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Hosted PBX Sales Increasing

Blame some of it on the TDm-to-IP transition, but a lot of the reason that Hosted PBX sales are increasing is...

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Intel Buys Way into Tablets While $99 may be Microsoft Sweet Spot

Intel recently reported earnings and the takeaway is the company is going to focus more on Android and ramp up subsidies to...

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Why the Fax Isn't As Outdated As You Think

I wrote a blog about faxing a few months ago and got an overwhelming response. Got some comments via email and...

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Camera-Phone Opportunity Exists for Samsung

There exists an opportunity for a superior camera with 10x or greater zoom coupled with the traditional things we are used to...

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Tomorrow is Purchase Google Glass Day!

If you are a wearable tech fan, tomorrow is a big day as you will finally be able to (if you are...

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The Secret Value of VoLTE

By Ed Elkin, Director, IP Platforms Marketing, Alcatel-Lucent 

At Mobile World Congress, I discovered that many network providers still aren’t aware of the broader business values of voice over LTE (VoLTE).  Most knew it readily includes HD voice for clearer calls and reduced background noise, which lets you feel like you’re standing right next to the other person. Most didn’t realize that, in unexpected ways, VoLTE helps them earn more money and increase efficiency.

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How to Kill Shadow IT: Step One - Recognize that Resistance is Futile

By Bryan R. Davies, Senior Director of Enterprise Communications Marketing, Alcatel-Lucent

The first step in resolving any problem is to make sure you understand the core issues. So here’s the crucial question for shadow IT: What is the biggest challenge it presents for your IT department?

Holding back the flood?  

Today’s flood of mobile devices and cloud services is making shadow IT a bigger headache than ever before. But it’s nothing new. It started with the first enterprise employee who ever put an application in place without the knowledge or approval of IT staff.
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Eco-Sustainability through Unified Physical Infrastructures

October 26, 2009

As businesses grow, they are faced with the inherent technological challenges that accompany the addition of both headcount and physical footprint - namely, the task of effectively integrating disparate systems and technologies to create a single, unified environment to enable collaboration, business process efficiency, and cost effectiveness.   This holds equally for large enterprises looking to consolidate several large data centers and for smaller, mid-market businesses looking to consolidate their facilities into a single corporate headquarters - like Thornhill, Ontario, Canada-based MMM Group did.   MMM Group had, over five years, grown organically and by acquisition, and had managed to make do by bandaging together its disparate networks and management platforms, but realized this was highly inefficient from a cost and a business process perspective. So, it made the strategic decision to build out a new facility to house the majority of its staff and technology under one roof and a single network architecture.   Of course, MMM Group needed a reliable solution that would provide it the performance and reliability it required, but it also needed to ensure operational efficiency and environmental awareness - but keys to long-term sustainability. Along with operational sustainability, scalability was a key consideration, so that its new data center would be able to accommodate expected continued growth, including system upgrade and expansion.   MMM Group chose Panduit as a partner for its data center build-out, primarily because its unified physical infrastructure approach closely aligned with MMM Group's own ideal of a single, converged network to manage and control all of its network-based systems, including communications, computing, power, control, and security. The goal was to provide a smarter physical infrastructure that would provide the foundation for reliable real-time access to the resources delivered by the logical infrastructure layer, including the integration of all of MMM Group's IP network, including VoIP, video and data, wireless connectivity, security systems, and building access control.   MMM Group, after struggling to achieve cost and operational efficiencies with its disparate staff and networks, realized that its continued success would be dependent upon its ability to build a flexible infrastructure that would ensure real-time availability of applications and services, maintain compliance with industry standards and regulations, reduce power and cooling costs, increase environmental awareness and long-term sustainability, and increase operational efficiency.   Read more about how Panduit helps mid-market enterprises evolve their infrastructures to accomplish all of these goals.

Panduit's Living Lab for UPI-based Data Centers

October 25, 2009

Green technology is quickly becoming a focus across enterprises - the question is, are businesses veiling their cost cutting measures as green initiatives or are they truly looking to become environmentally conscious. Panduit's vice president of global marketing Vineeth Ram, believes it's a combination of the two: nearly every business is focusing on the short term (i.e., cost reduction), but there is also increasing pressure to "do the right thing" from an environmental aspect, which actually delivers long-term savings in the way of sustainability.   In a recent video interview, Ram says that the key is really to turn "greenness" into a process, which is what Panduit is reinforcing with its unified physical infrastructure approach. Panduit recognizes that the tangible elements of green IT, like power and cooling conservation and footprint reduction, provide both short- and long-term benefits.   Panduit has built "green" into its overall approach to its data center products and solutions, including working with its partner ecosystem to create the most effective solutions for its customers, but Ram notes that, while it can deliver significant short-term benefits, the idea of a unified physical infrastructure is really designed to provide a long-term sustainability roadmap. This includes an integrated physical infrastructure that can easily adapt to new logical system components - a critical feature since physical layer components typically have a useful life three times that of logical layer elements.   Demonstrating the benefits of a UPI-based data center, Panduit has designed its new corporate headquarters using UPI-based solutions that span the entire facility and its various converged systems. Ram says the new facility will demonstrate what a unified physical infrastructure can deliver in terms of driving the benefits related to power and cooling, footprint reduction, efficiency, management, and sustainability,   "This is going to be living lab," he says. "It's going to be a proof point for the unified physical infrastructure."   For more on how Panduit is driving green technology through its UPI vision, watch the video with Vineeth Ram, and listen to a recent interview with Panduit's Anil Maheshwari about eco-sustainable enterprises.

