Greg Galitzine : Greg Galitzine's VoIP Authority Blog
Greg Galitzine

September 2008

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Stocks Hit Hard, But Some Bright Spots?

September 30, 2008


The stock slide which was precipitated by yesterday's failure by the House of Representatives to approve a bailout package for the ailing economy was a doozy.   The Dow fell 777 points and the only people smiling are the traders who make their living off volatility.   Lest you think that the tech sector was spared, stocks in such bellwether companies as Apple and Google fell hard. On the NASDAQ exchange, Apple closed down 17.9 percent, or $22.98, at $105.26 and Google ended off $50.04, or 11.6 percent, at $381.00.   Research in Motion, Nokia, Microsoft... shareholders all felt the pain.   Early reports this morning are showing a slight bounce after yesterday's massive selloff.   At 4:30 a.m. EDT, Reuters was reporting that S&P 500 futures were up 2.7 percent, Dow Jones futures up 1.8 percent and NASDAQ 100 futures were up 2 percent.   We'll see what transpires when markets open today.   Of course more importantly, we need to wait to see how all this turbulence will affect our IP communications and related markets.

Skype & Asterisk

September 25, 2008

Rich has today's big story. Skype and Digium announced they will collaborate and this is good news for enterprises, developers, resellers... the entire ecosystem. There's also a Skype for Asterisk beta program that's launching. Details canbe found at The initial beta program will be limited to a small group selected to represent a broad cross-section of potential users and developers. Depending on results of the initial phase of the beta , the plan is to open the program to a much larger group. I'm about to hop on a plane, but rest assured Rich will have more of the story as the day progresses.

Astricon Photos (Day 1)

September 24, 2008



Lumenvox News from Astricon

September 22, 2008

Travel travails aside, I've arrived at my hotel in Glendale Arizona for the start of Astricon.   Already there is news coming out of the event, as it was announced that speech rec vendor Lumenvox is powering VXI* 3.1 from I6NET, a company specializing in Interactive Voice & Video Response technologies, VXI* is designed to enable a wealth of existing VXML applications to run on the Asterisk PBX platform, and to enable developers to create new speech recognition solutions.   Jim Webster, Director of Technology Partnerships at Digium said in a press release, "SMB and Fortune 500 companies that service millions of users on Asterisk platforms can now run VXML-based speech solutions. This allows both developers and Asterisk users to take advantage of low-cost and robust speech solutions, with the economies of scale Asterisk provides."   LumenVox's Speech Engine is natively integrated with Asterisk and distributed and supported by Digium. VXI* 3.1 is available online from I6NET.   Make sure to bookmark the Asterisk community on TMCnet to ensure you stay up to date with all the news that will be made at Astricon this week.

Made it to Phoenix

September 22, 2008

The Jet Blue terminal was evacuated this morning after a suspicious package was found in a passenger's luggage. The luggage contained replica grenades that were used as paperweights, thankfully not the real thing. In any event, after a two-hour delay, they finally let us take off and we made it safely across the country to Phoenix, where apparently the custom is to give away your car rental when you are late. So we wait...  

Jet Blue Terminal Evacuated

September 22, 2008

So I'm sitting here at JFK, outside the Jet Blue terminal which has just been evacuated. We're hearing word that they found two grenades inside, but of course details are hard to come by. Those of you watching the news probably know better than we do... I assume we're a safe enough distance away from the action. Geraldo Rivera was here too. That guy has a nose for a story, huh? Looks like my trip to Astricon is on hold for now. This is gonna be a long day...

Quintum/NET and Microsoft Connect at ITEXPO

September 17, 2008

I just left Microsoft's meeting room at ITEXPO, where executives from Quintum/NET and Microsoft's Response Point team shared the news (and showed off the hardware) that Quintum/NET has developed two new gateways designed specifically for Microsoft Response Point systems: a VoIP T1/E1/PRI version and a four-port FXS. The gateways are designed to work with Response Point systems from all of the solution OEMs (Aastra, Syspine, and D-Link) The gateways have been designed and are currently undergoing beta testing. General availability is expected in mid-October. The pricing is as such: the four-port is listed at $330; the T1/E1/PRI is $1,800.
For more details, check out Michael Dinan's full coverage.

