Text Appeal: Answering the Call for Customer Chat
The phone may still be the most used (and, sadly for contact centers, the most expensive) channel in customer care, but demand for web chat has grown significantly. In 2013, Forrester reported a 24 percent rise in chat usage over the previous three years. And according research by BoldChat, after using live chat for the first time, more than two-thirds of consumers actively look for websites that offer chat as an option.
Already, WebRTC is supported on more than 1 billion endpoints, says Google, one of a raft of important tech companies driving this new technology. And Disruptive Analysis expects that to grow to 3.9 billion by 2016.
Assessing the Costs and Savings of Lync
Dell sponsored this research to illustrate the need for tools like its recently released MessageStats for Lync. The solution delivers a variety of functions, including a chargeback feature so users can assign estimated costs of Lync and its various features, Johnstone explains. It's also integrated with ActiveDirectory, so users can roll those costs up at an organizational level.
AudioCodes Helps Lync Scale
A little more than a year ago AudioCodes launched its One Voice initiative after coming to the conclusion that the Microsoft Lync ecosystem was just too complex and contained too many vendors for most IT managers to comfortably navigate. The idea was to bring a wide variety of solutions under one umbrella to create a one-stop shop for Lync and, essentially, to give customers one throat to choke.
Machine-to-Machine Communications: The M2M Space is Poised for Big Things, But Faces Key Challenges
Global M2M cellular connections are forecast to hit the 374.9 million mark by 2017, expanding at a compound annual growth rate of 26.5 percent from 91.4 million in 2011, according to research firm IHS. Berg Insight, meanwhile, forecasts that M2M devices with cellular connectivity will increase by 22 percent this year to reach 164.5 million in emerging markets, and estimates that M2M connections will grow at a CAGR of 24.4 percent with 489.9 million connections in 2018. And Analysys Mason says the M2M market will be worth $88 billion in the next 10 years.
The Great Indoors
Seventy to 80 percent of mobile data is generated indoors. This is a refrain we're hearing more and more lately from companies in the wireless infrastructure arena as they introduce new solutions to help service providers better address the in-building opportunity, which ABI Research says will be worth $4 billion in 2018.
WebRTC Fuels Surge in Telehealth Services
The other factor is mobile. Tablets and smartphones are the devices on which patients expect their digital experiences to be delivered on. Today, a telehealth service that wants to embed video chat into a native mobile app can do it by relying on a WebRTC platform such as Weemo. This is how MediSprout (disclaimer: MediSprout uses Weemo for its telehealth solution) provides both a web and a native telehealth experience.
Telecom Industry Success Hinges on Compliance with Carrier Ethernet Standards
As Carrier Ethernet continues to ascend into the mainstream, the Metro Ethernet Forum's Five Attributes of Carrier Ethernet - standardized services, scalability, reliability, quality of service, and service management - have evolved into more clearly defined standards. The MEF has laid out a clear path for the telecommunications industry to adopt Carrier Ethernet 2.0 and associated best practices, providing a more structured framework for communications service providers to better deploy services and meet customer expectations. Despite this, confusion exists, specifically when it comes to Carrier Ethernet 2.0 performance management standards.
Cloud & Data Center
Backup Comes to the Cloud Front
With the rapid influx of complex information and data increasing exponentially in both sophistication and volume, ensuring business continuity through a holistic data management strategy is critical to survival. Business continuity goals are best achieved by implementing a strategy that encompasses data storage, backup, access requirements, retention and the ability to apply recovery point and recovery time objectives in granular detail. The ever-increasing reliance on storing information electronically makes implementation of a reliable backup solution more important than ever before. The right strategy will save enterprises time, money, and peace of mind.
On Rad's Radar
The 3 Reasons to Shift
Every channel chief in the U.S. is parroting Gartner's Tiffany Bova to tell channel partners to shift their business model - or perish. It's tiring to hear it repeated - like Chinese water torture. Here are the three reasons to start the shift now.
Enterprise Collaboration Roundup
Collaboration means different things to different people, but increasingly enterprise collaboration involves video, document sharing, integration with back office systems, and mobile capabilities as well as stuff like voice, IM, and e-mail.
Target Practice: Where Retailers Are with Security
There was also significant interest (59 percent) in retail analytics that can utilize Wi-Fi enabled smartphones to capture shoppers' data. Of that 59 percent, 75 percent are either actively utilizing these analytics or have a strong interest in them. Interestingly, only 25 percent say they would not use such capabilities because they believe it is an intrusion on their customers' privacy.
INTERNET TELEPHONY Congratulates Winners of the UC Excellence Awards
People are increasingly on the move, both while at work and play. Unified communications can help individuals more efficiently communicate and collaborate via voice, e-mail, chat, video, or whatever method, and to do so whether they are on wireline or wireless devices. It can enable them to make their availability know via presence features.
