Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
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| VoIP & Gadgets blog - Latest news in VoIP & gadgets, wireless, mobile phones, reviews, & opinions

Why Aren't You My Customer?

COMPTEL had a sales training session for attendees with Stephen Schiffman. Schiffman has written 50+ books in his 35 year career...

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How Imagine Communications is Bringing Video Distribution to the cloud and Beyond

At the end of 2014 I declared Imagine Communications one of the companies to watch in 2015, specifically stating: The video industry...

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The Race to Gigabit is About Business

The cable companies racing to Gigabit networks isn't about delivering ultra-fast broadband to consumers. The Gigabit announcements get them good PR...

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Four Ways Cable Operators Can Boost the Customer Experience

By Mae Kowalke, TMCnet Contributor

The customer experience has always mattered, but its importance has grown in recent years. This has been driven by increased global competition, including the almost instant availability of alternations, and the rising expectations by fickle and informed consumer. Yet, cable operators have a long way to travel if they want to deliver the customer experience (CX) that consumers demand.

The Temkin Group’s Q3 2014 survey of 10,000 US consumers’ opinions about goods and services registered the lowest ranking average Net Promoter Score (NPS) for pay TV providers, a telling statistic. Internet service providers did almost as poorly, coming in only one position higher.

“As technology innovations drive shifts in consumer behavior and open new service opportunities, operators must start eliminating pain points,” stressed Alcatel-Lucent’s Nicholas Cadwgan in a recent TechZine article, Cable MSOs transform the customer experience. “This includes any obstacles that will impede their ability to launch and provide adequate care and quality assurance for those services.”

Cadwgan lays out four customer experience management (CEM) areas that cable operators should focus on.

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HP Can't Compete in Public Cloud as Amazon Machine Learning Launches

There are long-term trends in technology we all know are happening. Computers will get more powerful. More devices will be connected. Finally,...

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Citrix and Grasshopper Make a Good Pair

Citrix has many products - DaaS, NetScaler, ZenApp, SingleSignon and the GoTo suite of products: GoToAssist, GoToMyPC, GoToMeeting, GoToTraining, GoToWebinar, Podio...

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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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