Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
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SIP Forum Announces Ratification of Version 1.0 of SIPconnect

January 23, 2008

In my previous post "SIP Trunking is Hot!" I mentioned SIPconnect and how important this standard will be to SIP trunking. Well at ITEXPO, the SIP Forum announced an important ratification of version 1.0 of the SIPconnect Technical Recommendation.

The SIP Forum announced today that it has ratified version 1.0 of the SIPconnect Technical Recommendation with the unanimous approval of the SIP Forum Board of Directors.

The SIPconnect Technical Recommendation v.1.0, an important initiative of the SIP Forum, is a standards-based approach to direct IP peering between SIP-enabled IP PBXs and VoIP service provider networks, and specifies a reference architecture, required protocols and features and implementation rules necessary for seamless interconnection between IP PBXs and VoIP service providers. As SIPconnect was designed to directly tie enterprise customers to VoIP service providers using an end-to-end IP connection, it eliminates the need for a VoIP gateway, improves voice quality and creates a stable foundation for personalized applications and rich media services.

The formal adoption by the SIP Forum Board of the SIPConnect 1.0 Technical Recommendation is based on recognition that the recommendation has been through credible peer review, including broad membership and significant community review, that it is stable and is well-understood, and that it is believed to have resolved known design choices.

"I want to thank all of the participants in the SIPconnect Task Group for their selfless efforts and valuable time necessary to reach consensus and complete the ratification process," said Richard Shockey, Technical Working Group Chair of the SIP Forum. "This was truly an industry-wide effort that we can continue to build on."

Eric Burger, Chairman of the Board of the SIP Forum, commented, "You can expect more work like this from the SIP Forum as we continue to grow our community and revitalize our Technical Working Group to tackle additional interoperability issues."

The SIPconnect Technical Recommendation has recently enjoyed a number of independent implementations, as witnessed by the rapid adoption of the SIPconnect Compliant Program.

Free IP-PBX!

October 24, 2007

Avaya is offering a free IP-PBX for SMBs that are looking for the latest and greatest in communications technology but can't afford it. Ok, it's not quite "free". It's free for the first 2 years via a 0% lease (no interest) and with no upfront costs. I have to wonder if increased competition in the IP-PBX sector is causing IP-PBX manufacturers to have creating financing strategies.

Avaya #1 VoIP PBX Vendor?

August 21, 2007

I was too busy yesterday to blog this news, but thought it was still important enough to mention. Yesterday, I received an email stating that Avaya, a traditional PBX manufacturer had "widened its lead in worldwide enterprise Internet protocol (IP) telephony revenues." The report showed Avaya as the #1 vendor in IP telephony revenue. This caught my eye for a couple reasons. One, I thought that Cisco, a traditional networking company that became a IP-PBX manufacturer, was the #1 vendor.

Dialogic DMG4000 Media Gateways launched

August 21, 2007

Dialogic today announced the availability of their Dialogic 4000 Media Gateway Series, including the DMG4060 DTI Media Gateway and the DMG4120 DTI Media Gateway. The Dialogic 4000 Media Gateway Series (aka "DMG4000 gateways”) are a set of integrated systems designed to connect Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 to existing PBX systems and PSTN networks.

It uses a standard rack-mount server running Microsoft Windows Server 2003 and is what Dialogic classifies as a "basic-hybrid gateway” designed to provide both the media gateway function and the Mediation Server role of Office Communications Server 2007.  Mediation Server provides PSTN and PBX interoperability, high-fidelity audio via the Microsoft RT Audio Codec, and VoIP security for Office Communications Server 2007.

EMC Smarts VoIP Performance Manager & Reporter

August 20, 2007

Today, EMC launched a comprehensive solution for managing your VoIP infrastructure, with EMC Smarts VoIP Performance Manager and EMC Smarts VoIP Performance Reporter. The goals of these two software solutions are to maximize the availability and performance of business-critical VoIP services through comprehensive monitoring, alerting, diagnosis and reporting. I spoke with EMC last week to learn more about their latest foray into the VoIP space. My first comment to EMC was that I was unaware EMC was in VoIP and I just thought of them as a storage company.

Former Nortel Subsidiary Picks Fonality's PBXtra Over Nortel

May 17, 2007

Today, I spoke with Fonality's CEO Chris Lyman and Amon Prasad, Director of Information Technology for BLADE Network Technologies. BLADE Network Technologies is a former subsidiary of Nortel and get this - they selected Fonality’s Asterisk-based PBXtra over a comparable system from Nortel. Even though Nortel offered their former subsidiary a discounted price, it was still much more than PBXtra. Chris and Amon explained to me that Fonality was able to offer PBXtra at less than 50 percent of the cost of a proposed Nortel system and that included junking the existing Nortel phonesets with all new VoIP phonesets. Ecstatic over this "win" besting a well-known PBX manufacturer, Fonality stated, "BLADE is one example of how Fonality is now regularly beating out incumbents including, Cisco, Nortel and Alcatel in the small to medium business (SMB) market.

Communications Developer Conference Exceeds Expectations

May 17, 2007

Some great photos from the Communications Developer show that I wanted to share. By all accounts the show has been a resounding success. In fact, Dave Rodriguez, TMC's Vice President of Publications and Conferences sent the TMC team an email update saying, "Just wanted to update everyone on the progress of the Communications Developer event. The first three days have been very successful with attendance exceeding our expectations and genuine excitement and enthusiasm among our exhibitors, sponsors and attendees." This just confirms my point two days ago, that developers are going to be the key driver in taking IP communications to the next level -- so the strong interest and attendance at this show certainly bodes well for the industry.

Also, Rich Tehrani just captured some exhibit hall photos using his mobile phone which he instantly published to his blog! Amazing how technology can make you feel as though you're almost there.

Check out these photos which I borrowed from                          

Communications Developer Conference Packed with Developers

May 15, 2007

I wasn't able to attend Communications Developer Conference, so I have to live vicariously though Rich Tehrani and Greg Galitzine. This conference, which was formerly called VoIP Developer Conference is focused on - you guessed it - developers. Since this is a more focused and technical audience than TMC's Internet Telephony Conference and Expo, obviously it's going to be a smaller show. But both Greg and Rich emailed me and stated they were pleasantly surprised at just how packed the show was.

Office Communications Server 2007 Public Beta Launches

March 26, 2007

Recently I stated that Microsoft would launch the public beta of Office Communications Server 2007 later this month. Well, Microsoft gave me a heads up on the launching of their public beta of Office Communications Server 2007 which is available later today. The Public Beta code for Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 + Communicator 2007 (client) will be available for download as of 10AM PDT (1PM EDT). Virtual PC images plus video demos will be available following week, which will allow IT staff to more easily trial OCS 2007 as a "virtual" turnkey solution.

Microsoft Public Beta of Office Communications Server 2007

March 7, 2007

Microsoft will open the public beta of its VoIP and unified communications server, Office Communications Server 2007, as well as its unified communications client, Office Communicator 2007, later this month. I wrote a detailed article on Office Communications Server 2007 last year.

"The move to Web-based phone systems will gain momentum during the next three years and Microsoft's new server software will transform the telecommunication systems industry the way its Windows operating system changed the computer industry", said Jeff Raikes, president of Microsoft's business division. He added, "Microsoft sees the shift by business organizations to Web-based phone systems running on its software to generate "billions" of dollars in revenue for the company."

Billions for Microsoft in the VoIP space?

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