Blue Jeans Brings Together What Had Been Separate Islands of Videoconferencing
Blue Jeans Network has enabled 3 million video meetings to date, has 2,000 business customers in 200 countries, and supports 130 minutes of communication minutes annually. Its customers range from the world's largest businesses, to small and mid-market companies. Facebook is among the users of Blue Jeans Network, with more than half of the social network's employees using the service.
The Wireless Office: Mobile Apps Help Organizations Work More Efficiently, Effectively
Mobile communications is transforming business. What people previously did at desktop computers they now do on smartphones and cellular-enabled laptops. So organizations now are creating mobile apps to enable their employees to be more effective while on the move.
The Latest in UC & IP PBX: Big Vendors Amass More Power; Mobility, Video Become Table Stakes
It's also due in part to the introduction of Microsoft Lync, which Myers says is the most disruptive force in UC today. Lync is not disruptive because it's particularly innovative, she explains. It is shaking things up because it allows Microsoft to address a wide range of UC requirements - including IM, collaboration, and (more recently) PBX functionality - and to leverage its ubiquitous presence on business computers and relationships with business customers to win and keep users.
VoIP Dialing Emphasizes Benefits of SIP, Talks About What's Next
VoIP Dialing sells its offerings to businesses, primarily larger entities with 50,000 minutes or more of voice traffic a month. Its direct sales staff emphasizes the value the company delivers in terms of simplicity and quality. Nabon added that VoIP Dialing also can help its call center customers increase their call center performance by offering tips in this realm.
Why the Channel Will Matter in 2014
One thing is a complete solution. Sane service providers know that they can't be all things to all customers. Also, customers may not want to rip-and-replace pieces of their infrastructure; they may want components added to enhance what they have. Partners are best suited for that.
Cloud & Data Center
Cloud Communications & The Survival of the Fittest: What to Expect in the Year Ahead
There's no denying that the telecom industry has enjoyed a significant increase in demand for mobile devices this year, but 2014 is shaping up to be a year of change. Widespread consolidation and an accelerated shift to cloud services are two of the biggest change agents on the horizon-and agility, flexibility, and innovation are their watchwords.
How to Manage the Signaling Impact of LTE Small Cells
Mobile service providers with an eye on cost control are highly motivated to optimize paging and tracking area management. Simply by reducing the signaling volume for these procedures, they can support more subscribers on their existing networks and defer additional control plane capital investment. Reducing signaling on the mobile device also extends its battery life.
Lemko Exec Offers Radical New View on Cellular Data Networks
Forget what you know about mobile data networking. The cellular carriers got it all wrong. Actually, forget about the cellular carriers too. The future is in swarming, self-organizing cell sites owned by individuals.
Get Ready for a Year of Intense Cellco Marketing, VoLTE Intros & Mobile Intelligence
At the end of 2013 there were more than 2 billion smartphones, 300 million tablets, and one billion portable PCs in use globally, according to Deloitte's Global Mobile Consumer Survey. Deloitte estimates there were one billion smartphones sold last year, up from 750 million in 2012.
Lync Roundup: What Microsoft Lync Partners Are Offering and Why
The Anywhere365 Unified Contact Center, the company's flagship product, is part of its flexible dialogue management system, for which all (IP) voice, chat and web chat, video, e-mail and conference communications can be efficiently and adaptively routed, traced and tracked. Lync Reception Attendant is provided on top of the Anywhere365 UCC platform.
An Update on Lync
We are unique in the communications industry to have the benefit of one of the broadest eco-system of partners offering devices, products and services optimized for Lync. This wave of partner- led innovation, driven by Lync's open and interoperable platform, is helping to provide unprecedented choice and value for our customers across a broad spectrum of solutions and services.
GLOBALINX Connex Review
GLOBALINX, founded in 1997, is a reseller of Tier-1 carriers' services, including PRIs, MPLS, Fast & Gigabit Ethernet, as well offering business-class VoIP solutions, that includes feature-rich hosted unified communications. GLOBALINX was founded by Craig Jerabeck, who previously founded @Wireless Enterprises Inc., a 78-unit franchisor of retail wireless stores
Infonetics Surveys the SDN in the Data Center Frontier
Infonetics Research recently issued a new survey on software-defined networking for the data center. To learn more about the key takeaways, INTERNET TELEPHONY talked to Cliff Grossner, Ph.D. directing analyst, data center and cloud at the research firm.
SBCs Answer the Call: Solutions Adapt to Address New Form Factors, Technologies, Applications
The session border controller is a network element that always seems to be in the thick of things. And it appears that it will maintain that position as the communications industry moves forward with important new technologies including network functions virtualization, software-defined networking, and WebRTC.
