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


Skype P2P VoIP

Mplat FlashPhone for VoIP

October 4, 2005

The Mplat FlashPhone F2K
is a USB device that supports Skype, Google Talk, MSN, Xten, etc. with an integrated microphone and external headphones/ear buds.

I don't know what the deal is with the wet promo image they used on their website. Are they trying to say this is a sexy VoIP device or that it's waterproof? In any event, it comes bundled with Skype, but again supports any VoIP client software.

Skype 1.4 is now out

September 29, 2005

More on FCC VoIP wiretaps

September 28, 2005

It appears that the new FCC rules to allow a backdoor for wiretapping is not going to happen without a fight. Declan McCullagh reports that The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) said Wednesday that it plans to file suit against the new federal rule. The only thing that Declan may have gotten slightly wrong is this part in bold where he only refers to SkypeOut:

the Federal Communications Commission said that broadband providers and Internet phone companies that link to the public telephone network (Vonage, Packet 8, SkypeOut) must rewire their networks to readily accommodate police wiretaps. If they don't comply, they must shut down.

As I have recently stated here and here, it appears that not only is SkypeOut applicable to this new FCC wiretapping rules, but plain-ole' Skype (Skype-to-Skype) calls fall under the FCC wiretap guidelines as well.

FCC requires some broadband and VoIP Providers to accommodate wiretaps

September 26, 2005

I must have missed the FCC's announcement 3 days ago that the FCC was going to require certain broadband and VoIP Providers to accommodate wiretaps. The 59-page FCC report is a bit lengthy for me to digest today, so maybe I'll provide a more detailed analysis tomorrow.

A quick speed read seems to indicate the FCC is going to force Internet providers to accomodate wiretaps, but that doesn't include cafes or hotels that use or pay for Internet service. I guess the FCC is targetting the main ISPs and not resellers of Internet service. Here's a very interesting excerpt that sums up who is covered by CALEA wire-tapping rules:

We conclude that CALEA applies to providers of “interconnected VoIP services.” As defined in our recent VoIP E911 Order,107 interconnected VoIP services include those VoIP services that: (1) enable real-time, two-way voice communications; (2) require a broadband connection from the user’s location; (3) require IP-compatible customer premises equipment; and (4) permit users to receive calls from and terminate calls to the PSTN.108 We find that providers of interconnected VoIP services satisfy CALEA’s definition of “telecommunications carrier” under the SRP and that CALEA’s Information Services Exclusion does not apply to interconnected VoIP services.

Skype v1.4 Released (soon)

September 26, 2005

Skype is releasing the new version of Skype for Windows v1.4 later this week, codenamed Aviator. Skype for Windows v1.4 is still in beta, but will be released as official public version later this week. Skype told me, "We have been busy listening to the Skype community, adding new features and polishing existing features and tools." Skype's next version for Windows will have the following features and improvements:

  • Improved Voice Quality
  • Call Forwarding - lets you forward incoming Skype and SkypeIn calls to a landline, mobile number or another Skype Name when you're away from Skype. You can choose to forward your calls to up to 3 numbers or Skype Names simultaneously.

IPdrum launches

September 20, 2005

IPdrum will hold its official product launch of IPdrum Mobile Skype Cable - a product that enables Skype enthusiasts to make and receive Skype calls over the GSM network. The IPdrum Mobile Skype Cable connects Skype to a mobile telephone via the mobile telephone network - allowing Skype users true mobility and free worldwide calling.

“This marriage of technology will change the mobile phone network as we know it today, forcing the mobile carriers to re-think their international calling price strategy,” says Jerry Pettersson, founder of IPdrum. “Just as Skype has changed the land line (PSTN) network landscape, the IPdrum Mobile Cable will further revolutionize the complete communication network.”

The IPdrum Mobile Skype Cable consists of a cable that connects between a mobilephone and a computer, and software. By leveraging the Skype program, the IPdrum enables a user to access the Skype service while using a mobile telephone.

The key to IPdrum is the connection between the mobile telephone and the computer.

Keep your eye on Eyeball Networks

September 19, 2005

"I sense a shift in the force." As most in the VoIP blogosphere already knew, Eyeball Networks, a developer of VoIP and video telephony software for service providers and device manufacturers, hired Eric Lagerway, as their Chief Operating Officer. Eric runs the popular VoIP blog and was formerly with Xten, another softphone company. TMC Labs did one of the first, if not THE first review of Eyeball Networks product back in 2001, which you can check out here.

Eric has always been a big proponent of open-standards and he promised me that he will push Eyeball Networks in that direction. Admittedly, Eric stated that Eyeball Chat is still proprietary but "before Xmas this year it will be SIP and open standards through and through." Part of my role here is to instill open standards and new product strategies.

Avaya buys Nimcat Networks

September 19, 2005

Chril Pirillo on GoogleTalk, eBay/Skype and other IM stuff

September 14, 2005

Verso Technologies blocks Skype

September 14, 2005

Verso Technologies, Inc. today announced the introduction of its new carrier-grade application filter, which enables carriers to restrict peer-to-peer traffic, including Skype calls, P2P messaging, streaming media and instant messaging. Sound familiar?

Packeteer is another company offering the capability to not only identify and classify Skype traffic, but they can also "throttle" Skype packets by assigning them low priority or even block Skype packets. So while Verso Technologies is not the first or even the only company to offer "application-level" filtering and blocking of Skype packets, what really makes this news interesting is that China Telecom is a customer of Verso Technology.

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