Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
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| VoIP & Gadgets blog - Latest news in VoIP & gadgets, wireless, mobile phones, reviews, & opinions

IBM, Mitel, Wearable Tech round out Latest ITEXPO News

Its been an amazing ITEXPO so far - wow. In case you missed some of the happenings from day 1, here are...

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3 Reasons UC Deployments Fail

Just getting ink on a Unified Communications deal is just the beginning. So many deployments go wrong or worse the company...

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Small Cells are Key to Attracting and Keeping SMB and Large Enterprise Customers

By: Peter Bernstein, TMCnet Senior Editor

To say that operators of macro-cellular physical networks are facing all type of challenges these days would be an understatement.  These range from spectrum scarcity issues, competitive pricing pressures, the need to build out LTE networks ASAP as platforms for new services and to meet the insatiable appetite of users for things like streamed and real-time video, getting ready for the Internet of Things (IoT) etc.  They also are busy figuring out how to keep users, particularly enterprise users on their smart devices always and all ways on their networks in an increasingly fickle world where alternatives abound, including for value-added traffic lost to Over-the-Top (OTT) providers.  

It is to keep enterprise customers on the mobile service provider networks for enhanced services that good in-building wireless solutions are seen as both a powerful business tool and a competitive advantage.  This is particularly true when it comes to retaining small-to-medium business customers (SMBs).

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Changing the SIM game

The iPad Air 2 with Wi-Fi + Cellular models comes with a SIM  that “gives you the flexibility to choose from...

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WebRTC and the Enterprise

I was reading an article titled, “How WebRTC can serve the Enterprise” but when I originally saw the headline I thought...

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Jeff Pulver, Andy Abramson, Craig Walker, Alon Cohen, Mike Tribolet, Andy Voss and Danny Windham at ITEXPO Next Week

Panel to celebrate 20 years of IP communications/VoIP and discuss its future. Next week at the 29th ITEXPO, I get the pleasure...

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Alcatel-Lucent CEO Michel Combes on Importance of Bringing Ultra-Broadband to Africa

By: Peter Bernstein, TMCnet Senior Editor

It may be almost cliché to say we live in a global economy, but many times when globalization is discussed the focus is on developed and emerging markets and not that often, if at all, on under-developed regions.  In fact, in the past few years until the recent drop in oil prices, much of the financial community’s and economic development interests has been focused on the BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).  This leaves out not just most of South America, but the promising rest of Africa which contains a wealth of rare minerals and other natural resources waiting to be literally and figuratively mined.

However, for most of the African continent countries to move from under-developed status, along with toward political stability and having a educated citizenry, infrastructure needs to be in place which it currently is not. This means not just giving the populace access to clean water and energy, but in a digital world ubiquitous and affordable access to businesses and individuals to high-speed broadband communications is now not just a foundation but a pre-condition that is essential for moving ahead.  

In this regard it is enlightening, refreshing and significant that Alcatel-Lucent CEO Michel Combes recently wrote a corporate blog stressing the company’s interest in working with governments and commercial interests to help accelerate economic development across the continent.  This about not just about the Oscar winning movie of several years ago “Out of Africa”, but is also about around, into and across Africa. 

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Zangi - New Mobile VoIP Player in Town

November 18, 2013


Zangi is an interesting new mobile VoIP player. One of their espoused features is the free roaming which saves on international calls. While traveling many users purchase a new number (SIM card) to enjoy free incoming calls. Simply add this number under Zangi's “My z-Roamings” and all calls made via Zangi to your regular number will automatically be directed to your new “z-Roaming” number when you have no Internet connection.

Akkadian Labs Provisioning Manager Express (PME) Review

November 13, 2013

I thought my readers would enjoy my October Internet Telephony Magazine review of Akkadian Labs Provisioning Manager Express (PME), a powerful provisioning tool that aids in Cisco IP phone deployments. Enjoy!
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Last week your organization successfully implemented a new IP based Unified Communication system. The vendor is closing out the final issues and providing your staff with a few hours of training. This is a great achievement and all the new features will have a very positive impact on the user community, but what about ongoing operations?

