Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
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Unified Communications

AstriCon 2012 360 Degree Panoramic

October 23, 2012

Microsoft Lync Pavillion at ITEXPO Features PlayStation 3?

October 4, 2012

Watchitoo's Playground Unveiled - Watch out Skype & Google Hangouts!

October 3, 2012


Watchitoo today unveiled Playground, their cloud-based video collaboration platform for small and medium businesses featuring up to 25 participants that can do video, screen sharing, chat, and file sharing. I did a demo of Playground last week and I was very impressed. During my demo with Watchitoo's CEO Rony Zarom and a PR representative we had 3 webcams streaming and he started a screen-sharing session. Next, he started a HD YouTube video.

Novus Distributes First Enhanced Media Gateway for Microsoft Lync Server 2013

October 2, 2012


Novus, a boutique telecommunications and IP distributor serving value-added resellers throughout North America, announced today the distribution of Ferrari electronic’s OfficeMaster Gate media gateway featuring recently released firmware that supports the new features of the next generation Microsoft Lync Server 2013, including the IPv6 protocol. Novus is the official distributor of Ferrari electronic products for the North American market.
 
Ferrari electronic worked in close collaboration with the Microsoft Lync product team in Redmond, Washington to develop the new firmware for the OfficeMaster Gate media gateway and it has been rigorously tested at Microsoft over the last few months. The new firmware from Ferrari electronic was released to coincide with the availability of the Lync 2013 Preview on July 16, 2012.
 
“Ferrari electronic is currently the only European manufacturer of an enhanced gateway certified for Microsoft Lync Server 2010, and it’s the first manufacturer to integrate its gateway with Lync Server 2013,” said Novus Managing Partner Chris Meehan. “This creates a compelling value proposition for resellers because they can install software-based OfficeMaster Gate gateway cards now as proof of concepts and deliver a highly scalable gateway solution with a tremendous ROI to small and medium-sized businesses looking for Lync migration solutions.”
 
Novus offers the Ferrari electronic OfficeMaster Gate media gateway and OfficeMaster SBA survivable branch appliance to resellers in flexible configurations as either appliances or PCI boards.
 
“Resellers will find the licensing options particularly appealing, since they can optionally configure gateway and survivable branch appliance functionality on a single card to reduce power consumption, minimize rack space and further reduce costs while benefitting from ongoing improvements through firmware upgrades that are free of charge within the current revision,” added Meehan.
 
To further incentivize resellers to deploy the Lync Server 2013-ready OfficeMaster Gate media gateway, Novus is announcing a free comprehensive private training program for resellers who sign up to carry the Ferrari electronic products.










Nokia Lumia 920 Image Stabilization is Real - Look out Apple & Samsung!

September 28, 2012


A gadget reviewer and mobile technology expert from Russia took the yet-unreleased Nokia Lumia 920 (Windows Phone 8) and hooked it onto a radio controlled (RC) car to test the super optical image stabilization (OIS) touted by Nokia. Yes, yes, we all know Nokia was excoriated for using a DSLR for their commercial touting the image stabilization of the Lumia 920. Yeah, they should have has a disclaimer saying the video was "simulated" and not actually taken with a Lumia 920, but if Nokia was replicating what the Lumia 920 could "actually" do, then I honestly didn't see why the big brouhaha.

Well, it turns out that Nokia wasn't lying about the Nokia Lumia's OIS capabilities. In the last few days I saw a iPhone vs.


WebRTC - Mobile Communications Game Changer or Flash in the Pan?

September 24, 2012

Came across Erik Lagerway's interesting guest post on Gigaom.com discussing WebRTC and its potential to be a mobile game changer. WebRTC essentially embeds a standard-based real time Media Engine into all of the available browsers enabling real-time voice and video communication from your browser. Erik ponders the future leveraging WebRTC:

Imagine a world where no matter what we use or where we are we could all communicate via video, hassle-free, for free — native video from Apple devices to Samsung devices, from business phones to the TV in your living room, from your car to your home to a beach in Hawaii. That is what WebRTC can do for us.


Windows 8 & Windows 8 RT Metro/Modern UI Lync App Coming Soon

September 21, 2012


Not to be outdone by the Microsoft Skype, which released a touch-friendly Windows 8 Metro/Modern UI Skype app, Microsoft's Lync team announced a Lync app for Windows 8 and Windows RT also using Metro/Modern UI. This touch-friendly Lync app will be available in the Windows Store for both Windows 8 and Windows RT in late October according to the Lync Team Blog.

This will be part of Microsoft Lync 2013, the latest iteration of Microsoft's unified communications platform that brings instant messaging, VoIP, collaboration and video conferencing to the enterprise. In addition to the touch-optimized Lync app, new versions of Lync server and desktop client is coming soon, as well as newer versions of their mobile clients and a browser-based Lync Web app, which will now feature multiparty HD video, voice over IP (VoIP), instant messaging, and desktop, application, and PowerPoint sharing.

Gartner's 'Magic Quadrant for UC' - Cisco Bests Microsoft - Not!

September 11, 2012

Gartner recently posted their Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications along with their analysis of the UC market. As always Gartner's research is a fascinating and insightful read, but I do take slight issue where they positioned Cisco and Microsoft. First let's take a look at the Magic Quadrant:

You will see that Cisco and Microsoft are nearly touching one another and the top two companies within the Magic Quadrant, but Cisco slightly beats Microsoft in both the "leaders" and "visionaries" categories. I don't take issue with Cisco in the "leaders" category, since clearly Cisco has been doing enterprise VoIP, video conferencing and indeed UC longer than Microsoft with many more deployments.

I do however take issue with Cisco beating Microsoft in the "visionaries" category.



ooVoo Launches 4-Screen Multi-Party Video for Apple iOS & Android

August 21, 2012

ooVoo, a competitor to Skype today announced 4-way video chat that works on iOS and Android devices. I had a chance to speak with ooVoo representatives to discuss the news and of course, I used ooVoo during our conference call, as seen here:

ooVoo, is a large social video-chat provider with 54 million registered subscribers.  With the launch of ooVoo’s new mobile apps with support for 4 simultaneous video streams, they are currently the only major video conferencing product offering this - and for free.

Skype for Windows 8 Metro / Modern UI How-To Install

August 20, 2012

So you want to try out the new Skype Metro/Modern UI on Windows 8 do ya? Well so do I, so last week I found out how to download and install a leaked copy of Skype for Windows 8.

1. Download the MetroSkype_1.0.0.128_x86.zip file from here. (Ironic Microsoft wants to kill the name Metro yet their Skype team is still using it for their filenames!

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