Jim Machi : Industry Insight
Jim Machi

IBM, Mitel, Wearable Tech round out Latest ITEXPO News

Its been an amazing ITEXPO so far - wow. In case you missed some of the happenings from day 1, here are...

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3 Reasons UC Deployments Fail

Just getting ink on a Unified Communications deal is just the beginning. So many deployments go wrong or worse the company...

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Small Cells are Key to Attracting and Keeping SMB and Large Enterprise Customers

By: Peter Bernstein, TMCnet Senior Editor

To say that operators of macro-cellular physical networks are facing all type of challenges these days would be an understatement.  These range from spectrum scarcity issues, competitive pricing pressures, the need to build out LTE networks ASAP as platforms for new services and to meet the insatiable appetite of users for things like streamed and real-time video, getting ready for the Internet of Things (IoT) etc.  They also are busy figuring out how to keep users, particularly enterprise users on their smart devices always and all ways on their networks in an increasingly fickle world where alternatives abound, including for value-added traffic lost to Over-the-Top (OTT) providers.  

It is to keep enterprise customers on the mobile service provider networks for enhanced services that good in-building wireless solutions are seen as both a powerful business tool and a competitive advantage.  This is particularly true when it comes to retaining small-to-medium business customers (SMBs).

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Changing the SIM game

The iPad Air 2 with Wi-Fi + Cellular models comes with a SIM  that “gives you the flexibility to choose from...

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WebRTC and the Enterprise

I was reading an article titled, “How WebRTC can serve the Enterprise” but when I originally saw the headline I thought...

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Jeff Pulver, Andy Abramson, Craig Walker, Alon Cohen, Mike Tribolet, Andy Voss and Danny Windham at ITEXPO Next Week

Panel to celebrate 20 years of IP communications/VoIP and discuss its future. Next week at the 29th ITEXPO, I get the pleasure...

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Alcatel-Lucent CEO Michel Combes on Importance of Bringing Ultra-Broadband to Africa

By: Peter Bernstein, TMCnet Senior Editor

It may be almost cliché to say we live in a global economy, but many times when globalization is discussed the focus is on developed and emerging markets and not that often, if at all, on under-developed regions.  In fact, in the past few years until the recent drop in oil prices, much of the financial community’s and economic development interests has been focused on the BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).  This leaves out not just most of South America, but the promising rest of Africa which contains a wealth of rare minerals and other natural resources waiting to be literally and figuratively mined.

However, for most of the African continent countries to move from under-developed status, along with toward political stability and having a educated citizenry, infrastructure needs to be in place which it currently is not. This means not just giving the populace access to clean water and energy, but in a digital world ubiquitous and affordable access to businesses and individuals to high-speed broadband communications is now not just a foundation but a pre-condition that is essential for moving ahead.  

In this regard it is enlightening, refreshing and significant that Alcatel-Lucent CEO Michel Combes recently wrote a corporate blog stressing the company’s interest in working with governments and commercial interests to help accelerate economic development across the continent.  This about not just about the Oscar winning movie of several years ago “Out of Africa”, but is also about around, into and across Africa. 

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LTE / Diameter Interworking (Part 2 of 2)

April 11, 2013

Two days ago, I wrote a blog about Diameter Interworking use cases.  If you are a network operator, are these issues real? Well, they’re real enough that the 3GPP and GSMA have identified elements called Diameter Routing Agent (DRA),  Diameter Edge Agent (DEA), and Diameter Interworking Function (IWF), which is more closely aligned to the interworking described above.

Given that these issues are real, how do you address them?  For starters, operators need a box that connects the carrier LTE/IMS and policy control environment to existing 2G/3G/Wi-Fi and back office environments.

LTE / Diameter Interworking (Part 2 of 2)

April 11, 2013

Two days ago, I wrote a blog about Diameter Interworking use cases.  If you are a network operator, are these issues real? Well, they’re real enough that the 3GPP and GSMA have identified elements called Diameter Routing Agent (DRA),  Diameter Edge Agent (DEA), and Diameter Interworking Function (IWF), which is more closely aligned to the interworking described above.

Given that these issues are real, how do you address them?  For starters, operators need a box that connects the carrier LTE/IMS and policy control environment to existing 2G/3G/Wi-Fi and back office environments.

LTE / Diameter Interworking (Part 1 of 2)

April 9, 2013

Last week, I wrote a blog about Diameter protocol and its application use cases.  Since LTE uses it as a signaling protocol, operators have a need to interwork Diameter with the signaling technologies used in other mobile networks. This has given rise to the Diameter Interworking Gateway function, which moved onto the center stage at Mobile World Congress this year. It’s a critical element to enable the successful rollout of LTE and a seamless user experience across different networks.

WebRTC Webinar Q&A #1 "Is WebRTC 10 years too late?"

April 4, 2013

“Is WebRTC 10 years too late?”

To properly answer this question, one needs to take a position.  One position is to assume that all the VoIP “stuff” that came before Web Real Time Communication (WebRTC) is kind of useless.  But moving to a world where SIP, G.711, and H.264 are the dominant real-time communication protocols and codecs over IP networks is not useless. 

Diameter Use Cases

April 2, 2013

Diameter is the key signaling protocol used in IMS and LTE networks that enable applications running on those networks to authenticate, authorize and charge. In other words, your mobile applications, when running on these networks, are using Diameter protocol in the background to enable you to utilize the many apps on your smartphone or tablet. This includes, for example, a location-based service type of application (such as Foursquare or Yelp), or mobile payment (such as Square), or an Internet purchase (from an app store online retailer like Amazon).

Given the huge amount of smartphones and tablets out there that are either now running on LTE networks are that are expected to be LTE-enabled in the future, I predict that will be a big increase in Diameter signaling traffic.

My Mobile Device History

March 26, 2013


As some of you readers know, I have been an avid Blackberry user for some time. That time has now past.  I am an equal opportunity device person, and have used Motorola, Nokia and Blackberry devices.  It was time for a new one.


The Contact Center's Continual Transition

March 19, 2013



The contact center is undergoing continual change as companies strive to make their operations more efficient and cost-effective.  This is one of the reasons the contact center has always been an innovator and a driver for new technologies, from VoIP to Web integration to speech recognition.  Now, contact centers are undergoing still further transformation because access to them is coming more and more from smartphones and smartdevices. Contact center operators must look at feasible ways to maximize investments while also integrating modern, media-rich communications that give customers more options.



The Contact Center's Continual Transition

March 19, 2013



The contact center is undergoing continual change as companies strive to make their operations more efficient and cost-effective.  This is one of the reasons the contact center has always been an innovator and a driver for new technologies, from VoIP to Web integration to speech recognition.  Now, contact centers are undergoing still further transformation because access to them is coming more and more from smartphones and smartdevices. Contact center operators must look at feasible ways to maximize investments while also integrating modern, media-rich communications that give customers more options.



Mobile Congestion and Radio Blogging and Podcasting

March 12, 2013

Over a month ago, I participated in a radio blog / podcast with Tech in Twenty.  The theme was mobile congestion.  Please listen to the 20 minute broadcast/podcast/radio interview since it was riveting! Seriously, it was fun, the interviewers Luis and Jennifer asked good questions and I think the interview is interesting. 

Mobile World Congress 2013 Recap

March 4, 2013


Last week, I posted a first day report about Mobile World Congress 2013.  Since that first hectic day they improved the efficiency of the trains to the MWC site, the show really got into full swing and I was able to walk around a little to see the show. 

Here are some key trends I picked up:

1.  



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