Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
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Mobile fax? Why do you need that?

Fax is an enduring technology. While you may think that fax is declining, some reports show that the market is actually...

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We ask the experts: How can exceptional QoE be achieved in VoLTE networks?

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

What does voice over LTE (VoLTE) offer your subscribers? Better voice quality, including HD voice. Rich communications with messaging and video. And whatever inventive applications you choose to introduce. In other words, VoLTE can provide a superior quality of experience (QoE) for subscribers and give you a competitive edge — particularly when your service operates at its best. 

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In my last blog[CCE1] , our experts explained why an end-to-end strategy is the key to maintaining peak VoLTE performance. Now we’ll look at how this strategy gets put into practice to optimize real-world service offerings. The information here is based on interviews with Luis Venerio who works with our VoLTE Readiness Services team. And his observations come straight from his experience on VoLTE deployments that serve millions of subscribers.

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Wearable Tech Expo 2014 Kicking off in NYC

My team is at the Jacob Javits Center setting up for Wearable Tech Expo 2014 which will take place Wednesday and Thursday...

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When Does WebRTC Need a Media Server? Reason #7

Tsahi Levent-Levi’s white paper, “Seven Reasons for WebRTC Server-Side Processing,” details a variety of WebRTC-related scenarios that necessitate a media server....

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How signaling spikes affect networks: 3 real-world examples

By: Josee Loudiadis, Director of Network Intelligence, Alcatel-Lucent

Data and signaling growth are usually good news for network operators, since growth often translates into higher revenues. But when growth is averaged over a month or quarter, the daily highs and lows of network activity are smoothed out. And signaling spikes remain hidden within the averages. These spikes can overwhelm available signaling capacity, which impairs the customer experience, as well as the operator’s reputation.

What happens when a spike occurs? Typically, a CPU Overload alarm appears on various mobile nodes. And the Network Operations Center (NOC) immediately starts praying that the burst is short-lived and doesn’t go over maximum peak-rate capacity. Because when that happens, all consumers are denied service access. Then, the process of identifying the source of the problem begins. This can be arduous, because it often involves applications completely out of NOC control. And the issue can’t be resolved easily without solid network analytics that enables engagement with application and device developers.

That’s the reason signaling information is a crucial part of the Alcatel-Lucent Mobile Apps Rankings report and why LTE World 2014 devotes an entire pre-conference day to the topic. It’s also why this blog offers a closer look at how some real-world disruptive signaling spikes got started — and were finally resolved.

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The Expanding Channel Programs

Not only do I see more cloud service providers looking to the channel for sales, I see other channel programs expanding....

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When Does WebRTC Need a Media Server? Reason #6

In a recent blog about the current state of WebRTC, I mentioned that readers should check out an excellent white paper...

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Nimcat Networks Roars to Light

October 7, 2004

I sat down at a conference breakfast at Internet Telephony Expo at a table with two other gentlemen. The gentleman to my right saw my TMC badge and asked if I was with TMC. I explained that I was in charge of TMC Labs and that I did VoIP articles, VoIP and call center/CRM product reviews, as well as a VoIP blogger here.

When he gave me his business card which said "Mahshad Koohgoli - CEO - Nimcat Networks", I said to him, "You guys have a peer-to-peer phone solution similar to Popular Telephony's Peerio, don't you?"

Mahshad was a little taken aback and said, "I'm impressed.

Department of Defense deploys VoIP

October 7, 2004

Remember this blog entry where I said the Navy had the largest VoIP deployment? VoIP Blog - VoIP News, Opinions: Navy Largest VoIP Deployment

Well, I was right then, but wrong now. Sounds like Kerry's "the wrong war in the wrong place at the wrong time" quote doesn't it?

Anyway, a reliable source has told me that the Department of Defense (DOD) is in the process of beating the Navy's 350,000 Cisco VoIP phones by deploying 400,000 Cisco VoIP phones.

Scientific Atlanta and VoIP

October 7, 2004

When I think Scientific Atlanta, I think TV cable converter boxes. Now, with VoIP and the "triple play" becoming much more important in cable, Scientific Atlanta will no doubt enhance and extend the functionality of their TV converter boxes to include VoIP functionality. They're already doing just that. Bundling multiple functions into one box is always a good thing - less electricity usage, less boxes to administrate and integrate, etc.