Open Source News at ITEXPO

September 17, 2008

If you follow open source telephony, today is a good day for news from the major players in the market.   Digium Digium kicks off the ITEXPO open source news review today. The Huntsville-based creators of Asterisk announced that Camrivox Limited, a unified communications technology vendor that designs solutions that unify telephony with on-demand CRM applications has joined their technology partnership program.   The Camrivox Flexor CTI Software family of products offers SMBs a simple way to marry on-demand CRM (Customer Relationship Management) applications with IP PBX telephony and VoIP handsets. The company's upcoming release of Flexor Connect for Asterisk brings an extra dimension to the Asterisk community and follows through with tangible benefits to businesses focused on maximizing their customer interaction.   The partnership will allow Asterisk users to benefit from other Flexor CTI Software products, including CTI for Outlook, Salesforce, NetSuite, and Microsoft Dynamics CRM.   Sangoma Sangoma Technologies today announced its newest product line, dubbed NetBorder Express VoIP Gateway Cards. Sangoma's cards, in concert with this new set of software building blocks combine to deliver a SIP to TDM VoIP Gateway solution.

ITEXPO in Full Swing, IP Man Makes his Debut

September 17, 2008

It's Wednesday morning here in Los Angeles and today promises to be a day chock full of exciting happenings at ITEXPO, going on at the LA Convention Center.   In addition to the keynotes on the schedule (Cisco's Louis Marascio, Texas Instruments' Fred Zimmerman, Sharone Ben-Levi of AudioCodes, Michael Tessler of Broadsoft and 8x8 Chairman Bryan Martin) today marks the opening of the Exhibit Hall, where attendees will have a chance to visit with over 175 vendors leading the charge in the IP communications space.   The Exhibit Hall will be open from 4pm - 8pm, and will feature a networking reception sponsored by Aculab beginning at 6pm.   Today will also see Day 2 of the Ingate SIP Trunking Workshop and the always popular Reseller Solutions Day Workshop -- both events are free to all attendees.   So far the show has lived up to expectations. Yesterday's keynotes were all very interesting takes on the current and future state of the IP Communications industry.   One notable moment was the animated introduction of our own Rich Tehrani. SIP Trunking provider Broadvox sponsored a "surprise" animated intro to the keynotes and the cartoon featured a brand-new character -- IP Man -- and his flying monkey sidekick, Metoo, as they worked to rid the world of the evil Jitter and Noise. It was very entertaining, and even featured an animated Rich Tehrani.

Communications Developer Keynote: Avaya's Lawrence Byrd

September 16, 2008

Lawrence Byrd, Director of Unified Communications Architecture at Avaya kicked off the keynote schedule of the Communications Developer conference on Tuesday with a presentation entitled Unified Communications in a Web 2.0 World.   The gist of the speech was that developers will play a critical role in the future of communications, and in fact the developer community is the engine that runs the IP communications world.   Byrd threw about several definitions of "2.0," including one from Tim O'Reilly that defines the Web 2.0 phenomenon as "...networked apps that explicitly leverage network effects."   Byrd also used this definition from Harvard Business School's Andrew McAfee, "Enterprise 2.0 is the use of emergent social software platforms within companies and between companies and their partners and customers."   In any event the developer community should recognize this as an opportunity; an expanded playground to create ways of connecting these elements to deliver added value for their end customers.   "We've spent the last 20 years trying to connect the phone to the Web," said Byrd. "Connect the Web to the store. That is the definition of unified communications, connecting both the old and the new."   And as we move ahead we need to be sure that legacy applications and modern cutting edge applications work well together. That is how we add value. It has to work together.