Cloud & Data Center
Blazing a Trail on the Software Telco Frontier: ILEC Saddles Up for What's Next in Communications
Saddleback, which is owned by the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, offers both business and residential services. Its 55-square-mile coverage area includes a mix of tribal residences in a very rural area, and some very valuable commercial real estate with Scottsdale, Ariz., addresses, notes Saddleback President Bill Bryant.
On Rad’s Radar
The Money in the Cloud
Add value, provide use cases, make it granular, and you become sticky. Salespeople today have to provide value beyond the services they sell. One way to provide that value is to let your customers know how other similar businesses handle similar problems.
Making the Move to SIP Telephony
Whether you've outgrown your traditional analog or digital phone system or are starting from scratch, SIP telephony is a great way to contain costs, improve collaboration and leverage your existing technology.
TMC Announces 2014 Product of the Year Awards
INTERNET TELEPHONY and its parent company, TMC, are proud to announce the Product of the Year Awards. Congratulations to all these distinguished companies.
Exploiting The Internet of Things with Investigative Analytics
From call detail records and network logs, to device and GPS information, there's an ever-increasing stream of machine-generated data in the telecommunications industry. More cell phones, mobile devices, clickstream data - and anything with a sensor or RFID tag - are being instrumented, a phenomenon dubbed the Internet of Things.
On Rad's Radar
Focus on the Customer
With all the changes going on in the telecom industry, with all the chanting of cloud, BYOD, mobility, yadda, what should you do? My answer: Focus on your customer.
Forced Bundling of Pay TV Channels: No Longer a Tenable Marketing Model
The forced bundling of hundreds of TV channels is no longer tenable. This marketing model, the result of 60 years of evolution, has been immensely profitable for TV programmers. Understandably resistant to a change that could cost them billions of dollars annually, programmers must recognize that the model is failing. The two largest cable TV companies have reported their latest quarterly customer attrition. Comcast lost 129,000 subscribers during the third quarter of 2013. Time Warner Cable, with a substantially smaller customer base, lost 306,000 subscribers during the same period.
Using Microduct in the Cellular World
With the onset of LTE and other broadband hungry technologies, cell tower owners and operators have seen the need to not just bring fiber to the base of the tower, but to take fiber up the tower as well. Unfortunately, the boost in performance achievable with fiber is seen as a trade-off with the cost of installing it.
2013 Marks Google Fiber's First Birthday: But Despite All the Attention, the Company Is and Will Remain a Broadband Baby
Last month marked Google Fiber's one-year anniversary in Kansas City. That means it had been a year since the first customers began receiving the 1-gig connectivity. By the time this issue makes it to press, most if not all of the areas targeted for Google Fiber will have been installed.
Dell Expands Shareplex, Toad
As for Toad, what's new here is what Dell calls a connected intelligence feature. To break it down, that means that the Toad interface now offers a direct link to the broader Toad World community, which has more than 3 million annual visitors and which has been around for about a decade. That way Toad users - who tend to be database administrators, database developers, and analysts - of all skill levels can more easily leverage the expertise of the peers both within their own organizations and within the world at large.
Fax: Keeping up with Change
Fax has changed, not gone away. Businesses still com municate with fax documents just as much as they have in the past. What has rapidly changed, though, is how faxes are sent. Business users do not receive paper faxes anymore; instead they get a PDF document in their e-mail inbox. Fax machines are now connected up to VoIP- based ATA's, VoIP systems and service providers, versus previously using dedicated analog phone lines.
Dell Details His Plans to Reinvent the Company
Dell also welcomed to the stage Deal Daly, senior director of technical operations at Ancestry.com, a customer of the tech company. Daly told the story of how traditional IT would not support the business at Ancestry.com, which now has 2.7 million subscribers, manages 10 petabytes of dynamic structured and unstructured data, has seen contributed content increase by six times since 2009, and expects to spend $100 million in the next five years to acquire new content.
Next Generation Wireless: Riding On the Back of Millimeter Waves
Of all the wavelengths in the spectrum used for wireless data transmission, perhaps the least well known is the millimeter wave band. However, it is precisely this band (and the continuous bandwidth it provides) that enables wireless data transmission at speeds and bandwidth that compare to the high quality of fiber optic communication systems.
Telepresence Takes a Back Seat to More Affordable, Flexible Videoconferencing
In addition to the shift to more affordable and built-in video capabilities, the videoconferencing space has seen the introduction of some software-only solutions running on industry-standard x86 servers, the rise of the scalable video coding standard, and the arrival of a potentially disruptive technology known as WebRTC, noted Davis.