VoIP to reach 12.1 Million U.S. Households

October 7, 2004

New Snom 190 VoIP phone

October 6, 2004

snom 190 VoIP phone

Rich Tehrani forwarded me this email about a new phone from Snom.
We are delighted to announce the launch of the new snom190 phone. The new IP phone builds on the proven design of the popular snom 200, adding enhanced performance and a lower price.

Performance features include a new acoustic subsystem with full duplex speaker phone and a DSP that supports echo cancelation, a menu of standard codecs and 3-way calling. Each snom 190 comes complete with an autoswitching 110/220V AC Power Pack. Power Over Ethernet is now optional, supported by a new external POE Splitter.


Time Warner brings VoIP to NYC

October 6, 2004

Saw this article about Time Warner bringing VoIP to NYC

What's interesting to note is that Time Warner was at least somewhat "honest" about the technology they are using as compared to Cox (see this blog entry). That is, Howard Szarfarc, the president of Time Warner Cable of New York & New Jersey, stated that TWC's Digitalphone initiative is different from other VoIP-based businesses, because it does not use the "public" Internet to make calls. (There goes that FUD about public Internet calling again)

Anyway, he explained the new service is enabled by TWC's Hybrid Fibre Coaxial (HFC) network, which is the backbone for its RoadRunner high-speed broadband, Video on Demand (VoD) and Digital Video Recorder (DVR) services. Digitalphone calls begin on the TWC network and travel to their regional data center in New York City. Sprint then completies the call across its network.

Microsoft Live Communications Server 2005

October 6, 2004

This is an excellent article discussing Microsoft's Live Communications Server 2005 (LCS) which is to be released later this month: Microsoft to Muscle Deeper Into VOIP?

From this article: "Microsoft's end game is to become a telephony provider and give Vonage, Verizon, etc., a run for their money," said one source close to the company, who requested anonymity. "They are going SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) in a big way. And because SIP is multi-media capable (start with voice, switch to video, conferencing, etc. in mid stream), it's a nice protocol for them."

Microsoft is getting back into VoIP in a big way with LCS and will be pushing this product pretty hard.

Plantronics CS50-USB headset

October 6, 2004

Plantronics CS50-USB

Plantronics has unveiled the CS50-USB wireless headset at the Internet Telephony Conference and Expo today in Los Angeles. The headset will allow users to roam up to 200 feet from their PC. They're marketing it as a VoIP headset working in conjunction with major softphones. It will begin shipping to retailers in North America this December, and will cost about $300 USD.

AT&T and D-Link ink VoIP deal

October 6, 2004

D-Link logo

AT&T and D-link have inked a deal with AT&T. Engineers have worked closely with AT&T to implement Quality of Service (QoS) for more reliable connections and sound quality.Through this joint engineering effort with AT&T, D-Link became the first company to meet AT&T's stringent specifications and was recently named a charter member of AT&T's VoIP Innovation and Interoperability Program. According to the release, they are "Focused on driving the QoS for VoIP, D-Link's engineers worked diligently with AT&T to deliver the ability to adjust upload bandwidth as needed by intelligently analyzing voice over data packets to insure real-time delivery per AT&T specifications."

It's always a good thing when major broadband home router companies such as D-Link or LinkSys implement QoS into their routers. This will help better and improve the end-user's VoIP experience.

Skype keynote

October 6, 2004

I just got out of the Internet Telephony Expo keynote featuring Niklas Zennstrom, CEO from Skype, a real rebel trying to establish a business plan for Skype while at the same time maintaining their loyal and rabid following of fans that is currently 12 million users and growing.

Here are some of the highlights:

- SkypeIn for inbound calling from a PSTN number to a Skype user will be launched next year - around July 2005. This will be a major milestone for Skype, since currently right now, Skype users can only reach other Skype users or make outbound PSTN calls. Once Skype offers inbound calling via a PSTN number assigned to the Skype user, then Skype will have all the major bases covered.

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