Does the cloud have challenges you should be aware of? Is IoT the future? If so, how should carriers react? Weill WebRTC change how companies communicate internally? With customers? Will SIP trunking evolve or become obsolete? What is the future for communications?
These are just some of the important answers you'll get from reading the following interview with respected telecom analyst Gary Audin. A frequent speaker at ITEXPO, I have noticed the sessions he presents are seeing larger and larger crowds.
It made sense to me that if so many people want to hear what he has to say live, they likely want to read his insights as well. Here is the result of a recent interview I conducted with Gary.
What is the future of SIP Trunking?
For the time being, SIP trunking will continue to grow especially for intra and inter enterprise communications. As I look into the future of the IP transition from the PSTN, I wonder if SIP trunking will be just another piece of the evolution. Instead of standing out like it does today, it is possible that nearly every enterprise and SMB location will have an IP trunk. SIP may just be the signaling protocol that is commonly used. Another consideration is that SIP trunking will start to handle all the non-voice and non-video devices that reside on the PSTN. Near term it does not look likely.
Will IoT change the telecom landscape?
IoT is about billions of physical objects and devices. They can be network connected over short range wireless, Wi-Fi, and cellular networks and wired networks. They may be connected to special sensor networks or utilize RFID.
The wireless service providers will have to reconsider the way they charge for data. Much of the traffic will be short messages delivered periodically rather than randomly. A utility company may want a special data plan for its cell connected meter’s network use. Will this produce a whole series of special pricing arrangements since the IoT object will not be a cell phone or tablet? What network QoS should be given to the collected data transmission such as medical or emergency information?
Service providers will need much more bandwidth, both wired and wireless. The overhead for the short messages will be high because the messages themselves will be only tens of bytes long. The transmission overhead could be as high as 50% for IoT data.
The fiber networks will continue to be expanded. The problem is that for every increase in available bandwidth, there seems to be data generation that quickly consumes the available bandwidth. Network transmission capacity and routers, switches, and interface cards need to keep up with the bandwidth demand.
One of the outcomes of IoT is the evolution of the industrial Internet. The industrial Internet is an overlay on the existing Internet--not a new parallel network. It stands above the individual devices, enabling the remote control of a system, rather than just the devices. The industrial Internet can be used to optimize a system's operation to produce greater efficiency. It can be used to generate new revenue
The industrial Internet is about systems and devices, although the devices may be sensing and reporting on humans. The data, however, will be machine-produced. A major benefit of the industrial Internet is the easy deployment of sensors that measure and report on the health and operation of machines. Another benefit is to capture data that was not available before connecting to the Internet.
Are there security implications to take into account?
Since a tremendous amount of data will be generated by IoT, who owns the data? Medical and financial information is already covered by regulations. But what could a manufacturer learn from our appliances, game consoles, even our cars. Will an insurance company raise our rates if we speed or go through a red light? Will the data from my car go to the car manufacturer, local law enforcement, my insurance company, and into court if I have an accident. Could the service providers collect information and sell it?
A second consideration is the ability to hack the IoT objects. The hacker could read the information, manipulate it to your disadvantage, steal the device identity, or change GPS coordinate information. This presents new security challenges to both the owner of the object as well as the collector of the data.
Will WebRTC have enterprise implications?
What will it do to communications within an enterprise? With customers? Collaboration?
WebRTC has to deliver one or more of these goals for the enterprise:
- Make money
- Save money
- Save time
- Improves experience (the one area most commonly associated with the contact center)
WebRTC can be a labor saving device. Through its collaboration capabilities, labor can be strategically deployed. It can reduce the time required to complete tasks. This can be done today mostly with more expensive solutions. WebRTC promises to deliver these capabilities at a much lower price and to a greater number of organizations.
One of the WebRTC focuses is on improving the contact center experience. WebRTC can be an excellent sales delivery mechanism. It will be most valuable for high value transactions. It can also help with complex customized sales or services such as for medical and scientific devices and healthcare. Use of WebRTC can better retain the high value customer.
The ability to initiate a voice and later a video chat, with an agent during the access of a website, will help retain that customer when contacting the organization’s website. The chat can mitigate problems the customer has with the website. The ability to chat may also increase the number of customers willing to try the website. They always have an exit to talk to a person.
The voice/video chat will improve customer retention and loyalty. It is much less expensive to work at keeping the customer happy than trying to recapture the customer when the contact center experience is poor.
As our culture allows and supports impulsive behavior. WebRTC responds well to this change. The goal of the contact center is to sell, many times to upsell, and/or respond to customer demands.
What about cloud? Is it a solid enterprise PBX alternative yet? Better for the SMB?
Not every cloud will have the silver lining that you want. If as many predict, cloud services will stimulate the migration from on-premises systems, then working with multiple cloud services is very likely. As the enterprise and SMB looks at cloud solutions, it may become attractive to move more and more functions to the cloud--but which cloud, and how many clouds.
Replacing the PBX with a cloud service seems simple enough. But with Communications Enabled Business Processes (CEBP), the PBX cloud will most likely have to integrate with another cloud offering business applications support.
Some CEBP applications will work best on IaaS (infrastructure-as-a-service), some on PaaS (platform-as-a-service), while there are already many SaaS (software-as-a-service) services that meet enterprise demands. This situation of multiple cloud services, each delivering a portion of the enterprise applications, will eventually lead to connecting the multiple clouds together. We need cloud interoperability and federation.
Multiple issues will become important to resolve:
- Connecting to multiple clouds as a single enterprise
- Two or more services used to complete a single enterprise function
- Moving data and information requests among clouds
- Multiple cloud resource sharing
- Transferring tasks, licensed software, and workloads among clouds
The IEEE is working standards to help with these issues.
Why should someone come to ITEXPO to hear you present? What will they learn?
The goal of my ITEXPO presentations at the Telecom Reseller theatre is to deliver a 15 to 20 minute overview of a subject that may be new and relevant to today’s VARs and enterprises. The presentations offer enough information to gain a grasp of the subject, pros and cons, without being too technical, not boring.
I find it interesting that past presentations start with a few people seated in the theater but have a large number of listeners who will not sit down to listen. That would be a commitment most don’t want to make. However they will stand in the back for the entire presentation anyway.
The presentations are a take away that allows the listener to decide they know enough and do not want to pursue the subject. I also provide a number of online references so that the listener can continue their education after the presentation