Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
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Top 20 VoIP Innovators of All Time

June 13, 2011

VoIP has come a long way since it was first popularized by VocalTec in the mid 1990s. Here is a slideshow of the Top 20 VoIP Innovators of all time with photo captions explaining why they merit this top 20 ranking. Most innovators are companies, but not all. Two important VoIP standards make the list, which cannot be attributed to a single individual or company.

Blue Jeans Network Bridges Skype, SIP, H.323 for Multipoint Telepresence Solution

May 9, 2011

Blue Jeans Network has been quietly developing a new cloud-based video conferencing and collaboration service that bridges H.323 and SIP end-points, PSTN — and even Skype, with the goal of allowing users to connect everything from high-end video telepresence systems like Tandberg/Cisco and Lifesize to web cams running Skype to desktop IP videophones from Polycom, Grandstream, Cisco, and others. This solves a major problem with video conferencing and telepresence since interoperability, while it has improved, still doesn't take into account legacy H.323 end-points or users that only have inexpensive webcams. Blue Jeans Network plans to support Google and Microsoft Lync as well. Their cloud-based service handles the transcoding of audio and video codecs as well as manages the meeting IDs, PINs, etc.

Cisco Responds to Polycom's Adoption of TIP and Interoperability

February 10, 2011

A Cisco representative saw my article about Polycom's announcement to support Telepresence Interoperability Protocol (TIP) and she thought I'd be interested in hearing Cisco's take. David Hsieh, vice president, emerging technologies, Cisco responded to this news announcement as follows:

"We are pleased to hear that Polycom is joining other companies in adopting the Telepresence Interoperability Protocol (TIP), the only open, multi-screen Telepresence interoperability protocol available today. TIP, originally developed by Cisco to enable multi-screen telepresence interoperability, was turned over to the IMTC (International Multimedia Teleconferencing Consortium) to be managed as an industry standard.  It is not a Cisco proprietary protocol — it’s an open protocol available to anyone in the industry.

Polycom UC Intelligent Core Platform Supports TIP Standard - Interoperable with Cisco

February 9, 2011

June of last year I wrote about how Cisco had to adopt the open source TIP protocol before the EU would approve Cisco's acquisition of Tandberg:
An interesting back story behind the Cisco acquisition of Tandberg is that Cisco had to make sure Cisco's open source and free TIP (Telepresence Interoperability Protocol) protocol was used. The EU wouldn't approve the acquisition of Tandberg without Cisco agreeing to use this protocol. There have been obvious concerns (including my own) that Cisco/Tandberg could create a proprietary telepresence platform that locked out third-party competitors. Cisco and Tandberg just made an announcement stating advanced multiscreen telepresence interoperability with each other as well as other third-party systems, by integrating the Telepresence Interoperability Protocol (TIP) on Cisco's newly acquired Tandberg TelePresence Server.
The fruits of that effort are now realized with today's announcement from Polycom.

Yealink VP-2009 Review

January 7, 2011

Yealink sent me their Yealink VP-2009 color touch-screen videophone to review a few months back and I finally found some time to crack open the box and check out this very cool phone. Featuring a large 7" digital TFT-LCD with 800×480 pixels resolution, the VP-2009 is pretty slick looking and supports HD voice (G.722) and popular HD codecs (H.263 & H.264).

Installing the VP-2009 was a breeze. I registered the phone with a trixbox Pro system, which is an Asterisk-based IP-PBX. After connecting it to the network and acquiring an IP address, I went to the web portal and logged with the default credentials (user = admin, password = admin).

Use Skype to Video Call Any Video Endpoint: Polycom, Cisco, Tandberg, etc.

November 22, 2010

Christian Bongiovanni, co-CEO and CTO for Imagicle gave me a demo of SkyStone Video, which enables video conferencing everywhere to any video endpoint. Using SkyStone Video you can call any video endpoint using Skype, including Cisco/Tandberg, Lifesize, Polycom, Radvision, Sony, and others, enabling you to call video phones, video conferencing systems, and telepresence solutions. Guess this means the VoIP Videphone War is over!

To do the demo I simply went to their website and clicked this button (Note: you can do this too):

If you hover your mouse over the button above you'll see it's a Skype link.

KONNECT Office Phone System Review

November 19, 2010

Aksys Networks KONNECT Office Phone System is a fascinating P2P VoIP IP-PBX targeting the SME/SMB space. When I first head of a peer-to-peer phone system I immediately flashed back to Nimcat Networks, which was one of the first to offer a P2P phone system, way back in 2004. Nimcat Networks was acquired in 2005 by Avaya and then killed off about 6 months ago in favor of Avaya's IP Office SME solution. Thus, ended the great enterprise P2P VoIP experiment leaving just Skype as the sole P2P VoIP solution.

Avaya IP Office v6.1 Launches

November 15, 2010

Avaya, Inc. today released Avaya IP Office Release 6.1. Avaya IP Office is the company’s flagship communications solution for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The new version delivers a host of business collaboration and customer service enhancements that can improve ease-of-use and worker productivity for SME workers, while introducing significant new efficiencies for businesses. I had a conference call and demo with Avaya executives to find out what would be in the latest version of IP Office.

Texas Instruments TNETV1072 processor Supercharges voice experience Optimized for Microsoft Lync

October 26, 2010

Texas Instruments claims that their TNETV1072's C64x+ digital signal processor (DSP) core provides "exceptional high-definition voice and wideband acoustic echo cancellation capabilities offering richer voice quality to its users." The chip is targeting and is specifically optimized for Microsoft Lync. It appears Aastra and Polycom are both taking advantage of this chip in their IP phones. Check out the full news announcement:

Offering richer voice capabilities, Texas Instruments’ high-performance TNETV1072 processor enables an enhanced voice experience Optimized for Microsoft Lync

TI’s TNETV1072 processor powers the Microsoft Lync Server 2010 IP phone platform, providing customers with VoIP capabilities and integrated desktop functionality

Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) (NYSE: TXN) continues to build momentum in the unified communications (UC) space as it announces that  its TNETV1072 high-performance processor powers IP phones Optimized for Microsoft Lync.  TI’s processor enables the enhanced voice experience with UC functions, including presence, in advanced endpoints such as the Aastra 6721ip and 6725ip and the Polycom® CX500, CX600 and CX3000 IP phones.

XConnect Partners with Polycom, BroadSoft and Dialogic to Increase HD Voice Adoption

September 7, 2010

XConnect is announcing a four-company initiative to promote HD voice adoption among U.K. service providers. This follows on the news they announced at TMC's ITEXPO where XConnect announced the world's first HD voice peering federation, in the U.S., with the goal of incrasing global HD voice uptake.

In summary, XConnect is announcing that it is joining with Polycom, BroadSoft and Dialogic to launch an educational and marketing campaign to reach U.K. operators.

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