Next month you have twenty new hires, not to mention the additional features you plan to deploy.




Skype Ends Desktop API. Now What?

November 4, 2013


I launched Skype this morning and was greeted with a warning message that caused me some alarm (screenshot above). It appears a major API used by third-parties to integrate with Skype is ending in just one month. That gives virtually no time for developers to code new software to ensure their headsets, cameras, etc. work properly with Skype.

Asterlook - "The CTI Asterisk Client for Outlook" Launches

October 31, 2013


A new software Asterlook, what they're calling "the CTI Asterisk client for Outlook", was just released allowing you to manage incoming and outgoing calls directly in Outlook. According to the feature list, it works with any flavor of Asterisk. On an inbound call a toast popup appears showing the contact name and the phone number.

You can also make outbound calls directly from Outlook due to the TAPI TSP installed. Oh and if you have TAPI dialing issues, check out my popular post on solving TAPI problems.


AT&T TL7910 DECT 6.0 Headset Review

October 30, 2013


The AT&T TL7910 DECT 6.0 headset is one of the best combo PC/phone headsets you can buy with some pretty powerful features. With the AT&T Softphone Call Manager software it supports Skype, and Microsoft Lync, and can even import your Outlook contacts. Back in 2009 I reviewed the AT&T TL7610 DECT headset, which looks almost identical to the TL7910, but looks can be deceiving - the TL7910 hides some pretty cool new features. I decided to take the TL7910 DECT headset for a spin, so enjoy the full review along with a YouTube video demo below...


The first thing of note is the secure magnetic charging cradle, which makes it easy to charge the headset.



Dot-com and VoIP Explosion - Is WebRTC Next?

October 24, 2013

Some exciting news from my company, TMC, to report. TMC, Systemwide Media and PKE Consulting announced today that Google has signed on to be a Diamond Sponsor at WebRTC Conference & Expo III. The event, held November 19-21, 2013, in Santa Clara, Calif., explores how WebRTC is set to transform the way we communicate by enabling true browser-to-browser communications. The event caters to enterprises, service providers, Web providers, investors, developers and more.

WebRTC is just starting to hit its stride, but early enough for companies to jump on the WebRTC bandwagon before it leaves them behind.

AstriCon Keynote Photos

October 10, 2013

AstriCon 2013 Atlanta - Photos!

October 9, 2013

FreePBX High Availability Project Launches at AstriCon

October 9, 2013



At AstriCon, Schmooze Com Inc., maintainers and core developers of the FreePBX project today announced a High Availability version of FreePBX called FreePBX HA. I'm a huge fan of FreePBX, and have deployed it, so I'm pretty excited about this new high availability feature.

Until October 15th they are offering a pre-release special of FreePBX HA that includes two node licenses for $1,500, which is a 50% discount! Pre-release buyers will also receive access to private BETA releases and HA development team conference calls.

Schmooze redesigned the FreePBX platform to integrate HA utilizing DRBD, Cluster Manager and Pacemaker. This enables automatic mirroring and failover between FreePBX nodes.





AstriCon 2013 Keynote Panel [VIDEO]

October 9, 2013


This morning the first keynote kicked off featuring some well-respected Asterisk thought leaders and experts. They included Asterisk founder, Chairman & CTO Mark Spencer, Alistair Cunningham the Founder & General Manager, Integrics, Olle E. Johansson, Founder & President, Edvina AB, Philippe Lindheimer, FreePBX Project Leader and CTO, Schmooze Com, Inc., Schmooze Com, Inc.

The room was packed and the keynote panelists were moderated by Digium's David Duffett who posed some great questions. I pretty much captured the entire keynote, but did stop the 1st video at the 18 minute mark, since I was worried my mobile phone was running out of storage space and didn't want the video to be corrupted. I immediately kicked off the 2nd video, however.


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