Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
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Why E-Mail Sucks and How to Make it Smarter

Many of us live in email. I get hundreds per day and I need almost every message. I am also a source...

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The Contact Center's Seemingly Oxymoronic Play: How to Decrease Costs Yet Improve Customer Service

I was recently asked to talk to some of our many contact center customers about the new contact center trends.  It...

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The New Facet of Customer Experience Management - Field Service 2.0

By: Rhodo Odysseos, Product/Solution Marketing, Alcatel-Lucent, and Jess Verbruggen, Motive Integrated Marketing Assistant, Alcatel-Lucent

Traditionally, communications service providers (CSPs) have treated the field service aspect of their organization as a cost center. Field technicians engaged in maintenance activities were simply a part of the cost of doing business.  More recently, the communications industry in general and the field service arena in particular, has been disrupted by immense changes in the customer profile, service expectations, and behaviors.

Field service is often the only face of the company that a customer will ever see, so it’s not a surprise that CSPs are striving to make a positive impact on customers in this realm. Achieving full potential in field service saves CSPs a lot of time and money. Productivity and efficiency reviews targeted at field service operations, done correctly, can reinforce other areas of the business by increasing customer satisfaction and improving safety and quality. 

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Amazon Fire Phone Should be a Laptop

I’ve written a lot of headlines in my life but this one is among the oddest. Why on earth does a phone...

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Apple Pay Vs. Google Wallet

Replacing credit cards can likely only be done if the new system is dead-easy to use and it moreover has to be...

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Signaling Offers Great Differentiation for Mobile Value-Added Service Offerings

We’ve all heard that some Value Added Services (VAS) revenue such as Short Message Service (SMS) are starting to decline in...

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Birdstep Improves Wireless User Experience, Reduces Churn

A smartphone user can get tripped up easily when in motion as today’s smartphones look for WiFi networks to connect to and...

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Cisco New Routers - Everything but the Kitchen Sink

September 13, 2004

It seems everyone is talking about Cisco’s new routers that were launched today, so I may as well jump in with my comments as well. I’m going to take a more VoIP focused angle than the other news stories I’ve seen on Cisco’s announcement. I just got off a phone briefing with Cisco to discuss their new routers.
Essentially, today Cisco introduced what they are terming the new "Cisco Integrated Services Router Portfolio".

Telchemy VoIP Troubleshooter

September 13, 2004

Thought I would share this since there is certainly a need for more VoIP troubleshooting tools:

"VoIPTroubleshooter.com Provides Free Call Quality Information and Online Diagnostic Tools For Network Managers, Including an Open Repository of Speech Files

Telchemy Incorporated, the global leader in real-time VoIP Performance Management software, today introduced an updated, expanded and redesigned VoIPTroubleshooter.com(TM) Web site. Sponsored by Telchemy, the site contains information and online diagnostic tools for network managers to use when investigating and resolving VoIP-related call quality problems. The site also contains background information, published articles and other useful references/links about voice quality, VoIP Performance Management and packet statistics.
Live today, VoIPTroubleshooter.com includes over 60 pages of diagnostic information related to VoIP call quality. Two new features include: an Open Speech Repository, i.e., data base, and an IP Network Impairment Simulator.

CBS forgeries George Bush National Guard Service

September 12, 2004

I just read this article which is claiming the CBS documents about George Bush are fake.
Power Line: The sixty-first minute

What in the world is going on here? If it is proven that CBS has promoted the controversial Air National Guard documents as "fact" when in fact they are forgeries, then that's it - I'm packing up my bags and moving to Canada. I can't take this divisiveness in this country any more nor journalism that will taint the news to suit their agenda. Where has the brotherly love in the country gone?

Asterisk on Windows

September 9, 2004

Some hot news I've been meaning to share - Asterisk is now available on Windows.

Check it out:
Digium, the leading Open Source telecommunications supplier, and N2Net, a provider of mission critical communication hosting, announce the immediate availability of AstWind, a package allowing users of Microsof's Windows platform to run Asterisk, the Open Source PBX in a fully packet voice installation.
"AstWind allows Windows users to safely install and test the Asterisk PBX with the click of a button." said Gregory Boehnlein, Vice President of N2Net. "The possibilities are boundless! Prospective users can test the software and become familiar with it before deploying a full Linux system. Developers can maintain multiple environments for testing and PBX Administrators can create disaster recovery plans to backup existing installations."

Full release here:
Digium - A Linux Telephony Company

Skype PocketPC client

September 9, 2004

Andy
I knew there were rumors of a Skype client for PocketPCs, but Andy alerted me that Skype launched a VoIP client for PocketPCs today. He also offers some interesting analysis on what this could mean and how it could impact the carriers.

For example, he said:
Add Skype out to a new iPaq 6315 with WiFi and better voice quality. I just wonder how soon the wireless carriers like T-Mobile lock down the ports "for security reasons."

LOL!

VoIP, Inc Acquires VoIP Americas

September 9, 2004

I visited VoIP Americas office down in Miami just last year. They have some good engineers working there, including several brilliant engineers from Russia. I met with Albert Rodriguez, a really good guy who demonstrated VoIP Americas hosted VoIP model to me.

Basically VoIP Americas product allows entrepreneurs to get into the VoIP business and offer Vonage-like services by lowering the entry costs and providing all the features you need - billing, rate charges, administration, etc.

Lingo offers 7 digit dialing

September 9, 2004

As a Vonage user, one of my pet-peeves was having to dial a full 10-digits - even when dialing the local pizzeria, the local chinese restaurant down the street, etc.

I never understood why Vonage or any VoIP voice provider for that matter couldn't simply detect your local region based on your VoIP phone number and then simply pre-pend the area code for you, allowing you to dial a phone number without an area code. As a computer engineer, I know it's so simple to program it's ridiculous!

Well, Lingo now offers 7-digit dialing effective today.

IBM and VoIP

September 8, 2004

I recently blogged this: Tom Keating VoIP and Gadget Blog: VoIP, Where are you IBM?

Well, skibare shared a news release with me that indeed points to IBM at least "using" VoIP. When IBM will start offering a VoIP product or service still remains to be seen.

Check out the news release. I bolded the important part:

NEW YORK (Dow Jones)--Shares of Ptek Holdings Inc.
(PTEK) plunged Wednesday
after the company said one of its largest customers, International Business Machines Corp. (IBM), has found a new provider for certain teleconferencing services.

United Kingdom creates VoIP area code

September 8, 2004

The United Kingdom's telecom industry regulator has plans to push VoIP into the residential mainstream.

Ofcom, the United Kingdom's telecommunications regulatory agency, announced a new numbering system for VoIP.

A new prefix has been established, 056, that is not tied to any particular location and will allow people to switch from their existing phone number to a broadband number.

In addition, certain customers with regional prefixes of 01 and 02 may be able to keep their traditional-line phone numbers after switching to VoIP.

How VoIP Pioneers Can Survive the Coming Battle

September 7, 2004

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