Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
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Asterikast video podcasts to teach you Asterisk

February 21, 2006

Asterikast is a podcast that teaches and explains about the VoIP-capable Asterisk PBX by Digium. According to Asterikast, "We also plan on having videos that can help step you through the process of setting up your very own Asterisk PBX."

They already have two episodes available for download. Episode I, "the very first episode of Asterikast" they cover how to compile Asterisk and setup one SIP phone. Episode II has much higher quality video, audio and on-screen footage.

Philips VP5500 WiFi VoIP phone launches

January 23, 2006

The Philips VP5500 WiFi VoIP phone was announced way back in September 2005 and it was finally launched today in the Netherlands of all places. No offense Netherlands, but how come you get first dibs on this cool phone? Anyway, the sleekly styled VP-5500 is powered by Linux and lets users enjoy live video calls using its built-in VGA camera (640x480 resolution) that rotates up to 240 degrees and supports 30 FPS. Video calls are displayed on a 2.2" color LCD supporting 64k colors. The VP5500 features a video out port that lets others watch the video on a TV.

Tello a near term solution?

January 23, 2006

Tello was launched today by Pulver with some help from Craig McCaw, telecom banker Michael Price and former Apple CEO John Sculley. What is Tello? Tello enables enterprise users to see the presence of the person they are trying to reach - whether the users is on a phone, cellphone, etc., regardless of which IM client service they use, i.e. MSN Messenger, AOL/AIM, Yahoo! Messenger, etc.

PalmSource joins Linux Phone Standards (LiPS) Forum

November 14, 2005

Some news from PalmSource, about them joining a forum that is trying to "standardize" Linux components and APIs that run on mobile phone devices. The reason why Microsoft has been making such strong in-roads in the mobile phone market arena is because they have strict requirements and they provide a baseline operating system that makes it easier for developers to cross-develop applications for different, often competing Windows Mobile devices running Windows Mobile 5.0 (or earlier generations). Here's the release from their website.

PalmSource, Inc., provider of Palm OS, a leading operating system powering next generation phones and mobile devices, today announced that it is a founding member of the Linux Phone Standards (LiPS) Forum.

Vonage uses Covergence for e911

October 17, 2005

I had a conference call last week with Covergence, about their pending announcment with Vonage that explains that Covergence is the company that powers Vonage's e911 service. Covergence is an interesting company that has been stealthily flying under the VoIP radar screen, including my radar.

Basically, Covergence is similar to a Session Border Controller (SBC) but much more advanced offering unified security and management of network applications. For example, it is application aware, including SIP-aware and can route e911 PSAP information to the appropriate 911 emergency services gateway.

Asterisk The Future of Telephony book

October 4, 2005

There's a new book on the popular open-source Asterisk IP-PBX phone system out, titled Asterisk : The Future of Telephony that you may be interested in. One of the coauthors stated, "Shortly after discovering Asterisk, I realized that this phenomenon was going to radically alter the telecommunications industry. I knew that open source telephony represented a bright new future: not just for me, but also for the telecom industry as a whole," says Jim Van Meggelen, "Asterisk is as much a cultural revolution in the IT and telecom industries as it is a technical one." I need to get my hands on a copy and do a book review. In meantime, here are some other thoughts from the various book authors...

Internet telephony with VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) hasn't yet reached critical mass, but it's poised to.

Linux softphones reviewed

September 30, 2005

Artesyn and MontaVista offer Embedded Linux Carrier-grade solutions

September 20, 2005

Just some quick news to share about Artesyn Communication Products which is partnering with MontaVista to offer Linux Carrier Grade Edition (CGE) for its telecom blades and modules. Embedded Linux is becoming more imporantant in the telecom sector and not just Asterisk enterprise solutions, but in the carrier sector as well.

Artesyn will offer bundled, certified MontaVista CGE solutions for its PICMG 2.16, AdvancedTCA, AdvancedMC, ProcessorPMC blades and modules, preinstalled in flash memory. Artesyn blades and modules equipped with MontaVista CGE provide a modular open architecture platform for building scaleable, high-availability network infrastructure equipment.

“Embedded Linux is emerging as a dominant platform for building high-availability network infrastructure products, and we are committed to offering our telecom equipment OEM customers the finest carrier grade Linux solutions,” said Todd Wynia, vice president of marketing at Artesyn. “Soon, Network Equipment Providers (NEPs) will be able to purchase MontaVista’s carrier grade Linux directly from Artesyn, certified by MontaVista, and pre-installed in flash on our telecom blades and modules.”

MontaVista Linux CGE is an open and flexible development platform designed specifically to address the unique and demanding requirements of carrier grade class applications, with a strong focus on open standards and high availability services.

Earthlink Vling uses Pingtel soft phone

August 26, 2005

Google Talk supports SIP, what does Skype do now?

August 24, 2005

Now that Google has announced plans to support SIP in Google Talk and plans to "federate" with third-party providers including Sipphone's Gizmo Project and Earthlink's Vling, where does this leave Skype? Skype up to now has been able to deflect criticisms for using a proprietary protocol and not supporting SIP. Part of their "excuse" for using a proprietary protocol was that it was needed in order for NAT traversal of firewalls.

But how long can Skype use this "excuse" now that Google plans to adopt the SIP protocol, an industry standard and currently Google Talk also can do NAT traversal? I should point out that currently Google Talk's VoIP feature doesn't use SIP but instead uses a custom XMPP-based signaling protocol for its peer-to-peer communication mechanism.

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