orchestration (MANO) layer.

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Rapport Open APIs Increase Employee Productivity

By: Richard Hatheway, Director, Enterprise Communications Product Marketing, Rapport for Large Enterprise, Alcatel-Lucent

What is one of the biggest factors affecting employee productivity today? Recent studiesby the National Business Research Institute and the Pew Research Center indicate that not having the right technology tools to do their jobs is one of the most critical. From something as simple as having a cell phone to as advanced as having a customized app, having the right tool provides employees with a productivity boost.

Unfortunately though, many large enterprises are unable to take advantage of advances in technology due to old or outdated infrastructure and ICT technology silos. In addition, being locked in to one technology vendor often stymies the enterprise from being able to update the tools necessary to increase employee productivity.

For instance, something as simple as developing and deploying a new app is often a frustrating experience, as the enterprise must submit a request to the technology vendor for a new app to be developed, then wait until the vendor adds it to their development queue before finding out when to expect it. This often takes months, if not longer.

In the meantime, instead of waiting for the new app, many employees take the “shadow IT” route. They download rogue (i.e., non-IT-supported) apps that will allow them to move forward with at least some of the functionality they seek, even without IT support. While this work-around may provide some degree of productivity enhancement for the employee, wouldn’t it be better if the enterprise was able to either plug in existing best-of-breed third-party apps or develop and deploy its own apps without having to wait for a vendor to become involved?

Alcatel-Lucent thinks so, which is one of the reasons our new solution, Rapport™ for Large Enterprise, is generating so much interest. Rapport is a private cloud-based communications and collaboration solution designed specifically for the large enterprise.

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Versay Solutions Moves to Support the Omnichannel World

A company known for professional services in the contact center – Chicago-based Versay Solutions has more recently applied its skills in analytics...

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Splice Software Uses the Power of Analytics to Expand its Product Line

Big data and analytics have had a huge impact on numerous spaces and certainly marketing is one of these areas. Perhaps the...

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Jet.com The .Good the .Bad and the .Ugly

The .GoodI’ve been using Jet.com for a few weeks and so far I have found the selection to be about 20-30% of...

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VoicePIN Voice Biometrics Brings New Tech to Phone and Apps

The biometrics market has been around for decades but never achieved widespread acceptance until after Apple rolled out TouchID. Laptop makers...

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Fongo Adds Free Texting to Dell Voice

September 18, 2012


Dell and their partner Fongo just released a new version of their Dell Voice mobile app with free unlimited Fongo Messaging, unlimited text messaging (SMS), voice quality & stability improvements, and lower data usage. I voiced my skepticism in a post back in February that this joint venture would succeed. I'm still a bit skeptical, however, I do think if someone is going to offer something for "free", then it could entire users to try it out.  They also give you a free phone number and will even port your existing phone number for $25.

Gartner's 'Magic Quadrant for UC' - Cisco Bests Microsoft - Not!

September 11, 2012

Gartner recently posted their Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications along with their analysis of the UC market. As always Gartner's research is a fascinating and insightful read, but I do take slight issue where they positioned Cisco and Microsoft. First let's take a look at the Magic Quadrant:

You will see that Cisco and Microsoft are nearly touching one another and the top two companies within the Magic Quadrant, but Cisco slightly beats Microsoft in both the "leaders" and "visionaries" categories. I don't take issue with Cisco in the "leaders" category, since clearly Cisco has been doing enterprise VoIP, video conferencing and indeed UC longer than Microsoft with many more deployments.

I do however take issue with Cisco beating Microsoft in the "visionaries" category.



Kindle Fire HD Awesomeness!

September 6, 2012


The all new Kindle Fire sports a faster processor, double the memory, and 40% faster performance - at $159. Is Amazon CEO Steve Bezos insane? That's a ridiculously low price, but if anyone can subsidize a tablet with paid content it's Amazon.com. Bezos said Amazon wants to produce "the best tablet any price."

CloudTC Glass 1000 Android IP Phone Adds New Features

September 5, 2012


Peter Radizeski informed me that CloudTC has a new software update for their Android-based Glass 1000 IP phone, which adds some nice new features. I'm in the process of testing/reviewing the Glass 1000 so I'm going to have to download the latest firmware and try out the new features.

The newest Glass Phone Software Release 2.3.3 adds Bluetooth headset and Handsfree Profiles support. The Glass platform can now support replaceable third-party phone apps via the Glass VoIP Phone API. You can now create your own telephony UI to distinguish your offering.


OBi202 Review

August 31, 2012


Obihai's line of VoIP products that allow users to BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) instead of being locked to specific VoIP hardware has made Obihai a hit with fans of BYOD. Further, Obihai's analog telephone adapter (ATA) products offer both SIP and Google Voice connectivity making it a very versatile device choice to host your various phone service providers. Obihai's products can even give you FREE unlimited phone minutes to anywhere in the U.S. by leveraging Google Voice's 100% free calling.

Obihai sent me the OBi202 and the new OBiBT Bluetooth adapter for a review and I have to say I was very impressed.


Gadget Lovers Rejoice! AAA Battery Delivery!

August 29, 2012

Have you ever had a gadget or toy stop working because the batteries died? Of course you have. Worse, have you or Santa Claus forgotten to include batteries in the Christmas stockings to be used with the various children's toys and games? If you've ever had to experience your own child with those sad, sullen eyes looking up at you in disappointment because they cannot play with their newfangled toy on Christmas, you know it is not a fun feeling.

Making a battery run on Christmas is no fun and most stores are closed.

Google Pimps Nexus 7 tablet on Google home page

August 28, 2012


Rich Tehrani discovered that Google is pimping their Nexus 7 tablet on Google's home page which is renowned for being advertising-free. The Nexus 7 (built by Asus) is the first tablet developed under Google, and is the first device to run Android 4.1 / Jelly Bean, the latest version of Google's mobile operating system. Considering the Samsung (Android) $1+ billion defeat to Apple, perhaps Google who has a huge stake in Android is flipping the bird to Apple.

Google to Apple: "You think you got massive eyeballs viewing iPhones and iPads? Well watch this!


New Samsung Series 7 & Series 5 All-in-One PCs Feature Windows 8 & Gesture Recognition

August 28, 2012


Samsung today unveiled the Series 7 and Series 5 computers which are all-in-one PCs running Windows 8 with a touch-screen and gesture recognition. The Series 7 will be available in 23" and 27" versions, both of which utilize a 1080p touchscreen. It includes a small keyboard, which can be tucked under the display's metal stand saving on desk space. The 23" Series 7 runs a Core i5 CPU with 6GB of RAM, 1TB of storage and Intel Graphics 4000.

24's Jack Bauer Bakes Explosive Cupcakes for Hilarious Acer Aspire S5 Ultrabook Ad

August 22, 2012

How to install Windows Media Center in Windows 8 Pro RTM

August 21, 2012


If you're wondering how to install Windows Media Center in Windows 8 Pro RTM, you've come to the right place. After installing Windows 8 Pro RTM using a MSDN / TechNet key I noticed Windows Media Center was gone. I use Windows Media Center for DVR, Photo Gallery, Netflix, Hulu, Home videos, playing ripped Blu-ray .iso movie images, and more - all connected to my 55" TV over HDMI. Then I remembered reading about how Microsoft was trying to keep the licensing costs of Windows 8 down and one way was by not licensing various codecs, as they explained here:
Our partners have shared clear concerns over the costs associated with codec licensing for traditional media playback, especially as Windows 8 enables an unprecedented variety of form factors.


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