Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
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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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Google Desktop Search

October 15, 2004

Verizon and Level3 VoIP feature

October 15, 2004

I just blogged about i2Telecom's "Cellular Bridge" feature that let's you pick up your cell phone, dial the i2Telecom InternetTalker, and the device will recognize your CallerID and give you "2nd dial-tone" to dial another phone number.

Well, coincidentally, a source has just told me that Level3 and Verizon are working on a similar feature that will let you dial your home VoIP phone (Verizon's VoiceWing VoIP service I assume), it will detect the CallerID, give you 2nd dialtone, and then let you make an outbound call.

Apparently it will only cost $0.12 PER CALL! (not per minute.) I'm not sure if this is U.S.

i2Telecom InternetTalker MG-3

October 15, 2004


The InternetTalker is another ATA (analog telephony adaptor) device that works in conjunction with i2Telecom's VoIP network services.

While there seems to be a new ATA coming to market every week, what I like about this ATA is a feature they call "Cellular Bridge".

Here is what their website had to say, Cellular Bridge Brings VoIP Savings to Mobile Phones. Exclusive, patented “cellular bridge” capability allows up to 3 authorized phones to remotely access the MG-3 for low-cost and no-cost global calling.

FCC Fiber Decision for the Bells

October 15, 2004

I was watching the news last night when the news anchor stated that an FCC ruling came down that the FCC had granted the regional Bell companies relief from having to lease their fiber networks to competitors at regulated rates. I was stunned considering how supportive FCC chairman Michael Powell has been in the past with regards to competition. He’s especially been a friend and proponent of competition in the VoIP industry, so this decision came as a surprise to me. It smelled to me like some serious Baby Bell lobbying paid off.

Skype phone

October 15, 2004

IPMind

A representative of IPMind came across my VoIP blog entry "Skype Keynote", saw that I "wished" for "a phone product with Skype technology embedded that DOES NOT REQUIRE a PC to be on to work!" and he posted a comment stating that his company has a prototype of a standalone Skype hardware phone.

Details are a bit sketchy at this point, but here is what I know. They have 2 early prototypes enclosed in a telephone shell that can dial to/receive calls from Skype users. For dialing you simply scroll to the desired buddy in the buddy list on the LCD screen (4*20) and you are connected to the buddy.

CuPhone and Skype

October 14, 2004

CuPhone Personal Phone Gateway (PPG)

Andy reminded me of a company that creates a USB portable gateway device that actually won an Internet Telephony Editors' Choice Award in 2000. Well, now they support Skype and in an interesting way.

Basically, this device connects to your PC (via USB) as well as a PSTN wall socket. Then you enter in a pre-specified PSTN phone number, such as a cell phone number into the CuPhone Personal Phone Gateway (PPG).

Red Sox or Yankees Evil Empire

October 13, 2004

Last night I watched the Yankees vs. Red Sox ALCS playoff game, including the pre-game on FOX. I enjoyed the Nomar, Goat Curse, and Bartman parody - it was pretty funny. But what really irked me about the pre-game was the intro just before the game started where they equated the Yankees as the "Evil Empire".

Audiovox SMT5600

October 13, 2004

Audiovox SMT5600

I'm in the market for a smartphone - preferably one with Bluetooth, Windows Mobile software, GPS capability, and email access that can rival a Blackberry. The HP h6315 has certainly seen some hype and a lot of interest. No doubt the new Audiovox SMT5600 smartphone will make some waves with its powerful features. The SMT5600 runs Windows Mobile 2003 for Smartphones Second Edition on a 200 MHz Texas Instruments OMAP processor.

AT&T CallVantage and TigerDirect

October 13, 2004

AT&T CallVantage Service is now available through TigerDirect. TigerDirect joins Amazon.com, Best Buy and Circuit City in the retail channel to market CallVantage's VoIP services. What about Walmart? Whoever (Vonage, CallVantage, Lingo, etc.) lands Walmart deserves some extra kudos.

Popular Telephony and Global IP Sound

October 13, 2004

Popular Telephony and Global IP Sound have announced a partnernership to provide best-in-class voice quality on Peerio 444 serverless softphone. I've used Global IP Sound's GIPS codecs and they are very impressive. I gave Global IP Sound a glowing review in a TMC Labs writeup last year, which you can see here: Global IP Sound TMC Labs Review

We found that the Global IP Sound codec had some pretty interesting positive effects under high packet loss conditions, which we tested using the Shunra Cloud 4.0 network emulator tool which can inject latency and packet loss. I should note that we used an older/slower PocketPC with a softphone client containing the GIPS codec engine, so the latency numbers are much higher than a PC or hardphone would have.

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