Yorktel Looks to Help Businesses with Video Compliance
Yorktel is video managed services provider that's been in business for 30 years. It offers professional services/advisory services related to video, managed video, media services for town halls and corporate YouTube content, and a video as a service offering. The company recently became the only video-as-a-service provider to offer Lync federation with Office 365.
Tadiran Telecom Reinvents Itself with Aeonix
Tadiran Telecom will come out with release 3 of Aeonix toward the middle of 2014. That release will support WebRTC, and HTML5 web apps for user productivity, desktop, attendant console, and ACD agents.
Why Today's Threats Require a New Approach to Incident Response
There are countless stories being told of unique threats that find their way into the most secure organizations. Each newly discovered threat brings new challenges, and many result in the need or desire for a complete security overhaul of what some organizations have in place. But most organizations have a wide variety of network security products - including next-generation firewalls, SIEM platforms, advanced malware detection platforms and more - yet somehow attacks continue to penetrate these enterprise fortresses. So what is an enterprise to do? What's missing?
Getting Vertical: Insurance
Making the Call on Obamacare
Idaho's new health insurance marketplace exchange (which is a joint state-federal venture) fired up Oct. 1 reporting both high traffic and just a few temporary glitches, according to the Idaho Statesman. (But then, consider the population of Idaho compared to that of New York or California.) Technical problems in Maryland and Minnesota delayed the launch of the enrollment process for all or most of the first day.
On Rad’s Radar
Cloud is Expensive
For the small business though, it might be cheaper to buy software and run it themselves. Dedicated hosted servers are as low as $99 per month. I'm not anti-cloud, but if the business is a single location organization without mobility or remote worker needs, then it will not be leveraging the benefits of cloud at all. A year of rented software is $9,000 - that will buy you a lot of licenses, servers and hosting.
Akkadian Labs Provisioning Manager Express Makes Configuration Quick and Simple
Last week your organization successfully implemented a new IP based Unified Communication system. The vendor is closing out the final issues and providing your staff with a few hours of training. This is a great achievement and all the new features will have a very positive impact on the user community, but what about ongoing operations?
Security & the iPhone 5s - Separating Fact from Fiction
After just two days on the market, the new iPhone 5s fingerprint reader was spoofed, making for some spirited debate. After reading these stories, some have jumped to the conclusion that biometrics are an immature technology not ready for broad consumer use. As biometric identification technologies continue to become more and more a part of our everyday lives, it is essential to separate fact from fiction using science, not sensationalism, as our guide.
The New Paradigm in Technology for Investor Communications
The communications industry is a multi-billion dollar one that is slow to move and not prone to thinking outside of the box when it comes to the use of technology, let alone the creation of new technologies. This is particularly true in the investor relations industry, in which public companies communicate with their investors. And this is not surprising considering all of the regulations and legal constraints public companies face. Nevertheless, the advent of social media and the rapid proliferation of mobile devices as a platform to communicate create opportunities for public companies to establish a closer and more direct connection with their investors.
Thinking Big about Getting Small: HetNet Deployment Considerations
According to Pew Research, 56 percent of adults now have smartphones. More surprising, though, is that 37 percent of teens now have these devices and are using them as the primary mechanism to access the Internet and communicate - via text and increasingly video - with their peers. Given that this demographic typically foreshadows how new tools will be used, many believe there is no end in sight for the current exponential surge in data traffic. The question becomes, is the telecommunications network ready to handle this type of growth?
Converting Backhaul Networks into a Storage and Application Cloud
The degree to which an operator can consistently provide content to the subscriber with high quality has become a primary source of brand differentiation. At the same time, operators are conscious of the cost impact of all this content traffic on their networks. New solutions are required to monetize Internet traffic passing through operator's networks. Dramatically reducing transport costs while improving user experience and developing new revenue opportunities is of key importance.
HBGary Director Talks Security
It typically has to do with safeguarding yourself and your assets. But, in fact, there's no foolproof way of doing so. There are, however, some steps you can take to lessen the likelihood of a security breach at your home or organization, and there are additional measures you can put in place to minimize breaches once they happen, says Matthew Standart, director of threat intelligence at HBGary, a 10-year-old security software and services company now owned by ManTech.
Test, Measurement & Monitoring: Six Things To Keep Your VoIP Systems Running Smoothly
It's the call that no network manager wants to get - your CEO is trying to make a VoIP call and the connection is choppy, making it very difficult to conduct business.
Network Functions Virtualization and the Real NGN
Virtual switching/routing has been around a long time, and software-defined networking depends on software control of packet forwarding. In a limited way, we're already using software to define the next-generation network, or NGN. What's missing is a generalized model to support any network feature through hosted software. That could save a lot in capital costs by substituting inexpensive servers for proprietary appliances, but it could also create a more agile network, a network better able to respond to market changes and opportunities. If that's not what the NGN is supposed to be, I'm missing something.