Virtualization, Web 2.0 Calls for Greater Network Security

October 23, 2009

With increased acceptance of virtualization, cloud computing, Web 2.0, and software as service, physical infrastructure management is becoming more critical and will only continue to increase in importance.   However, laptop computing, remote workforces, messaging, and peer-to-peer Internet applications have widened the scope of security risks.   Roughly 16 percent of data runs through virtualized machines, which simulate multiple servers, therefore making them more efficient. Last year, there were 5.8 million virtualized servers; Gartner predicts that number to rise ten-fold by 2012, the Dow Jones recently reported.

The Message for Smart Data Centers Being Heard Loud and Clear

October 22, 2009

As the need to optimize the physical infrastructure through simplification, increased agility and operational efficiency comes into greater focus, it's clear the message for smart data centers and a unified physical infrastructure is resonating with enterprises.

I had the opportunity to speak recently with Panduit's Mike Pula, the company's analyst relations manager, and he explained how Panduit's relationship with industry leading advisor and research firm Gartner has formed a coalition to promote a reduction in risk for customers. Companies have the opportunity to ultimately turn today's improvements in IT infrastructure and process efficiency into business advantages in the near and far future.   "One of the key messages that both of us embrace is risk reduction for our clients," Pula said.

Exposing The Lying Behind The Fight Against Climate Change Action

October 20, 2009

How do you protect your profits when research emerges that what you make or how make your items causes or leads to death and destruction? You lie. Or more accurately you pay or finance others to lie for you.

That's what the tobacco companies did for decades, leading to countless painful deaths and needless suffering not just from lung cancer and emphysema but from fires started by matches and lit smoking materials by promoting a substance that former U.S.

Power and Cooling Optimization Becoming Increasingly Important to Data Center Managers

October 19, 2009

Recent research suggests that the cost of power and cooling in data centers is exceeding - or at least equal to - the cost of systems infrastructures (i.e., servers, storage, switches, and other network devices).  That trend is hardly surprising, given the next generation technologies being deployed consume exponentially more power than their predecessors.   In today's cost-focused environment, that means the ability to reduce power and cooling costs is as important as deploying next generation infrastructures required to meet expanding requirements placed on data centers, like virtualization capabilities. What it creates is a major cost and operational issue that IT executives are having to address - not only are they under intense pressure to reduce expenses, but they have to ensure their infrastructures can support their business needs.   Part of Panduit's vision for a unified physical infrastructure involves optimizing power and cooling resources to not only cut costs, but to maximize the potential of a data center's physical footprint in providing additional capabilities without having to invest in additional resources.   Certainly, there is a focus on the servers and switches themselves, but, as Panduit's vice president of global marketing Vineeth Ram explained in a recent video interview, there is much more room for optimization in the cabinets and rooms that house the hardware, which is where the physical infrastructure comes into play.   By deploying UPI-based solutions, such as those developed by Panduit and its industry partners, data centers will achieve more efficient cool air and exhaust flow, better cable and pathway management, more effective monitoring of power consumption, and the availability of power when and where it is needed.   Naturally, as with any savings figures, much depends on case specific, but Ram estimates its UPI-based solutions can help reduce power and cooling costs by 20-25 percent. He adds that as more active capabilities (i.e., monitoring and intelligent network devices) are added, Panduit's approach can have an even more significant impact on the bottom line.   To hear more from Ram on power and cooling trends in data centers, including how Panduit's collaborates with its partners in the R&D phase to ensure customers are able to enjoy saving and operational efficiencies immediately when new products are released and deployed, watch the video here. For more on Panduit's UPI vision and its solutions for next generation data centers, visit the Smart Data Centers micro-site.

