Jim Machi : Industry Insight
Jim Machi

The Unique role of the Service Provider with a SmartHome

  As last week's blog described, a SmartHome is a complicated place today.  A service provider could tie all of these different...

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The SmartHome, The Service Provider, and Connectivity

The SmartHome market is important for consumers for many reasons - energy savings, additional security and improved quality of life to name...

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Part 3 of Pros and Cons of Hosted vs. CPE Phone Systems

In part 2 of this series I discussed price. Now let’s wrap up this series and talk about Unified Communications, features and...

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How to Prepare for The Future of Work

The future of work continues to change and the predictions of mass joblessness as a result of AI and robotic automation have...

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Pros and Cons of Hosted vs. On Premise Phone Systems (Part 2)

In Part 1 we discussed some of the considerations that would affect a cloud vs on-premise solution. Now I’d like to start...

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Pros and Cons of Hosted vs. On Premise Phone Systems

Purchasing communications infrastructure equipment for your business, whether it’s data routers, SBCs or phone communication systems is difficult.  There are many vendor...

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Making Sense of Blockchain and Nothing Can Be Hidden in it?

The Bitfury Group and First Block Capital, on January 11, 2018, announced they had invested in Emercoin and would support the ground-breaking...

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Creating Mobile Feral Hogs!

March 16, 2010

All of these network and network infrastructure improvements, as well as likely tiered pricing options in the future, will help get us to improved mobile network service. The mobile internet marches on, and there will be increasingly more and more usage of it, and technology will solve the problem ultimately. Just don't expect the ride to be so smooth.
  I've read a few articles recently about domesticated pigs who get loose, and in the wild very soon turn into wild boars, eating everything in their path. I know they are a big problem in Texas and Arkansas and many other states, and have started to become a problem in southern New Jersey. I actually saw one of these beasts a long time ago in Hawaii when I was hiking. The thing was huge. 
Kind of like some of us who are going hog wild on our mobile networks?   We were all nice and pink like a domesticated pig and used our mobile phones according to the known statistical analysis, but now there are some people using mobile networks all the time, such as streaming Pandora all day onto their smartphones. And the mobile wild hog is born!
One response I've seen about the mobile network issues has been more and more PR from the operators in the form of articles and data coming out about the small percent of users who "hog" the networks by taking full advantage of their flat monthly data fee.   These people, they say, are the mobile feral hogs and these people are causing YOUR mobile network access to be in jeopardy. And in some respects they are right. But in other respects, some people are just utilizing their pay plans to the fullest, right?
So what can be done about this?   When I wrote my blog about attending Mobile World Congress a couple of weeks ago, two themes I mentioned were LTE and Femtocells. LTE is all-IP network, and depending on uplink/downlink measurements, is between 8 and 20 times faster than 3G HSPA. So it will help to reign in these feral hogs living on the mobile broadband network. And given the increased simplicity in its network architecture (being more flat), LTE should be lower CAPEX/OPEX for the operators. So it should all be good, right? Well, sure, but LTE is not exactly right around the next corner.



Cloud Computing - The Terminator Movies Had it Right!

February 24, 2010

In one of my last blogs, I talked about why the concept of Cloud Computing has taken hold now and what's involved from a technical and non-technical standpoint. Cloud Computing sounds so easy, so all companies should just do this, right? Wrong. There are perspectives out there that say "we aren't ready for this yet." And people should respect these perspectives. There is a lingering concern about outsourcing of key data by IT departments and whether the data would be "safe." That's why I say whether the march is inexorable or not. The first successful hosting apps that I remember were really outsourcing and hosting of the website. Security of key data wasn't as big an issue since, well, what you're putting on the website is for all to see.   Let's take a basic enterprise application, such as voice mail. Is voice mail something that should be totally secure? It's not something for me to answer since it depends on your company, depends on your job, and depends on who is leaving you voice mails. We've seen some famous people recently who wished voice mails didn't become public.   So let's look at the data you have on premise in your office. Is the data there really more secure than in some big hosted "cloud" facility? That's also really hard to say, as it likely depends on each specific facility. I have read many instances in the newspaper relating to break-ins at some office where computers are stolen, and on those computers are employee social security numbers and the like. On the other hand, Los Angeles decided to move it's email to Google and was met with some criticism due to security concerns.   Both are real issues and both will remain valid. Data is not automatically more secure on your premise compared to a "cloud" facility though.   Additionally, there are still issues to be worked regarding interoperability. If you create an application using Infrastructure as a Service, and you call on some remote "function" as I called it above, what if that company goes out of business and the "function" disappears? What if some other "function" suddenly replaces it out of the blue, but it's not exactly the same? All of a sudden, your application may not work, or may not work as it used it, and you'd be somewhat flummoxed by it all.   And, with regards to uptime, if you are sharing a computer system through virtualization with other applications, or simply being in a facility and the facility has power issues, someone else's problem may affect you. So it's not all nirvana.   And finally, if you are a fan of The Terminator movies, Skynet is the epitome of Cloud Computing. From Software as a Service to Machine to Machine computing to Machine thinking to Machines as a Service, The Terminator movies show a possible ending to all this Cloud Computing. The Cloud gets smart and The Cloud wants to be the master. So let's all beware of Cloud Computing.   My point is, there will always be good reasons for people to use Cloud Computing, and there are always going to be good reasons for people to use premise computing. As time goes on though, Cloud Computing becomes more and more of an option. It's certainly more of an option now than it was five years ago, and it will be even more of an option in five years than it is today.