Ahead of the Curve: Sansay Leads the Pack on Virtualization, WebRTC
The term network functions virtualization has been getting a lot of attention lately as a way to help telcos save money and increase their ability to quickly introduce new services. But Sansay, which opened for business more than a decade ago, has designed everything it's built to run on standard Intel servers from day one and that helps it function in the NFV world.
10GBase-KR Ethernet Backplane Compliance Testing: Easy or a Pain in the Backplane?
Increased demand from consumers through cloud computing has helped drive more demand from Ethernet backplane servers, routers and switches. To help increase bandwidth requirements 10GBASE-KR and 40GBASE-KR4 have helped provide the additional bandwidth in the Ethernet backplane arena. The higher bandwidth, however, has created some challenges in interoperability between these devices. The result is a very precise physical layer developed from the IEEE 802.3ap Ethernet Backplane specification. Oscilloscopes play a critical role in testing the physical-layer compliance testing. What are the challenges in selecting the right oscilloscope to ensure that the 10GBASE-KR specification is being met?
Playing it Safe: Connected Technologies Address Safety, Performance, Efficiency and Good Calls
Reports and studies indicate that professional athletes who are exposed to repetitive mild traumatic brain injuries may develop ongoing impairment such as chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a degenerative condition caused by a build up of tau protein, according to a January article on the UCLA newsroom, which adds that CTE has been associated with memory loss, confusion, progressive dementia, depression, suicidal behavior, personality changes, abnormal gait and tremors.
Gaining a Competitive Edge with Hosted VoIP
True, 10 minutes a month amounts to just a couple minutes total within an average work week. But, for a property company that oversees millions of square feet of commercial property, the volume of dropped calls and/or network crashes often disrupted important business communications. When the system went down, all incoming calls automatically defaulted to the cell phone of the office manager, who doubled as the receptionist. So she'd have to literally run around the floor, relaying messages to employees.
You've Established a Successful Start-up, Now What?
As a growing start-up, expanding your business internationally is far from easy, as well as a significant investment. Regardless of how successful you are on your home turf, don't expect to jump off the plane and be welcomed with open arms by the local press, find yourself a trendy loft apartment and hire your team in the space of a few weeks. The reality is that it's hard work, and tech start-ups considering taking the plunge should always (always!) ask themselves: Is international expansion really necessary?
Cloud & Data Center
5 Components to Consider Before Choosing a Cloud Provider
Companies are now being besieged by new vendors and service delivery models promising the delivery of a wide array of solutions and services. When investigating a migration of critical customer-facing applications to the cloud, organizations need to thoroughly investigate vendors and delivery models to ensure business operations are not disrupted and that benefits touted are real.
Create Loyalty with a Cloud-based Sales Channel
First, embrace the change. It's not coming tomorrow. It's here today, so it's time to transition. In the increasingly complex world of cloud resellers, it's important to remember the sales channel basics: reward partner engagement, incent product knowledge, maximize sales tool utilization, and celebrate closed deals. Then, start with these action items to leverage your existing sales partner strategies.
On Rad’s Radar
Why You Need the CRM Habit
Well, one factor is ease of use. Sales people don't want to use CRM anyway. It's paperwork. Sales guys hate paperwork. CRM has to be frictionless - maybe even intuitive. A good user interface is essential. Integration with e-mail is optional. The ability to add notes and e-mails has to be simple. If you can find one that is voice integrated, bingo!
Online Data Backup: Storing and Securing E-mail
E-mail has brought a new era of efficiency to our day-to-day communications. Thus, the information kept in our e-mail accounts often ends up being the most crucial to protect. Who hasn't spent time searching through our inboxes and trash to find that one bit of information we so desperately need? For these reasons, backing up your e-mail should be a top priority.
Best Practices for Ensuring Cloud-based UC Security in the Enterprise
As businesses try to consolidate their enterprises and streamline processes to be more competitive in today's market, one of their most popular options has been to update and upgrade their communications systems. Within the past year, many enterprises have transitioned to unified communications connected with hosted SIP trunking connections to replace legacy PBXs connected via the PSTN - to enable new productivity and collaboration features, saving money and lowering maintenance and infrastructure costs.
How to Deliver VoLTE with Scalability, High Performance in the EPC
The game really changes with LTE. With the emergence of LTE, and its increased bandwidth and QoS capabilities, mobile operators can now start to deliver specific data services with more consistent performance. One example is voice over LTE. VoLTE is an operator-owned voice service offered through the user's LTE mobile data connection. It is delivered with specific performance characteristics, offering a more consistent and reliable experience to the user.
