Jim Machi : Industry Insight
Jim Machi

Wearable Tech Expo 2014 Kicking off in NYC

My team is at the Jacob Javits Center setting up for Wearable Tech Expo 2014 which will take place Wednesday and Thursday...

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When Does WebRTC Need a Media Server? Reason #7

Tsahi Levent-Levi’s white paper, “Seven Reasons for WebRTC Server-Side Processing,” details a variety of WebRTC-related scenarios that necessitate a media server....

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How signaling spikes affect networks: 3 real-world examples

By: Josee Loudiadis, Director of Network Intelligence, Alcatel-Lucent

Data and signaling growth are usually good news for network operators, since growth often translates into higher revenues. But when growth is averaged over a month or quarter, the daily highs and lows of network activity are smoothed out. And signaling spikes remain hidden within the averages. These spikes can overwhelm available signaling capacity, which impairs the customer experience, as well as the operator’s reputation.

What happens when a spike occurs? Typically, a CPU Overload alarm appears on various mobile nodes. And the Network Operations Center (NOC) immediately starts praying that the burst is short-lived and doesn’t go over maximum peak-rate capacity. Because when that happens, all consumers are denied service access. Then, the process of identifying the source of the problem begins. This can be arduous, because it often involves applications completely out of NOC control. And the issue can’t be resolved easily without solid network analytics that enables engagement with application and device developers.

That’s the reason signaling information is a crucial part of the Alcatel-Lucent Mobile Apps Rankings report and why LTE World 2014 devotes an entire pre-conference day to the topic. It’s also why this blog offers a closer look at how some real-world disruptive signaling spikes got started — and were finally resolved.

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The Expanding Channel Programs

Not only do I see more cloud service providers looking to the channel for sales, I see other channel programs expanding....

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When Does WebRTC Need a Media Server? Reason #6

In a recent blog about the current state of WebRTC, I mentioned that readers should check out an excellent white paper...

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The Six Degrees of Mobile Data Plan Innovation: It's Not All About Data- Mobile Voice and Messaging Share Plans Offer Plenty of Appeal

Alcatel-Lucent’s Rich Crowe continues the Six Degrees of Mobile Data Plan Innovation blog series by examining the degree to which consumers are interested in share plans that include unlimited voice and messaging but don’t include data.

The last Six Degrees blog explored consumer attitudes toward two different mobile share plan options: sharing data only and sharing voice, messaging and data. This blog will explore attitudes toward a 3rd option: sharing unlimited voice and messaging — but not data — across multiple devices or subscribers.

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200G Optical Networks: What you need to know

By: Earl Kennedy, IP Transport Product Marketing, Alcatel-Lucent

Optical network operators have already made the move to 100G. But skyrocketing bandwidth demand means many are already pondering what’s next. With a 200G optical solution hitting the market, you probably have questions about when to move to 200G optical – and what you need to know when you make that move.

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The Top 5 Mobile and IP Predictions for 2011

December 21, 2010

Last week, I looked back at the 10 most impactful telecom advances of the last decade.  In this blog, I will look forward and make some predictions for what 2011 holds.   And then to differentiate myself, in one year’s time, I’ll score myself and see if I got anything remotely right!

Top 10 Telecom Advancements of the Past 10 Years

December 14, 2010

Last week, I was asked by Voice & Data  in India to contribute to an article they’re publishing in January on the “Top 10 Technologies in the last decade that have Transformed the Telecom Sector.”  This was an interesting exercise for me, and really got me thinking.

While 10 years is not a huge amount of time, the past 10 years have quite possibly been the most incredible in terms of technological achievements in the telecom industry since the invention of the telephone. Yes, I know moving to digital from analog and the first wireless networks were innovative, but when looking at an entire 10 year span, the advancements are astounding.  

The Phone as Everything

December 7, 2010

In the US, your mobile phone is kind of your lifeblood – it can be your on ramp to the internet, your communication vehicle with your kids via texting, your only phone, your TV, your watch (who even remembers wearing a watch!), and your boarding pass.  And as per my blog last week, it can even comparison shop for you!   I’ve even read some articles where the hotel industry is enabling your phone to be your key to your hotel room so you don’t even have to wait in line to check in! 

Using Your Phone to Help with Comparison Shopping

December 1, 2010

For the past few years, I’ve enjoyed Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving in the US when the best shopping sales are) from the relative safety of my computer.  For yes, even the Black Friday deals are found on the internet.  But I did venture out.  And amid the chaos, as I stood around waiting for my wife to find something, I noticed someone else doing something seemingly very strange. 

