Insider Telecom: Glossary Part 2

Peter : On Rad's Radar?
| Peter Radizeski of RAD-INFO, Inc. talking telecom, Cloud, VoIP, CLEC, and The Channel.

Insider Telecom: Glossary Part 2

BTW, I hit a lot of events and listen to quite a few webinars. People confuse me, too, with how they refer to groups. I get how the term Partner can mean a lot of different things to different people, but if you mean Customer, say Customer or Client. A Partner as a customer is just goofy.

The way the term Service Provider is used is also confusing. In its pure form a prostitute and a bartender are service providers, so at some point we need to clarify the term. Carrier, cableco, cellco, telco, ISP and MSP are different types of service provider. Especially during a talk or webinar, be clear, give context.

Channel Partner today seems to be anything from agent to system integrator. That is too broad a definition. (It may be why your channel program is flagging.)

An Agent is like an insurance broker, helping the customer choose the best solution from a wide range of carriers.

An Agent can be direct with the SP (here I mean SP as any service provider) or can be indirect through a relationship with a Master Agent. the master agent will hold quite a few contracts directly with SPs.

A VAR is a value added reseller who typically sells hardware and service in the IT space. Typically the VAR handles the IT and the LAN and stops at the router. A VAR can be a small IT shop or it can be like CDW.

An inter-connect is like a VAR, whereby their business model is designed around the sale and maintenance of on-premise PBX's. The business model cash flows around the big ticket sale of the box and its maintenance. That model is in conflict with the monthly recurring model that most channel partners see.

The MSP is the managed service provider who handles some or all of the IT services for a business in a monthly recurring charge. MSPs used to be VARs or break/fix shops that moved up the ladder to the MRR role.

System Integrators are software based shops that usually sell, maintain, and integrate software systems - POS, Microsoft, IBM, blah blah blah.

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