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


wireless, WiFi, WiMAX, 3G, 4G, EVDO

New iPod touch supports VoIP

September 11, 2008

The Cult of Mac claims that the new iPod touch is VoIP-capable on the hardware side:
With 5 wires connected to the Touch headphone jack (instead of 4 on the previous model), the device now supports the external microphone included with some headsets, according to Kyle Wiens of iFixit, who fully dismantled an iPod Touch on Wednesday.
So who needs an AT&T-restricted iPhone? Course, you'll need to be in range of a Wi-Fi network to use VoIP on the iPod touch.

It is worth pointing out that this is not the first time someone has run VoIP on the iPod touch. Touchmods added a microphone hack to the older iPod touch version. Another group enabled a SIP softphone client for the iPod touch to use with the "hacked-in" microphone.

With the new iPod touch - no hacking required.

OnRelay Chooses open source sipXecs to Power Mobile Telephony

September 11, 2008

OnRelay today announced its support of sipXecs, an open source platform to provide low-cost business telephony with mobile extensions. OnRelay's Hosted MBX with sipXecs allows businesses to deploy a mobile office communication system (mobile PBX) with no additional investment in infrastructure: no desk phones, proprietary PBXs or cabling. With MBX the mobile phone is the only "desk phone" employees require.

Interviewing CEO Ivar Plahte he stated, "The reason why we chose sipXecs over Asterisk is the architecture and the philosophies behind the software was very similar to how we think and how we work here. Because we are pretty fanatic about object-oriented (programming).

Court bans VoIP app on iPhone

September 10, 2008

A ruling was just issued by the Higher Regional Court (Oberlandesgericht) of Hamburg, Germany banning VoIP on the Apple iPhone. Specifically, the sipgate VoIP app (image right) has been banned - all part of T-Mobile's ongoing fight to block VoIP on the iPhone.

Apparently, the court felt that sipgate would "lure" iPhone users into "jailbreaking" their iPhones. WTF? Banning software because it might entice customers to do something bad?

Buying an iPhone at Best Buy

September 8, 2008

Best Buy began selling the Apple iPhone on Sunday, becoming the first U.S. retailer to do so outside of Apple and AT&T stores. The Apple iPhone will be carrier in 970 Best Buy stores. Rich Tehrani and I decided to take a walk to Best Buy which is just down the street from TMC and take some pictures of their display.

Dell Goes to Europe with Vodafone

September 4, 2008

Vodafone and Dell have announced that Dell's Inspiron Mini 9 ultra-mobile notebook will be sold with built-in mobile broadband, exclusively through Vodafone stores and online, and directly from Dell, in key European markets.

Available in late September, the Inspiron Mini 9 is designed to deliver the utmost flexibility, reliability and speed for email and Internet browsing on-the-go without the need for an additional modem. (Or so they say.)

Digital nomads and avid web surfers alike (that's their wording, not mine) will be able to connect anytime, anywhere, whether on the road, or on-the-go, while surfing the Web, chatting with friends or enjoying their favorite online videos and music.

Wonder how long it will take for this to make its way to the U.S.?

And yes, there is a U.S. version that sounds pretty sweet -- reminds me of my old Compaq Contura Aero -- now there was a subnotebook (remember that category?)

There's lots more at Gizmodo.

Qik Live Streaming Mobile Video Now on HTC Phones

September 4, 2008

Qik, the popular live streaming mobile phone video app, is now available on a variety of new Windows Mobile enabled phones including select HTC devices.

New support includes:
• HTC Touch Dual
• HTC Touch Diamond
• AT&T Tilt
• Sony Ericsson Xperia X1

Qik added mobile video blogging to the Apple iPhone just last week. I was actually going to use Qik on my Verizon XV6700 HTC Apache Windows Mobile 6.1 device to live video blog Internet Telephony Expo in 2 weeks - but it isn't supported. While the HTC Apache isn't specifically listed, I'm going to try again in a few minutes to see if it works.

VoIP Supply Named to CRN's Fastest Growing Retailers - Proof VoIP a Fast Growing industry

September 2, 2008

Garrett Smith from VoIP Supply emailed me this morning expressing his excitement that "A VoIP pure play keeping up with a who's who of America's top retailers." Specifically, the company Garrett works for was named to CRN Magazine's Fastest Growing retailers listing VoIP Supply's retail business amongst the big boys like Best Buy, New Egg and PC Connection.

Out of the 15 companies listed, only one company posted better growth numbers then VoIP Supply.

A hearty congrats to VoIP Supply team! I'm sure I'll see some of you at Internet Telephony Expo (ITEXPO) in a couple weeks. I'm sure Garrett, who blogs for SmithonVoIP will be at Andy Abramson's Bloggers' Dinner that Andy puts together each show. I'll have to raise a toast to VoIP Supply's success.

Roasting AT&T over iPhone Problems

August 29, 2008

"A phone is only as good as the network it's on," said a full-page Verizon Wireless newspaper ad on Thursday, lobbing a shot at AT&T's 3G, or third generation, high-speed network.

(And ain't that the truth -- we know if well where I live!)

Apple sold more than a million iPhone 3G cellphones its first weekend -- with some stores running out -- and two million more since then, analysts say.

But its July debut has been nothing less than a public relations headache for AT&T, with eager buyers complaining about dropped calls and poor network connections.

Some fingers point to Apple, which has tried to deflect the complaints. But many others point to AT&T's cellular network.

Whatever the source of the problems, AT&T's rivals, long irritated by all the attention the iPhone has received, are on the attack and happy to exploit the discontent.

A Verizon executive sent an e-mail to Wall Street analysts last week: "So much for a 'new' way of doing business at the old AT&T -- your father's phone company." 

Get more at the New York Times here.

IEEE standardizes 801.11r fast Wi-Fi roaming

August 27, 2008

The IEEE has completed 802.11r, a standard that lets Wi-Fi devices roam quickly between wireless access points (WAP) and which improves the performance of VoIP on enterprise LANs.

Traditionally, 801.11 devices can roam from one access point to another, but it takes about 100ms to re-associate, and several seconds to re-establish authenticated connections using 802.1x. Not good for time-critical apps like VoIP.

According to InfoWorld, "the new standard, 802.11r, known as Fast Basic Service Set Transition, allows the network to establish a security and QoS state for the device at the new access point, before it roams between the two, so the transition can take place in less than 50ms - the standard required for voice roaming."

The article explains that vendors have traditionally either used lower security options on Wi-Fi VoIP (i.e. easily crackable WEP encryption) and put VoIP traffic on separate VLANs to protect the rest of the network. Other company have built networks where there is no roaming because all the access points are on the same channel.

The new IEEE 802.11r standard should help improve enterprise Wi-Fi VoIP functionality, in particular larger buildings.

Source: InfoWorld

Microsoft develops Vi-Fi (Vehicle Wi-Fi). VoIP while driving baby!

August 27, 2008

A new technology developed by Microsoft in alliance with the University of Massachusetts (UMASS), and the University of Washington has resulted in a new technology called Vi-Fi (Vehicle Wi-Fi). Vi-Fi solves the problem of hopping from one Wi-Fi wireless access point (WAP) to another when signal strength diminishes. According to the article, the goal of Vi-Fi could be to power VoIP calls, Internet, and radio in cars of the future.

Ironically, Andy wrote a controversial blog this week about VoIPing while flying (using Aircell) -- well now you can VoIP while driving too! Of course, I've been using VoIP over EVDO for some time now while driving.

Featured Events