Can Wireless Devices Avoid Failures in a Crowded License-free Spectrum?
All sorts of devices - from baby monitors to building security systems - operate in the license-free spectrum of 900mHz and 2.4gHz, and the space is getting increasingly crowded. Every device has to hold its own among the conflicting radio waves from other products. It also needs to adapt to real-life conditions, such as keeping its signal strength through brick or wooden building walls, snow and rain, and a truck parked in its pathway. Even a properly operating device can be a subject to a cyber-attack, so command and control communications need to be adequately secured.
A User's View on BYOD Security
Before launching our VDI deployment and overall BYOD initiative, our major concerns were securing the devices on our network, and only allowing devices that were sanctioned by IT.
FatCloud Helps Developers Move Faster
May you live in interesting times. This wish can be viewed as a blessing or a curse. It's a little bit of both if you're a software developer these days.
Drifty Helps Expedite Prototype-to-Development of Software Solutions
It's an exciting time for Ben Sperry and Max Lynch.
They launched their little company just last year, and already Drifty has launched three products, been accepted into the incubator project TechStars, and gotten accolades from jQuery Mobile and Rackspace.
BYOD Security: Use the Internet to Protect the Internet
The answer isn't as complicated as one would expect. Attackers use a systematic process in the course of carrying out an attack campaign. This process is known as the kill chain. As attackers move from one phase of the kill chain to another, they leave behind clues about their activity. IT organizations can use this information to uncover hidden infections in what is known as network-based threat discovery.
OpenFlow SDN Solutions Increase Operator Flexibility
Operators are living in challenging times. They have entered an era where double-digit traffic growth is outpacing cost reductions.
Embracing and Defending Against BYOD
Our research has found that most of the iPhones and Android smartphones in use in the North American workplace are owned by employees, not their employers. Dropbox is used in 58 percent of organizations and many other, employee-deployed, file-sync/storage, telephony and other applications have found significant penetration in the workplace.
Software Eats the Carrier Network
Marc Andreessen famously commented that software is eating the world. Boy, was he right.
TMC Announces IT Excellence Award Winners
These awards recognize the creators of technology that demonstrate leadership and innovation to the global industry. As part of this awards effort, INTERNET TELEPHONY recognizes companies whose products have shown improvements in its clients' business and honors the best IP communications solutions in the world.
UNSi Explodes with Growing Partner Ecosystem, Expanded Portfolio, M&A
UNSi is positioning itself to become a communications powerhouse.
Kansas City Cleaner Taps Sprint for Fleet Efficiency
It also uses Geotab, a large telematics supplier to enterprise fleets. Geotab offers customers the GO6, a proprietary device that connects via a J-BUS adaptor and can be used with Garmin navigation, Iridium satellite, sensors, and an expander cable called the IOX. The plug-and-play solutions from Geotab, which insert into a vehicle's OBD-II port, increase a fleet's productivity and safety, and are economical, according to the companies.
ACT! Creator Finds a New Orbit
Despite his success at building a CRM leader, Muhney said he is not a fan of CRM. As big and successful as it is, the aggregate user base of all big CRM systems amounts to just 14 million people worldwide, he said, adding that there are 500 million iPhone users alone.
On Rad's Radar
Assess, Address Marketing
The big problem with most channel programs is the lack of marketing. There are three pieces usually missing from channel marketing.
INTERNET TELEPHONY Announces TMC Labs Innovation Award Winners
Welcome to the 14th annual INTERNET TELEPHONY magazine TMC Labs Innovation Awards where we honor innovative technologies. This year we had some interesting applicants, including one that helps companies with antiquated CAT3 cabling deploy VoIP, another that brings Skype-like functionality to carriers networks, and yet another that bundles a phone system with specialized dentistry software with deep integration. TMC Labs has enjoyed discovering and testing innovative products and services within the VoIP industry for many years, and one of the things we enjoy most is awarding TMC Labs Innovation Awards to innovative VoIP products.
Yo Agents! Start Blogging!
Content marketing is the hot thing now. It was the hot thing in 2004 when I started blogging, but that was before Google started changing their algorithm frequently. Content marketing means adding new and relevant information to your website, your blog, LinkedIn and your G+ account.
Agent of Change: Alliance Discusses Reorganization, Channel Challenges & Equity Plan Update
The past couple years have been especially challenging ones for the channel at large and the Agent Alliance in particular. INTERNET TELEPHONY recently checked in with Bill Power, CEO of the Agent Alliance, on how the group is evolving to help its membership address new trends in networking and to get an update on the organization's legal tangle with Blue Casa, the new owner of TNCI. Below is a paraphrased version of that conversation.
