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July 06, 2009

Strong Industry Segment: Technologies that Support Hybrid TDM-IP Environments

By Michael Dinan, TMCnet Editor


A British company that provides IP and media processing boards and software to the global communications market told TMCnet during an interview today that it may disclose the future direction of its technology at ITEXPO West in September.
 
In a possible hint of that direction, the sales and marketing director at Aculab – whose U.S. offices are headquartered in Needham, Mass. – told TMC President Rich Tehrani (News - Alert) during an interview (printed in full below) that the company has something for various businesses, including application developers, systems integrators and solution and service providers.
 
“ApplianX gateways will have a strong presence (at the show),” the Aculab official, Chris Gravett, told Tehrani, referring to one of the company’s flagship products.
 
Interestingly, Gravett also told Tehrani that India and Eastern Europe represent the company’s largest opportunities for growth, and that technologies that support hybrid TDM-IP environments represent the communications industry’s strongest segment.
 
Their full exchange follows.
 
Rich Tehrani: What has the economic crisis taught you, and how has it changed your customers?
 
Chris Gravett (pictured left): The importance of cash flow, collections, and so on. The recession teases out what is really important.
 
RT: How is this down economy affecting your decisions to reinvest in your company or market, if at all? Where will you invest?
 
CG: Investment all round is reduced in line with business downturn. However, we are still investing in innovation and new technology, and in a more limited fashion, in marketing.
 
RT: What’s the strongest segment in the communications industry?
 
CG: Technology supporting or enabling hybrid TDM/IP environments.
 
RT: With the rise of smartphones and netbooks, many wireless technologies, such as WiFi (News - Alert), appear to be poised for rapid growth. For example, we’re seeing more and more airlines add in-flight WiFi. In general, how widespread should WiFi be, in your view?
 
CG: WiFi isn’t the only answer. However, wireless connectivity should be ubiquitous.
 
RT: Which nation or region of the world will present the largest opportunity for your company in 2009/10?
 
CG: India and Eastern Europe offer the best opportunities for new business growth.
 
RT: In what ways is President Barack Obama helping or hindering the technology markets? What more can he do?
 
CG: The government’s concept of emphasizing communications technology as a means to improve healthcare services should bode well for our industry. In addition, President Obama’s plan to reduce emissions could also spark interest in unified communications and other “green” communications technologies. The president must also commit to invest in homeland security-related technology projects, and ensure that lobbyists of the traditional carriers don’t adversely impact the freedom of the Internet.
 
RT: What has the iPhone 3G taught us? I know it’s very new, but what about the Palm Pre? What are we learning from the smartphones based on the open source Google Android (News - Alert) platform?
 
CG: It’s hard to find the real business benefits other than unified communications as many of the applications for the iPhone (News - Alert), and so on, are social networking related or have limited attention span appeal.
 
RT: I understand you are exhibiting Sept. 1 to 3 at ITEXPO West in Los Angeles. What will you show there? Describe the companies or people who should come to your exhibit.
 
CG: ApplianX gateways will have a strong presence. We may make first disclosure of our future technology direction. Aculab has got something to offer a broad range of companies such as application developers, systems integrators, solution providers, service providers, and so on. Anybody looking for a cost-effective and innovative range of products will benefit from visiting our stand at ITEXPO (News - Alert).
 
RT: Why should customers choose your company’s solutions? How do they justify the expense to management?
 
CG: Although we might be in a down economy, communications providers and developers remain under inordinate pressure to deliver high-value, powerful communications services to businesses and consumers—quickly, and at minimal costs. Aculab understands these challenges, and as a result, provides enabling technologies that allow our customers to create and deliver a multitude of compelling, robust communications solutions.  What’s more, Aculab’s customers appreciate the fact that our technologies often allow them to deploy new services while utilizing their existing infrastructure, which is certainly appealing from both financial and operational perspectives.
 

Aculab is a diamond sponsor of ITEXPO West — the biggest and most comprehensive IP communications event of the year. ITEXPO West will take place in Los Angeles, Sept. 1 to 3, 2009, featuring three valuable days of exhibits, conferences, and networking opportunities you can’t afford to miss. Visit Aculab at booth #512 in the exhibit hall. Don’t wait. Register now!


Michael Dinan is a contributing editor for TMCnet, covering news in the IP communications, call center and customer relationship management industries. To read more of Michael's articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Michael Dinan



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