Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
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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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ITEXPO will help Explain the Coming Cloud Upgrade

The cloud is changing how technology is bought, sold and used. The very economics of business have shifted as a result. When...

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WebRTC Expo San Jose 2014 Interviews

Are you interested in WebRTC but yet you missed the largest event in the space, WebRTC Expo a few months back in...

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The M&A Picks Up Steam

Well, that Hosted VoIP consolidation is slowly happening. Reinvigorated VoIP blogger, Garrett Smith, hints that Jive bought other HPBX companies (unnamed)...

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The Data Interconnections Waze and others need

Let me start by saying that there are exceptions to what I am about to discuss below but generally speaking, inter-app connectivity...

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Vonage Mobile Adds Video Calls

April 18, 2013

Grandstream GXP2200 Review

April 8, 2013


The Grandstream GXP2200 Gigabit IP phone is another Android-based IP phone in a growing line of Android-based IP phones that includes the Panasonic KX-UT670, CloudTC, and the ESI 250. A couple years ago I espoused the benefits of a tablet-based desktop phone running either iOS or Android, so that this "universal" device becomes your portable tablet/computer and your desktop IP phone. We're not quite there yet, since all the Android desktop IP phones are not battery powered and require either a Power over Ethernet (PoE) or AC adapter for power. Further, as with anything, cost will play a role.

Detailed WebRTC Research Report Out

April 1, 2013

Well, it was inevitable - a detailed and possibly first WebRTC research report is out with full analysis of the WebRTC marketplace & value chain. I've been blogging on VoIP since 2004 and writing about VoIP since 1996, when I wrote what I believe was the first VoIP product review (Vocaltec). But I've never been as excited about a new VoIP technology as I am WebRTC. WebRTC is going to be huge, which is why TMC launched a show WebRTC Conference & Expo focused exclusively on WebRTC.

So I'm interested to check out this research report which measures 160 pages in length, including detailed commentary, analysis, forecasts and over 50 tables and charts with over 70 WebRTC companies discussed.


Skype for Windows Phone 8 Gets HD First & More Feature Love

March 19, 2013

Today, Skype released an update for the Skype for Windows Phone 8 Preview, version 2.4, which for the first time ever adds HD video calling to a mobile version of Skype. This version leverages the hardware acceleration capability of Windows Phone 8 to enable the HD video experience.

It offers VGA video (640x480) on lower end handsets and 720P HD on higher-end devices including the Nokia Lumia 920, HTC 8X and Samsung Ativ S. Importantly, the app can intelligently determines the best quality available based on the speed of your connection. They also added People Hub integration, landscape mode for calls, and the ability to switch between front and back cameras.


Finally, the Microsoft acquisition of Skype appears to be paying dividends. Get the updated version now from Windows Phone Store.




Windows 8 Underscan / Overscan & HDMI Resolution Problem Solved!

February 25, 2013

I had a problem with Windows 8 having underscan (& overscan) issue where the screen was not filling entire TV screen over a HDMI connection, resulting in abnormally large black borders. Who wants to watch 1920x1080 (1080p) HD video content with black borders? Well, after some extensive researching I was able to resolve the issue.

The specific computer I'm using is a Dell Zino HD with a ATI / AMD 4330 video card, which was running Windows 7, but I upgraded to Windows 8 and which was when the problems began. On Windows 7, you simply install AMD/ATI's Catalyst Control Center (CCC) and then you can launch CCC and change the underscan/overscan settings to fill your whole screen.

Windows 8 Sync Settings - Security Hole

February 15, 2013


Windows 8 has a cool new feature that lets you login with your cloud-based Microsoft account (@hotmail.com, @live.com, @outlook.com) and it will synchronize your settings between Windows 8 PCs, but with a "security catch". We'll get into that in a moment. First, here's a list of features and settings that you can sync:
  • Personalize - Colors, background, lock screen, and your account picture
  • Desktop personalization - Themes, taskbar, high contrast, and more
  • Passwords - sign-in info for some apps, websites, networks, and HomeGroup
  • Ease of Access - Settings for Narrator, Magnifier, and more
  • Language preferences - Keyboards, other input methods, display language, and more
  • App settings - Certain settings in your apps, but not all
  • Browser settings - Internet Explorer history and bookmarks/favorites
  • Other Windows settings - Windows Explorer, mouse settings, and more
  • Sign-in info - For some apps, websites, networks, and HomeGroup
Looking at this list, you'd probably be just as excited as me. If you have a Windows 8 tablet and a Windows 8 PC, now you can easily view the recent websites you viewed in either due to the  "shared" History.

Japan Goes the Way of the Dodo & Still Supports Fax

February 14, 2013


I've admired Japan for their innovations since the mid 1970s, including the Sony Walkman, the Sony portable CD player, and how their took on the American automobile juggernaut to offer smaller, more fuel efficient, and yes, more reliable cars. While Japan was killing American companies with their superior consumer electronics, I couldn't help but admire their ingenuity.

Well, to my shock and horror I just read a NY Times piece claiming that fax is alive and well in Japan and in fact the Japanese are reticent to ever give it up. Say what? In the age of email, social media, online banking, etc.


Cisco Strengthens Products For Midmarket

February 12, 2013


Cisco today announced a series of news surrounding their midmarket product line and their partners that sell Cisco products in this space. A quick overview is that they announced some enhancements to Cisco Business Edition 6000, their midmarket collaboration platform, a new Cisco Express Collaboration specialization, simplification of Telepresence Advanced Technology Programs, and tools for Midsize Business Marketing Campaigns.

I spoke with Marc Inderhees, Senior Manager, Worldwide Collaboration Channel Sales about this news. He stated that Cisco sees the midmarket as 100-1000 employees with over 3.7 million midmarket businesses worldwide. According to Cisco, 1 in 6 employees work for a midmarket company.


It's the Tablet Size Niches!

February 7, 2013

The original 2010 iPad diagonal screen size was 9.7" (9.5" width). Three years later, the fourth generation iPad is still 9.7". Amazon was able to carve out a new successful tablet size niche with the Kindle Fire, which has a 7.1" diagonal screen size. Apple was forced to respond with the Apple mini which sports a 7.9" diagonal.

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