Panduit and Oracle: Unifying the Entire Enterprise Infrastructure

October 18, 2009

For those you who have been following the latest developments at Panduit, you'll know a key focus for the company is driving efficiency in data center environments through the concept of a unified physical infrastructure. The concept allows for more efficient resource utilization and management, resulting in increased operational and cost efficiencies as well a more reliable and sustainable infrastructure.   A key part of the initiative is to help drive eco-sustainability across entire enterprise infrastructures, which is something Panduit itself has made part of its corporate culture for more than 50 years, according to Anil Maheshwari, Director of Marketing at Panduit.   "Panduit embraces 'lean and green' as a core value, and we partner with companies to drive agility, sustainability, efficiency, and, in particular the green IT element, which we drive through savings in power, cooling, space, and energy," Maheshwari told TMC's Amy Tierney in a recent podcast interview.   Panduit's solutions drive unification in the physical layer of the data center, but its work in driving that extends beyond its own solutions, and even beyond the physical infrastructure, to helping businesses unify their logical infrastructures as well.   Even in its own facilities, Panduit leverages Oracle's solutions to streamline operations and drive eco-sustainability. By working in a paperless order processing environment, for instance, it has saved more than 2.2 million pages of paper. Using Oracle software, is also is able to ensure conformity to ISO and ROHS standards for more efficient operations across its global facilities.   "Our company's whole culture has been around resource savings and efficiencies, so we have been a good example of a socially responsible and resource-efficient company," says Maheshwari.   As a testament to its use of Oracle software to drive eco-friendliness, Panduit was named a winner of Oracle's "Enable the Eco-Enterprise Awards" recently. Through a combination of Oracle software and its own UPI-based solutions, Panduit has established itself as a model for eco-sustainable businesses worldwide.   Business that are already using Oracle to unify and consolidate operations at the logical layer can now extend similar efficiencies to their physical infrastructures leveraging Panduit technologies to build on the savings and process improvements they achieve with Oracle. Combing solutions from the two companies, businesses can achieve a completely integrated network infrastructure across the entire enterprise.   "This award validates our strategy," Maheshwari told Tierney. "People are recognizing the value of UPI-based solutions to drive agility, efficiency, flexibility, reliability, sustainability. This helps us a lot in getting the word out."   To hear more about how Panduit is leveraging Oracle solutions to benefit its customers, listen to the podcast here, and for more on how Panduit is helping enterprises create more efficient and sustainable data centers, visit the Smart Data Centers micro-site on TMCnet.

Panduit's Inlet Duct System for Optimized Cooling in Data Centers

October 18, 2009

Data centers are rapidly becoming a more critical - perhaps the most critical - part of enterprises' overall infrastructures. They house the information and applications that are required to maintain operations and, as such, must not only provide realizable access to their resources, but are also becoming a key target for ways to increase operational efficiencies and reduce overall operational costs. Today's smart businesses have realized that the key to their long-term sustainability is a smart data center.   Panduit's Net-Access line of data center cabinets are part of the company's greater initiative to drive operational efficiencies, reliability, and cost-effectiveness in data centers, along with supporting Green IT initiatives globally. The Net-Access line is designed to optimize the benefits data centers received when they subscribe to Panduit's unified physical infrastructure vision and is a key component for supporting long-term sustainability.   The Net-Access line includes passive cooling solutions - those that don't require additional power resources to create greater efficiency - like passive ducting, which create as much as a 25 percent increase in thermal efficiency.   Recently, Panduit announced it new inlet duct system designed to increase the amount of cool air to 1RU switches by providing a direct path to the air intakes on the sides of the switches. This increase cooling capability will help efficiently cool switches in the Net-Access cabinets, which now are designed to house 45RU (as opposed to the traditional 42RU). The inlet duct system has also been proven compatible with Cisco's Catalyst 4948, 4928, and 4924 switches, providing an instant benefit to Panduit customers deploying Cisco infrastructure - Cisco is one of Panduit's key strategic partners is driving sustainability, reliability, and efficiency in data centers.   The new cabinet features provide added incentive to data centers looking to cut costs while driving operational efficiencies, and are a critical part of data center design and deployment, because they typically have three times the lifespan of the switches and servers they house. At a time when cost savings are as crucial to business success, the ability to save on power through more efficient cooling makes more sense than ever.   For more, read Erin Harrison's article on the inlet duct system, and visit the Smart Data Centers community for more on how Panduit is driving data center efficiency and reliability.

UPI Strategies for Smart Data Centers: 100Gig is the Future

October 18, 2009

As today's date centers begin to reach their capacity, migrating to a unified physical infrastructure will bring significant cost-savings, efficiencies and more uptime for customers. In a recent webcast featuring market segment partners Panduit and Cisco, experts delved into the "hot" topic of data center availability and how it correlates with unified physical infrastructure.

 

In order to expand your data center's footprint, there are several different logical and physical elements that tie together to make such a deployment successful. The current trend in data center availability - as explained by Panduit's Marc Naese - is the evolution from 1Gig to 10Gig, and the company is even now starting to tackle requests for 40Gig and 100Gig systems. To echo Naese, understanding what these capacities look like is absolutely critical to understanding your physical infrastructure needs.

To Go Green, Make Videoconferencing Affordable

October 13, 2009


Today's Globe and Mail newspaper has a great article written by Joanna Pachner on videoconferencing as a green technology. The article cites a December, 2008, report on "green IT" from Gartner Inc. points out that in some organizations, such as large global consultancies, business travel can produce nearly 50 per cent of the company's total greenhouse gas emissions. 

The story cited how noted Canadian scientist and environmentalist David Suzuki began substituting videoconferencing for travel when he realized how much emissions he was causing. That a round trip from Toronto, Ontario to London, England "spews a [metric] tonne of carbon into the atmosphere". 

Suzuki has been doing videoconferencing from the University of British Columbia, in Vancouver, BC, where he is based. And beginning in December the David Suzuki Foundation, which he formed, will install Cisco's TelePresence that gives high-end 'being there' functionality.
 
"When I saw TelePresence," Suzuki told the newspaper, "the illusion was very real.






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