Bridging 3G and 4G Services in Budapest

November 24, 2010

As I wrote in my last blog, last week I was in Budapest.  Budapest is a great place.  Turns out some time ago, there were two different cities on the banks of the Danube – one called Pest and one called Buda.  They were then unified to create a single city called….drum roll please…Budapest! 

Budapest, Dialogic EMEA Connections, and how our industry doesn't really change while it's changing

November 19, 2010

Earlier this week, I was in Budapest for our EMEA Connections event.  If you want a very good overview of the event, please read Rich Tehrani’s blog at http://blog.tmcnet.com/blog/rich-tehrani/4g/dialogic-connections-2010-live-blog.html.  Rich was not able to blog live while he was in action (he was interviewing Dialogic’s Doug Sabella and Kevin Cook in a talk-show format) and he was a little leery of me blogging for him from his computer, but he did a great job .  I think Rich has a future in TV and/or politics!

One of the underlying themes at the event is that while we are undergoing tremendous change within the telecommunications industry, because of various technological enhancements such as broadband wireless, cloud computing and VoIP -- who will be the big service providers in 10 years, how will people generally communicate in 10 years, what are the revenue models going to be -- there is huge opportunity for everyone in this change. 

Mobile Coupons

November 17, 2010

In my last blog, I described a location-based advertisement example with an example of a coupon for your morning coffee.  It got me thinking about that status of mobile coupons.

The first thing I did was see what was going on in the web about this.  The Mobile Marketing Association offers a good overview of Mobile Coupons and how they work. And predictably, there is a website called Mobile Coupons.com (http://www.mobilecoupons.com/). 

Follow-Up on Context-Aware Services

November 10, 2010

If Location-Based Services indeed might be moving to be more “context” based (and in last week’s blog I described “context” as having to involve some kind of database to make the service more relevant to you), then are there any potential privacy issues associated with this?  Likely there are, and many of them can be resolved if the user wants “context” and therefore opts in to obtaining this context since the user would see a value to it.

With the advertisement example, I can see a user opting in for certain types of restaurant ads or promotions. 

The Difference Between Location-Based Services and Context-Aware Location-Based Services

November 3, 2010

I've written about Location-Based Services a few times, most recently on September 28th, and I came across the term Context-Aware Location-Based Services. In doing research on this topic, I found the top results from a web search are some academic papers, including this academic paper which goes into much detail. But there are many of them and it appears this is hot academic research topic.   If I had to boil it down, the difference between LBS and Context-Aware LBS would involve a database of some sort that "knows" something about you. For instance, in the LBS example I showed in the September 28th blog, an advertisement for a restaurant appeared on the user's mobile phone. Perhaps that advertisement was sent to anyone within a certain amount of blocks of the restaurant. That would be an example of a location-based advertisement. But perhaps also that ad only appeared on that user's mobile phone since the owner of that mobile phone had been there before and/or had opted in to some future advertising promotion. So the ad appearing was much more in context.    I can also envision some kind of service that is integrated with your calendar. For example, I am constantly changing the type of ring tone of my mobile phone depending on what I'm doing. Why do I really need to do that - why can't the mobile phone integrate with my calendar and change the ring tone to either what I've done in the past in certain situations, or change it depending on the type of activity I'm doing on my calendar.

WiFi Offload from 3G

October 27, 2010

In the past couple of weeks, I've had a couple of experiences with using the WiFi feature of my Blackberry. Last week, I wrote about attending Interop in New York and when I attended the keynotes, which were deep within the recesses of the Javitz Convention center, my cell phone dropped to EDGE. So during one of the keynotes (that I didn't find particularly interesting), I started playing around with my Blackberry to get the WiFi going.  Whoa! It was awesome. I got onto the internet and I was flying. Definitely faster than 3G from my perspective. My email also worked great. Definitely a good experience and I will likely use WiFi more often now with my Blackberry when I'm in areas where I can get it.   On a sour note, I also tried WiFi at the new Giants Stadium during the Lions game on October 17. I know officially it's called "New Meadowlands Stadium" but I still call it Giants Stadium. I had read articles about this stadium being the most technologically advanced and having a stadium-wide public WiFi. Well, I found WiFi when I checked. But all the networks I found needed access codes, which doesn't make too much sense to me. I don't know what they're thinking with that.
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