Live Video Streaming; Skype: VoIP Is Dead Keynote at ITEXPO

September 16, 2008

Skype's Jonathan Christensen is speaking right now about how VoIP is dead.   Of course he's just generating some controversy, but it's an attention grabbing headline nonetheless.   Meanwhile check out Tom's blog.   I'm sitting next to him and he's holding up his smart phone and I'm thinking... "What the #$%^& is he doing?"   Well he's shooting video of the keynoter and he's streaming video via his blog.   It's pretty cool to tell the truth.   Next best thing to being there and all that...   Check out his blog and see the playback later on, or if you're lucky enough to catch my blog within a few minutes of posting, click here to see Tom's ITEXPO live video streaming of the keynotes.  

Aastra Makes Headlines at ITEXPO

September 16, 2008

Aastra Telecom made several announcements this morning in conjunction with their participation at Internet Telephony Conference and EXPO in Los Angeles. Aastra will be exhibiting in the open source pavilion at ITEXPO on Wednesday and Thursday. First up, Aastra introduced the Aastra MBU 400 DECT Mobility solution, which is designed to slot in between the company's personal mobility solution and their enterprise class SIP DECT solution, which were previously announced. Aastra also announced a Web portal called
 Lastly Aastra announced that they will be releasing a software upgrade to their Asterisk-based solution (AastraLink Pro) in the November time frame.

For more details, please check out this article.

VoIP Logic at ITEXPO

September 16, 2008

VoIP Logic, has announced a new solution -- CDR Manager -- a Call Detail Record Management module for its Cortex OSS middleware. CDR Manager is designed to serve as an easy-to-use, hosted tool for real-time reporting and access to call records and other raw user data. This latest module is geared towards providing integration between systems and the monitoring and management tools carriers and services providers require to run them.   Cortex is the central component that drives VoIP Logic's VoIP managed services and solutions portfolio. The company enables telecommunications service providers worldwide to build and manage customized, flexible and scalable IP telephony rollouts. By deploying the Cortex OSS middleware system, VoIP Logic is able to provide their service customers with a comprehensive, fully neutral, set of on-demand solutions for service providers looking to use VoIP technology.   According to CEO Micah Singer, "What we're trying to do is to make something complex more simple.

Education is Key to Growth of SIP Trunking

September 16, 2008

Joel Maloff is Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing at BandTel.   He's pulling double duty this week at ITEXPO, speaking both in the Ingate SIP Trunking seminar as well as in the TMC University session entitled Best Practices in VoIP Security.   The fact that Maloff is speaking at a conference designed to educate attendees fits right in with the general theme of education that is playing a major role in his life these days.   Maloff, who is tasked with driving BandTel's strategic focus and message, is spearheading a more aggressive campaign built on proactive education to help customers understand how Band Tel can help them achieve their goals.   But it's not just end users that need education. Maloff told TMCnet that the reseller community is in need of education too, to better understand how they can embrace a recurring revenue stream. Resellers and VARs are interested in selling product, he said. BandTel offers them an opportunity to establish a recurring revenue stream via their various programs.   Consultants who advise end users also need to be educated about the various options provided by SIP Trunking.   Among the bigger challenges facing the industry, Maloff believes that the FUD (fear, uncertainty and doubt) being spread by certain providers will eventually fall away as more pure SIP Trunking deployments underscore the value propositions and customers begin to understand how they can leverage SIP Trunking.

Simple Signal Does V-Mail to Text

September 16, 2008

I had the pleasure of meeting with Simple Signal executives who caught me up on what the company has been up to lately. SimpleSignal is exhibiting at this week's ITEXPO at the Los Angeles Convention Center. Stop by and see them in booth 642.   Among the things we discussed,  was the exciting news of a new voicemail-to-text service called SimpleScribe that's designed to let small and medium businesses (SMBs) more easily manage their voicemail messages by reading them. Built on GotVoice technology, a white label version of the SimpleScribe voicemail-to-text service is immediately available for channel partners.   The new SimpleScribe service converts voice messages into text and delivers them via e-mail.

