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Asterisk 10 - The Inside Story

October 27, 2011



At AstriCon, I sat down with Digium's Steve Sokol, Asterisk Marketing Director, to discuss the big Asterisk 10 release. It's quite the version leap from 1.1, 1.2, 1.4 , 1.6, to 1.8 - and now to 10.0. Ironically, I knocked Asterisk's small version increments when I spoke with Mark Spencer 1-3 years ago. I asked Mark why the version numbering scheme was still less than 2.0.

Digium's Mark Spencer Questions Panasonic About Android APKs/Apps

October 26, 2011

Mark Spencer, Allison Smith & the AstriCon Luncheon - Humor Alert!

October 26, 2011


Today's luncheon at the AstriCon conference was packed to the gills. I saw an open seat at Mark Spencer's table and some Digium folks. But the tables were so crammed close together that I couldn't figure out how to traverse the maze to their table. It didn't help that I was lugging a heavy laptop bag with iPad, laptop, and other gadgets.

AstriCon VoIP Security - $400,000 toll fraud - YIKES!

October 26, 2011


During an AstriCon session on VoIP security the speaker discussed how easy it was to hack voicemail PINs, but not to listen to your voice messages but to initiate "call backs" using spoofed CallerIDs. Essentially, this leverages the "call back" feature that many voicemail systems have to call back the person that left the message.

He then asked the audience for any real world examples of how they were hacked. Several volunteered their stories. I captured one of them where their Elastix server was hacked - due to their parent company locking them out of the server and not updating /patching the server. This resulted in the hackers racking up toll fraud (Korean calls) of $400,000!


Switchvox 5.5 - Sneak Peek!

October 26, 2011

I caught the tail half of Digium's Tristan Barnum's AstriCon session. Tristan Barnum is the Director of Product Marketing for Switchvox at Digium. In her AstriCon session, Tristan stressed how she never ever tells what Switchvox is up to and certainly not what features to expect.

"Switchvox 5.5 is due out the first quarter of the year [2012].

AstriCon - Panoramic Image of 1st Session

October 25, 2011

LOREX Live Connect Wireless Skype Home Surveillance Review

October 25, 2011

The LOREX Technology Live Connect LW2031 Series is a cool Skype-powered home surveillance system sporting night vision (via IR LEDs) and full color H.264 video. It can be used both for home surveillance, but also as a baby monitor due to its night vision and its portable handheld monitor sporting a color 2.4" LCD. It seemed like an interesting Skype product so I had LOREX send me a LW2031 to review.



Installation
Installing this was pretty straightforward. Two of the three devices - camera & handheld monitor use mini-USB power adapters, which are included.




Polycom VVX 500 Launches

October 17, 2011


In 2009, Polycom announced the Polycom VVX 1500, a touch-screen business media phone, that combines IP telephony with business-class video and the ability to integrate with business applications. It was a little bit clunky to be honest, so I'm intrigued by the new Polycom VVX 500 that was just launched, especially since it's slimmer and sexier than the VVX 1500. The VVX 500 has a 3.5-inch TFT (320 x 240 pixels) touch screen.

It has built-in Web applications and a Digital Photo Frame. Polycom’s “My Info Portal” serves up stocks, news, sports, weather, and other streamed content directly to the phone’s screen.


Interactive Intelligence launches Quick Spin, a Cloud-based Unified Communications Trial Program

October 17, 2011



Interactive Intelligence today launched Quick Spin, a trial program that enables organizations to try their communications-as-a-service (CaaS) service for free. Interactive Intelligence gave me a demo of Quick Spin last week and I was pretty impressed. It features unified communications (UC), auto-attendant, presence, conferencing, desktop call control, unified messaging, ACD, skills-based routing, call and screen recording, workforce management, and more.

One really interesting feature included in Quick Spin is negative and positive word/phrase analysis. Using in-house developed real-time word spotting technology, Quick Spin can flag/route a negative call ("Speak to your manager", "Cancel service") to an appropriate agent or manager.



Rebtel Mobile VoIP app hops between 3G and WiFi/data Networks

October 14, 2011

Rebtel just launched version 2.0 of its free iPhone app, which allows users to make and receive free international calls using WiFi, 3G, or local minutes. TechCrunch discusses Rebtels's "new proprietary technology called “KeepTalking”, which allows users to transition (mid-call, mind you) from WiFi/3G to local minutes." VentureBeat also writes about them with this headline: "Rebtel’s Voice-over-IP app hops between data/voice networks, a first". Actually, they're not the first. Back in 2010 at ITEXPO Counterpath's Todd Carothers demo'ed switching a 3G voice call automatically to WiFi and a VoIP call to the cellular network.
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