Brendan Read : The Readerboard
Brendan Read
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| Contact Center/CRM Views and Analysis

VoLTE Versus WebRTC: I didn't know it was a battle

When I talk to customers, they often ask about how WebRTC compares to voice over LTE (VoLTE), and which technology “will...

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These 3 Do Everything Together

At a few shows, including the latest ITEXPO, the 3 big cablecos - TWC, Comcast and Charter - share a booth....

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Modems? In This Day and Age?

Not so many years ago, the only way to connect to the Internet was via a modem. You would use your...

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How to Speed Small Cell Site Acquisition on a Large Scale

By: Jean Jones, Director, Wireless Marketing, Alcatel-Lucent

Outdoor small cells are now widely recognized as a great solution for expanding mobile capacity and coverage. And their use is expected to grow sevenfold by 2018.[1] So here’s the next big question: How can you put these cells where they’re needed, faster and at lower cost?

Maybe you’ve already encountered deployment issues, including difficulties with small cell site acquisition. According to an Informa Telecoms & Media survey, nearly 60% of mobile operators say that deployment problems are their biggest small cell challenge.[2] In other words, operators’ top concerns are not about small cell technologies or products. Instead, they’re about the practical aspects of getting these cells up and running on light posts, utility poles, bus stops, buildings and other street locations.

This blog looks at a collaborative approach that makes these deployment processes faster and easier. Alcatel-Lucent adopted these methods for our Metro Cell Express Site Certification Program. And we’re discussing them here, because this business model earned a top award in the small cell innovation leadership category.

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HumansFirst ColdSmoke Lets You Buy with your Smartphone

While speech-technology has come a long way, we still haven’t entered the world of Star Trek reruns where the computer can do...

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Structural Separation via REIT Equals Zero Taxes

Windstream got the endorsement of the IRS to transfer their assets - copper and fiber plant - to a REIT and...

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Connected Cars as an Everyday Lifestyle

By: Ellis Lindsay, General Manager, Customer Experience Solutions, Alcatel-Lucent 

I drive to work and back home in my car every day. I tune in to a radio station for traffic news and upcoming events nearby. Like many of you I’m sure, this is a typical everyday activity. And like never before, we are connected to our home, our families, our phones, our work and our friends in a network that seems to be always on. Shouldn’t we be in a lifestyle where we are consistently connected to the everyday activities in our lives? Well, let me introduce you to the world of Connected Cars. Full Story »

Web Anti-Fraud Measure Ineffective

February 5, 2007

An article in the New York Times today discusses a recent study by MIT and Harvard that examines the efficacy of the technology called site-authentication images.  (If you do online banking, you may be familiar with this technology. You are asked to choose an image, and create a phrase that goes along with the image, and you are advised not to proceed with your online transaction unless you see both the image and the phrase when you log in.)

As it turns out, there's actually nothing wrong with the technology itself, it's merely that users tend to disregard the directives. During the course of the study, 58 out of 60 users logged into their accounts anyway, though they did not see their picture and phrase.

Groundhog Fails To See Shadow

February 2, 2007

Vista's Speech Rec Troubles?

February 1, 2007

Microsoft has admitted that it could be "technically possible" (though unlikely) for Vista's speech recognition capabilities to be maliciously used.

The scenario envisioned involves malicious e-mails or audio on Web sites telling the OS to "delete" or otherwise alter a user's files against the user's wishes.

Microsoft has said that the possibility is remote, however:

"The exploit scenario would involve the speech recognition feature picking up commands through the microphone such as 'copy', 'delete', 'shutdown', etc. and acting on them," blogged a Microsoft security researcher. The blogger added that it would require a perfect alignment of circumstances: the user not being in the room to hear the audio, the microphone and speakers being turned on, the microphone being aligned just right and the clarity of the audio being perfect.

TES







Dell CEO Resigns

January 31, 2007

Hosted Speech Takes Off

January 31, 2007

During the first few years of speech applications for the call center, we all admired them great...from afar. Few companies (with the exception of large rich organizations like banks and airlines) could afford them, or had the manpower to administer them.

That's why speech solutions have mixed so well with the on-demand delivery model. Costs, complexity and the sheer "fear factor" of speech can be greatly reduced...by keeping the headaches on someone else's doorstep while still being able to reap the benefits.

Speech solutions provider Fluency Voice (www.fluencyvoice.com) announced today that it is experiencing great demand for the hosted (on-demand) version of its speech recognition solution as well as its traditional on- premise version.  During the last three quarters alone, Fluency states that it has seen an 81 percent growth in sales of its Virtual Speech Agent (VSA) Suite solution delivered as an on-demand service compared with the same period in 2006.



Colds In The Workplace

January 30, 2007

An article in the Washington Post today repeats that old "common cold costs money to the workplace" mantra by stating that, "An estimated $40 billion each year, according to a 2003 economic analysis by the University of Michigan for both direct and indirect costs for medical treatment and lost work time. As the researchers noted, that's a higher economic burden than some more-serious conditions impose."

The common cold has been with the human race longer than fire and poking things with sticks. So why do we presume there is such a thing as a "cold-free" human race, and chalk up "lost work time" to it, as if there is such an attainable state as a cold-free workplace?

How can a thus-far unpreventable activity (suffering from a cold) built into the human race be "costing" us anything?



Customer Service Madness

January 29, 2007

Here's a little personal anecdote I just had to share:

I'm switching health insurance companies as of February 1st. When I completed the paperwork, I indicated my primary care physician's name and address on the forms. The health insurance company sent me a letter, correctly identifying my primary care physician by name, but indicated that before they could activate my account, they had to know his ID number.

That would be the ID number that the insurance company assigned to him.

They're asking ME for it.

Because apparently, I know better than they do what provider number they assigned to my doctor.

I looked up the number...on their Web site, mind you...and called their call center.

To give them the number.

Their number that they assigned to my doctor.

Next week, I'm going to anticipate a call from my bank asking me what their check clearing policies are. I'll be sure to keep a copy of the bank's customer service manual around so I can tell them when they ask.

It's enough to make you wonder whether anyone in Corporate America has even half a brain turned on nowadays.

TES



















Post-Mortem Service Charges?

January 29, 2007

A friend sent this e-mail to me today. I have no idea if it's true or just one of the many frequently circulated urban legends that strike a chord in all of us. But knowing what I know about many companies' customer service policies, I can believe that somewhere, some time...it just might have happened.

An elderly lady died in January last year, and a large financial services/credit card company billed her for February and March for their annual service charges on her credit card, and added late fees and interest on the monthly charge. The balance had been $0.00, after the fees were added, it totaled about $60.00.

A family member placed a call to the bank.



Interview With The Hacker

January 26, 2007

Voxify Announces New CEO; Chairman Of The Board

January 26, 2007

This week, speech technology provider Voxify announced that John Gengarella has joined the company as President and CEO.  According to the company, Gengarella brings with him "over two decades of technology leadership and visionary business practices with highly successful enterprise software businesses to lead Voxify through its current stage of aggressive growth." He is a former Siebel/Oracle CRM executive.

Voxify also announced that Carol Snell has been appointed to the position of Chairman of the Board of the company. Snell is, according to the release, "an accomplished entrepreneur and CEO bringing more than three decades of executive management, operations, sales and marketing experience to this key role at Voxify."  Prior to this appointment, Snell served as an active member of the Voxify Board of Directors since joining in 2002.

Visit Voxify's Web site at www.voxify.com.

TES







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