Connect With Avaya Networking Event On Tap

September 15, 2008

Monday morning, it must be Los Angeles...   ITEXPO preparation is full swing here at the LA Convention Center, as the exhibit hall floor is being layed out and the trucks are getting set to roll in.   While there are no activities scheduled at the convention center for attendees until tomorrow, Avaya is putting together a networking/informational event tonight at the nearby Westin Bonaventure Hotel, at the Bonaventure Brewing Company.   The "Technology on Tap - Connect with Avaya" event is open to all ITEXPO attendees and will feature great information from Avaya and their partners, followed by a networking reception at the Bonaventure Brewing Company. The event is scheduled for Monday September 15th (today) from 7:00pm until 9:30pm.   To reserve your spot at this free and informative event, please register here.   See you at the Westin!

VoIP in the Skies is a Social Concern

September 14, 2008

Andy has an entry today about a NY Times article that talks about VoIP in the Sky. The interesting thing to note is that using the increasingly available inflight wireless broadand connections are not causing a technological upheaval, but rather the Times article points out that the social challenges of enabling VoIP calling in the cozy confines of an airplane inflight are more the issue. Check it out for yourself. It's a good read.

In Town for ITEXPO

September 14, 2008

I've just arrived in Los Angeles with an advance platoon of my TMC colleagues ahead of ITEXPO West 2008, which runs from Tuesday September 16-Thursday September 19.   I'm really looking forward to the show this year. The meetings I have on tap promise to be chock full of new product information, which I can't wait to share with my readers.   Furthermore, I'm really excited by our keynote lineup which will feature a whole series of insightful speeches from industry leaders including Skype, Microsoft, Sonus, AudioCodes, BroadSoft and 8x8. Indeed when you factor in keynotes from Avaya, Cisco and Texas Instruments at the collocated Communications Developer, it's a speaker lineup that is really tough to beat.   But before we get to that stage, we need to lay the groundwork, so my co-workers and I are in town early today to make sure that everything goes smoothly as the conference rooms, exhibit hall and all the other elements of the show come together as planned.   It promises to be quite an interesting and exciting week, so if you haven't finalized your plans to attend yet, I urge you to take advantage of our online registration for the show. If you register online you can avoid the $50 onsite registration fee.

PODCAST: Texas Instruments' Fred Zimmerman

September 12, 2008

Fred Zimmerman, Director, CPE VoIP Solutions for Texas Instruments' Communications Infrastructure & Voice Business is scheduled to deliver a keynote address at the upcoming Communications Developers Conference taking place in Los Angeles at the LA Convention Center, September 16th to the 18th.   Fred will be speaking at 11:30 am on Wednesday the 17th.   In this podcast interview, Zimmerman touches upon the focus of his keynote as well as TI's role in the SMB market and what's driving SMBs to adopt VoIP.   Zimmerman also discusses advancements in the user's quality of experience, by leveraging such new innovations as HD Voice and Wideband audio, quality of service and "PIQUA", advanced user interfaces and more.   Be sure to check out the podcast, and if you are able to come down to the Communications Developer Conference in LA Convention Center in Los Angeles next week (September 16-18) be sure to schedule your trip to include Zimmerman's keynote at 11:30 am on Wednesday the 17th.    

Yo! Sushi Picks Swyx

September 10, 2008

At TMC our staff is exceptional. We are no different from most businesses however, when it comes to having what I will call "quirks."   There are those on our team who absolutely LOVE chain restaurants. We have Wendy's fanatics and fans of Rockbottom. We also have a whole contingent of people who simply can't live without sushi.

  We write about lots of stuff here at TMC, but we have a certain affinity and history covering VoIP and contact centers .

