Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
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Rich Tehrani Thoughts From California

I've been on the road in Vegas and California over the past ten days or so. Here are my thoughts. The Venetian...

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GENBAND Kandy Goes Public at Ruby Skye

Last night, GENBAND hosted a gala premiere at Ruby Skye in San Francisco for its official Kandy launch - the transitional solution...

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Peter's View: The Channel Ecosystem

I read CRAIG'S VIEW: THE NEW CHANNEL ECOSYSTEM by Craig Schlagbaum, channel chief at Comcast. My response was too long for...

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2 Ways to Maximize Your Vendor Relationship

As channel partners, we get hammered all the time to sell vendor's stuff - even if it is unreasonable or doesn't...

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The Changing Definition of the Diameter Signaling Controller and Diameter Routing Agent (DRA)

Next week, I will be speaking at the Signaling Focus Day of LTE Asia.  The signaling focus day obviously will have...

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The Cat Video Index: A Simple View of Data Costs

By: Andy Porter, Product Manager in the Payment, Policy and Charging department at Alcatel-Lucent

The Economist has its famous Big Mac index for comparing buying power across countries. But I wanted an index that focuses on the cost of mobile data usage. That meant I had to find a data-charging equivalent of the Big Mac. I needed an item that crosses cultural boundaries, is universally understood and is available worldwide.

I considered many possibilities. But the answer arrived when I saw my daughter laughing at a video of a cat playing a piano. Obviously, the mobile data equivalent of the Big Mac is the YouTube video. It’s a universally available service that is easily measured in quantitative terms, making it ideal for comparing mobile data costs.

In honor of my daughter, I chose the classic “piano-playing cat” as the baseline video. And by the way, this cat video has been viewed over 34 million times, proving its suitability as a baseline.

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THE SECRET VALUE OF VoLTE - WHAT'S IN IT FOR CONSUMERS

By: Ed Elkin, Director, IP Platforms Marketing, Alcatel-Lucent 

Today’s consumers want faster mobile broadband, and lots of it. That’s the dominant fact shaping Mobile Service Providers’ competitive strategies. So let’s look at what you can offer these valuable subscribers with voice over LTE (VoLTE).

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Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005

October 12, 2004

Media Center Edition 2005

I was just reading about the launch of Media Center Edition 2005 and came across this link: Microsoft to tune up Media Center PC | CNET News.com As I just blogged, I want to buy a Sony model running the new Media Center Edition 2005, however according the link, "The machines are part of Sony's existing "R" series of Vaio Desktops. In addition to sporting the new OS, the machines add faster processors and larger hard drives as well as the option to automatically create a backup of data using RAID. For now, Sony's machines stick to offering a single TV tuner."

One tuner? Are you kidding me???!

Media Center Extender

October 12, 2004

Linksys Wireless A/G Media Center Extender (WMCE54AG)

I have over 167,000 Sony points to use up, so I have been itching to buy a Sony VAIO running Windows Media Center PC for some time now -- which has TiVo-like aka Personal Video Recorder (PVR) functionality. Now with the new Microsoft Media Center 2005 operating system released today, no doubt Sony will come out with the new operating system which has some cool new features. I won't go into the new Media Center 2005 features in this blog entry since I want to talk about wireless Media Center Extenders that work in conjunction with Media Center PCs to wireless transmit your Media Center PC content to anywhere in your house! In fact, one of the reasons I didn't bite the bullet was my PC was so far away from my 65" Mitsubishi television set that I would have to "snake" wires in my house from the PC to the TV, that would no doubt be grounds for a divorce!

Vonage E911 news

October 12, 2004

Thought I'd share this news about Vonage and E911 using Intrado. As you know, one of the knocks against VoIP is 911 support in the event of emergencies. Of course, I have heard from a few people in the VoIP industry "knocking" against using Intrado's database. It could be due to the price-tag of using Intrado's database or it can simply be the people in the VoIP industry knocking them since don't have E911 support themselves.

Segway Centaur

October 12, 2004

AT&T CallVantage Behind Router

October 12, 2004

One of the knocks against AT&T CallVantage was that it doesn't work behind your existing home router/firewall. Their nemesis, Vonage, is able to handle being behind or in front of a firewall - a huge competitive advantage, especially for the security-conscious techies that don't like having any device in the front of the firewall.

Well, Andy Abramson brought to my attention that this is no longer the case - AT&T CallVantage does indeed support being connected behind a firewall, as confirmed by this AT&T CallVantage How To link: AT&T CallVantage

Though I did read somewhere else that contradicts this and it stated that AT&T DOES NOT support having the telephone adaptor (TA) behind the router/firewall, but that they "will soon support such a configuration".

I guess AT&T is moving so fast to add features and functionality to CallVantage the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing!

Symbol NetVision Phone Discontinued

October 12, 2004

Asterisk and SIPPhone

October 11, 2004

VoiceEclipse New VoIP Service Provider

October 11, 2004

Yet another Vonage-wannabe I recently discovered. They have a $29.95 unlimited plan with 2 phone numbers included (at least that is unique).

They also offer $12.95 for 1 phone number and 500 minutes and $24.95 for 2 phone numbers and 1000 minutes.

When I clicked the About Us link it said:
StarNet, Inc., founded in 1994 by Chief Executive Officer Russ Intravartolo, is a leading provider of dial-up Internet access and related products and services in North America. Through its state-of-the-art, fully owned MegaPOP network, StarNet provides reliable, high quality services designed to serve the consumer markets and the small to medium-sized ISP.

AT&T and LinkSys VoIP deal

October 11, 2004

It came as no surprise to me that AT&T and LinkSys would ink a deal to offer AT&T CallVantage on Linksys's home broadband router product line. Now, LinkSys has special VoIP customization for Vonage, AT&T CallVantage, and Verizon VoiceWing.

The Ethernet version is currently available directly from AT&T, and Linksys expects that all versions will be available at retail outlets such as Best Buy, Circuit City, Staples, and Office Depot later this month.

I hope the packaging is clear which VoIP provider you are getting when you buy it at a retail store (such as a Best Buy or CompUSA.) It would really suck if you planned on signing up with one VoIP provider but bought a LinkSys model with a different VoIP service provider embedded inside.

VoIP Testing Tool

October 11, 2004

Here's some news about a VoIP testing tool. VoIP testing tools are becoming more important as VoIP grows, so enjoy this bit of news:

Long Beach, CA - October 12, 2004
Psytechnics, the global leader in voice and video quality assessment software, has teamed with NetTest, a leading worldwide provider of monitoring, management and testing solutions for advanced and converged networks, to bring industry standard voice quality measurement capabilities to NetTest's service assurance tools for VoIP networks.

NetTest will integrate Psytechnics' psyVoIP software for measuring the voice quality of live customer calls into the MasterQuest VoIP solution. The MasterQuest VoIP solution is part of NetTest's OSS solution family based on MasterQuest, designed specifically for telecommunication network carriers and service providers to optimize their business performance and increase revenues

MasterQuest VoIP is a complete service assurance solution for IP networks, combining troubleshooting with key performance indicators to support the management of suppliers' service level agreements.

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