Joint Initiatives Put Sales Organizations on a New Go-to-Market Path
Emerging markets and the small- and medium-sized business sector are all the rage today. That is where the opportunities are. That is where promising and potentially profitable new customer segments can be found. It is where companies should look for growth.
Why Startups Should Consider the Option of Equipment Financing
Economic times are challenging many businesses today, and the current economic environment poses even greater difficulties for entrepreneurial startups and small businesses that are struggling to get established, grow or just stay in business. The characteristic innovation, agility and hard work of these businesses are precisely what the U.S. economy needs to get moving again; however, their nature of being newer, less capitalized or less established creates a catch-22 that impedes their ability to secure the credit they need. That's why it has never been more important for startups and small businesses to understand their options for financing the equipment needed to operate and grow their businesses.
And Then There Were Three...
As I write this, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski and long-standing FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell have packed their offices and departed from the FCC. While President Obama has nominated Tom Wheeler to replace Genachowski, we will likely have to wait for Senate Republican leaders to nominate McDowell's replacement so both candidates can go through Senate confirmation hearings at the same time. This is typically not a quick process. In the interim, Acting Chairwoman Mignon L. Clyburn and our two newest commissioners, Jessica Rosenworcel and Ajit Pai, will carry on the work of the FCC.
Avaya Takes Networking Lead in SPB
Many of you will remember when Avaya was actually the enterprise division of Lucent before the company spun off just over 12 years ago. Randy Cross, the company's director of PLM, discussed how there is a rapid move to software in the networking market, and SPB is an evolution of MPLS, allowing services to be created dynamically on the server where the applications reside or on the switches nearest the users.
Cloud & Data Center
The Voice Network in the Cloud
In my earlier article Carrier Voice: Ditching Boxes for Clouds, I outlined the factors leading to a new solution to the next-generation voice conundrum - the efficiency and new possibilities of IP networks in conflict with the cost and complexity of VoIP/IMS equipment along with the reality that service providers are challenged to grow voice ARPU in the all-IP era. That solution is cloud-based voice platforms, which allow service providers to get out of the voice network building business and focus on growing their business.
Cloud & Data Center
Rolling in the Deep: Database Startup Helps Businesses Dive into Big Data
The company's leaders say DeepDB is a new approach to database architecture that addresses performance and scale, and which they report has outperformed existing databases by 10 to 100 times across a wide variety of use cases.
Driving TV Viewership via Mobile Devices
Prime time rating is a strong tool for broadcasters and content rights owners to get quantitative feedback on their programming and audience engagement. It is a specific time frame in which %X of the general population becomes a captive audience, and as such, it should be nurtured and developed.
Telepresence - It's What's Next for Videos and Education
In 1980, U.S. cognitive scientist Marvin Minsky introduced the concept of telepresence, giving a remote participant the feeling of being present in a different location. Nearly 25 years later that theory is in operation across the world and importantly for us, in education.
What to Consider When Address BYOD Security and Management
Aragon Research Inc. in a research note released earlier this year talks about the need for a holistic approach to BYD management and writes: "Enterprise device, application and infrastructure management tools are rapidly evolving to help manage different aspects of the new mobile, bring-your-own enterprise. In the near term, businesses will face a fragmented market that includes public and private app stores along with MDM, MAM and emerging EMM vendors. Each of them is valuable for certain business needs and circumstances, but the coming consolidation in this market will have important consequences, and should be reflected in relatively short-term planning."
Vonage Goes Native With WebRTC
Vonage Mobile's product is targeted at mobile video, audio and text. The peer-to-peer nature of WebRTC fits perfectly into Vonage Mobile's architecture where it offers a directory and connectivity service on other people's networks. Further, the company offers out of the box integration with your address book and integration with your Facebook account. The app uses SMS to invite non users of the service to participate. The interface is uncluttered and intuitive to use. Additionally, the company is using SIP signaling so the app leverages the substantial investment that Vonage Mobile has already sunk into its SIP network.
White Spaces: Bridging the Digital Divide
In a world that runs on technology, it's hard to believe that about one third of the global population is unable to access the Internet - Americans accounting for approximately six million of that number. These aren't people who have chosen to fall off the grid, or the others who don't know how to turn a computer on. These are regular folks who want Internet access, but happen to live in some of the most rugged, expansive, or under-developed areas across the planet.
Digital Ordering Means Business for Restaurants
For restaurants that live and die by speed of service (namely of the fast-casual and quick-service varieties), the proliferation of smartphones represent an opportunity for restaurant operators to extend their reach beyond the confines of a physical building and into their customers' hands via digital ordering.