Quintum, Brekeke Offer Joint IP-PBX Solution

September 9, 2008

Quintum Technologies, a subsidiary of Network Equipment Technologies (NET), and SIP-based IP PBX maker Brekeke Software announced that they have completed interoperability testing of Quintum's Tenor VoIP MultiPath switches and gateways with Brekeke Software, Inc.'s IP PBX.     An award-winning product, Brekeke PBX is an SIP-based IP-PBX system that provides reliable and scalable IP communications for enterprises and service providers. The Brekeke PBX provides all essential IP-PBX features that enterprise users require, including voicemail to e-mail, "confirm call," and number portability. The newly introduced edition of Brekeke PBX, Multi-Tenant Edition, provides a simple and flexible yet easy to deploy solution for service providers that want to offer hosted IP-PBX services. Brekeke PBX supports both Windows and Linux platforms.   The combination is being hailed as a "perfect fit" by Ernesto Casas, General Manager for Binnacle Technologies, a value added distributor dedicated to VoIP in Latin America.   Early reports from customer camps are positive as well.   Having recently deployed the Quintum/Brekeke combination, Francisco Martin, CTO of Beyond En Linea, a Binnacle client commented, "With the combination of Quintum and Brekeke, we were able to deploy advanced communications for all our employees regardless of where they are located, integrate our remote branch offices in Venezuela, and integrate users in key partner locations."

Enterprise SIP Security - Free Webinar!

September 8, 2008

One of the most serious subjects in all of telecom is security. It's something that is on the mind of everyone who is considering deploying next-generation SIP-based telecommunications solutions in their enterprise. And often times, there's just not enough firsthand information available.   Well an upcoming Webinar featuring speakers from two of the leading companies serving the enterprise market -- AudioCodes and Interactive Intelligence -- aims to educate attendees by teaching them the various things they need to know before deploying any SIP-based solutions.   Namely, attendees will learn about:
  • SIP Security challenges
  • Security misconceptions
  • Tools to counter security threats
  • Proactive monitoring; and
  • Effective solutions that are simple to deploy, tough to break
  In this webinar, the speakers will address the challenges and the misconceptions surrounding SIP Security, and examine the tools available to counter them. This session will also explore robust solutions that not only tackle security threats, but also empower businesses to proactively protect their networks from current and future attacks.

Outrageous Interactions: Public Voting Begins Today!

September 8, 2008

If you've been following along with the Outrageous Interactions contest, today is an important day. The panel of expert judges has selected the finalists and voting is now open to the public to decide who will win the trip to Hawaii. Voters are eligible to win a Garmin eTrex GPS. To vote for your favorite entry, visit Public voting closes Monday, Sept. 15 at 11:59 p.m. Eastern daylight time. I must say I've checked out the list of finalists and there are some wonderful entries to choose from. So click on over to Outrageous Interactions to see the finalists and vote for your chance to win!

Fonality Lands $12M in Financing

September 4, 2008

The first bit of news I saw today was that Fonality had landed $12 million worth of financing from a pair of investors including Draper Fisher Jurveston and Intel Capital. Good for Fonality. Good for open source. Simply put, I think this type of investment underscores the viability of building telecommunications products on open source, and frankly is another tolling of the bell, signaling that the traditional closed approaches are no longer suitable.   Fonality's CEO Chris Lyman said in the official press release, that the infusion of funds, " us the freedom to further accelerate our growth and acquisition strategy."   I'm curious to see how this plays out.   Fonality, who announced they had joined IP phone maker snom's ecosystem this week, will be presenting their trixbox Open Communication Certification Courses at the upcoming INTERNET TELEPHONY Conference & EXPO at the Los Angeles Convention Center on September 16-18.   Interested developers and resellers can sign up for FtOCC Admin, which prepares people to sell and install trixbox, or FtOCC Technician which focuses on trixbox support and troubleshooting.
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