The Fire is Back at the Fira

February 24, 2010

Mobile World Congress, held at the Fira in Barcelona (Catalonian for fairgrounds is what I understand the word to mean), is always an exciting time for me and our company. Everyone is having back-to-back-to-back meetings and you feel the excitement of the coming year's business. You gotta love the portable booths in the middle of the grounds, including the multiple story portable restaurants. This year's energy certainly felt better than last year.

Snowflakes, Bad Internet, Barcelona and the Video Convergence Forum

February 17, 2010

By the time you read this, I will have been in Barcelona for a week. While I was coming to Barcelona anyway for Mobile World Congress, I came early since the Video Convergence Forum was launched the Thursday before MWC started. Next week, I will report on Mobile World Congress.
  So what's with the Video Convergence Forum? Why did Dialogic feel so strongly about it that we wanted to be a founding member? 
  As readers of this blog know, Dialogic has been a proponent of enabling mobile video applications.

Cloud Computing - What Factors Make it Viable?

February 10, 2010

In a previous blog, I discussed the early stages of cloud computing, and now I'll touch on why this concept has taken hold now, or shall we say, why cloud computing is at least more viable now. First of all, we have better technology now than we ever did. The networks are better than ever, allowing access to remote data faster. At Dialogic, we use Salesforce.com, perhaps the most famous and successful software as a service provider, and I don't see any difference between speed of access to this data versus access to on-site data through our internal network.

Cloud Computing - Those Clouds Aren't Pure White!

February 3, 2010

Most people in the industry today talk about cloud computing as a fait accompli, as something already done and deployed. I saw a lot of this kind of "breathing your own fumes" thinking with regard to VoIP around the year 2000. We were all going to our own little inbred kind of conferences, but in reality, VoIP was just starting to get deployed! There was so much more work to do, not the least of which was getting the technology into the deployed telephony products.

Ah, So Why End POTS and PSTN?

January 27, 2010

Last week, I discussed reading the report AT&T sent to the FCC explaining why they support an orderly end of the POTS and PSTN network. One point they made is about transitioning funds that would normally support universal telephony service to support the broadband mandate. 
  Due to consumer movement to VoIP and wireless anyway, POTS and the PSTN costs per user are increasing every day. If you look at these networks as a fixed cost, and if there are fewer users, then the cost per user by definition has to go up. And AT&T is arguing that because of the current set of government regulations in place, the industry is effectively prolonging these networks and causing an investment shift away from broadband.

Hark! The End of POTS and PSTN!

January 20, 2010

Last week, I was traveling quite a bit and during some airplane time, I read AT&T's comments to NBP Public Notice #25, more easily recognized as comments from AT&T regarding "Hark!, the end of the POTS and PSTN Network!" I found it by going online and typing in some words similar to the words I hyperlinked above. Like me, I'm sure you at least saw some headlines about this since it got quite a bit of coverage. I decided to go read it myself and see what they sent in to the FCC. It's certainly an interesting read and I have to say AT&T makes some very compelling arguments about the end of the PSTN network.
  AT&T discusses an orderly transition and retirement of the PSTN.

The Geeks Converge and Hear About HD

January 13, 2010

Last week, I attended the Consumer Electronics Show to speak on the HD Voice Summit panel. My first impression of CES was frustration given it was just impossible to get broadband bandwidth from my hotel during "normal" hours. Too many geeks, like me, in one place, at one time, trying to do e-mail. Since I remained on Eastern time, I did manage to get some things done in the morning.
  At any rate, most of the participants during the day were in one form or another either endpoint manufacturers or service providers.

A Wi-Fi Happy New Year from Times Square!

January 6, 2010

I was in New York City a couple of days before New Year's Eve to check out the New York Christmas scene. I found myself walking through a tourist filled Times Square. Some celebrity was doing an interview there. I didn't look to see who it was because all I wanted to do was get out of there, since since all I could hear was screaming voices.
  In the midst of this I looked up and I saw a sign that said, "Free Wi-Fi now in Times Square." I couldn't believe it.
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