TMC Labs Innovation Awards UC 2013
It's rare that we have back-to-back year winners, so we were surprised to see two innovative high-end video telepresence systems from ClearOne and LifeSize win again this year with completely new products from the ones that won last year. This year marks the 14th annual TMC Labs Innovation Awards where we honor products and services that have unique and innovative features that often differentiate them from their competitors. For 2013 we have 20 TMC Labs Innovation Awards winners.
Corporate, Governmental Responses to Cyber Attacks Are Making Strides
For eight years, Arbor Networks has been tracking the cyber threat landscape through our annual Worldwide Infrastructure Security Report. Of course, much has changed over that time period. The peak DDoS attack size rising from 400mbps to well over 100gbps is just the start. The rise of stealthy application-layer attacks and the rise of hacktivism have dramatically changed the game for network operators and enterprises alike.
Harnessing Technology to Enable Real-Time Crime Centers
Government agencies ultimately align to one clear focus: to help our cities become places where people and businesses want to establish themselves. Government leaders understand the need to improve public safety performance continually for our cities to thrive. However, these leaders contend with the fact that taxpayers want to pay less, but still expect improvements and advancements in protection, safety and service - resulting in the economic challenge of doing more with less.
How to Attack IT Security Threats
On Aug.15, 2012, Saudi Arabia's national oil and gas company, Aramco, suffered a debilitating cyber attack. More than 30,000 computers were rendered inoperable by the Shamoon virus. U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta described this virus as the most destructive weapon ever used against the business sector.
Will Enterprises Miss Out on WebRTC Innovation?
As WebRTC gathers steam in the consumer world, a growing question is whether or not enterprises will be able to take advantage of the many innovative use cases that are emerging. Sure, companies see the potential of WebRTC to deliver rich business-to-business and business-to-consumer collaboration across a range of devices and applications.
Convergence of Web, Video and Mobile Fuel Cloud Videoconferencing Growth
Videoconferencing is moving from a high-end luxury to a must-have business feature. End users expect a videoconferencing experience that is ubiquitous, cost effective and can be delivered with high quality and a guaranteed service level. There are a variety of videoconferencing solution alternatives to fulfill this growing demand, but a confluence of trends in web, video and mobile technologies is expected to specifically boost demand for cloud videoconferencing.
How to Identify Likely Hazards During LTE Network Deployments
An irony of the digital world is that the biggest of big data is being generated by the smallest of devices: smartphones, tablets and other handhelds. Photos, videos, social media posts, Internet browsing, e-commerce - just about every aspect of online activity starts with or funnels through mobile devices and networks; all this on top of voice calls and SMS messages. With the rollout of 4G LTE, data loads will only get larger and faster, potentially placing severe strains on mobile networks during the transition from 2G and 3G systems.
Getting Vertical — K-12 Education
N.J. School District Hits the Wall with Legacy Connectivity: But That Opens New Doors for Higher Bandwidth, Better Customer Service
It’s amazing how a less-than-ideal situation can sometimes work out so beautifully in the end. That’s the moral of this story, featuring Jeff Janover and the Wall Township Public Schools.
Getting Vertical — K-12 Education
How Schools Can and Should Fit into Our National Broadband Plans
The United States is finally on track to develop a national broadband policy. Unfortunately, there are very few public resources available to carry it out. In this environment of limited government funding, the bang-for-the-buck question becomes paramount: What broadband policies will deliver the greatest value? While many focus on unserved and underserved areas, an equally important priority is to ensure that our community anchor institutions — our libraries, schools, and health care entities — have sufficient broadband capacity.
Business Automation Software Companies Address Managed Services
Managing all the internal and external jobs and workflows at an IT company can be a daunting task. But business automation software companies like ConnectWise and Tigerpaw Software Inc. help networking, telecommunications, and systems integration companies manage their various processes. Both companies, which have close relationships with the channel, recently have made some significant changes, as well as introduced new initiatives to help better address marketplace requirements, such as needs related to the emergence of managed services.
On RAD's Radar
Net-Head Part II
Last month I wrote about the shift in mentality between traditional Bell-head telco types and the data-centric net-head. In a move that can be considered net-head-ish, everything is moving to the cloud, including voice.
The Channel Perspective
UC is Even More Beneficial to Post-Recession SMBs
It is said that small- and medium-sized businesses feel the impacts of a recession earlier than large companies, but they also recover faster. Well here’s a newsflash: We’re in a recovery, and SMBs are starting to buy again, albeit with a critical eye. This is good news for the channel, because unified communications lends itself easily to a positive discussion around improved efficiency and return on investment.
INTERNET TELEPHONY Newsletter
Sign up for our free weekly INTERNET TELEPHONY Newsletter!
Get the latest expert news, reviews & resources. Tailored specifically for VoIP and IP Communications.