11/02/2014 - C3 VoIP-150 Announced By Cambium Networks
06/02/2014 - VoXox Makes an Acquisition
San Diego's own VoxOx has acquired has international calling service PokeTALK from E Mobile, Inc As part of the deal PokeTALK will transfer its technology, intellectual property, and partnership agreements with Datawind, Digital Delivery Networks, Inc. (DDNI), Expansys, Hewlett Packard (HP), Lenovo, Medion, and Samsung Electronics to Voxox. Personally I've never tried PokeTalk but like so many VoIP services this is an OTT play and brings VoXox to browsers..
Given the web browser capabilities of PokeTalk and the lack of that capability previously at VoXox its likely the purchase will speed up the companies efforts with WebRTC.
According to VoXox "PokeTALK has been enabling consumers to make international calls through Web-based and mobile applications (iOS, Android). The PokeTALK service is also accessible on various tablets and laptops through a link preloaded by the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs)."
30/01/2014 - Verizon’s IP VoIP Interconnection Game
21/01/2014 - Verizon Signs Agreements for Four IP VoIP Interconnections despite Continuous Regulatory Issues
17/12/2013 - Velocity VoIP Uses PortaOne and OpenCNAM to Offer Caller ID to Wholesale/Retail Customers in Seconds
04/12/2013 - Thoughts on WebRTC and OTT Services
Just about two weeks ago I was attending the ITU Telecom World where I joined Dean Bubley's panel and then moderating the TADS Summit in Bangkok, Thailand. Bangkok is an interesting place and my mobile experience, not only with a SIM but seeing how mobile centric that part of the world is, even more than what I experience in Europe or the USA exposed me to a lot of new ideas, as the TADS Summit served to reaffirm many forward looking ideas I've had about WebRTC and OTT.
The biggest concept I heard expressed was "Fast Fail" an approach that developer and early stage entrepreneurs have taken on. Being the optimist, I immediately spun that into the idea of succeed soon. And that's where WebRTC is. It has to succeed soon and the companies working to develop new method of communications have to learn that failing fast doesn't mean giving up. It means doing it better, and succeeding sooner.
OTT apps like WhatsApp and Line have succeeded soon and continue to grow. They are taking revenue away from the major telcos on one side (the SMS market) but at the same time shifting costs to other networks or the network side of the telco, while reducing the telcos labor and overhead cost.
Thus I would contend that OTT services like WebRTC don't really replace the carrier, they simply shift the burden of operating and delivering the service from the service provider to being the carrier while someone else operates the service. This is not much different from a concessionaire serving food inside a stadium while the landlord collects a piece of the action without having to buy the food or staff the stands.
The more a carrier opens up their network to OTT players and lets them take on the burden of building the audience, managing the relationship, and the less marketing the carrier or mobile operator has to do, the more profitable they can become because they can invest in technology that makes them better and more competitive versus their competitors, while providing the best field of play for the newcomers who use software and smarts vs. hardware and brawn to power their business.
The best and most profitable carriers will be the ones who embrace the new OTT players, find ways to incorporate WebRTC technology into their platforms or simply open up their pipe and network to let them in so they can carry more traffic.
Isn't that what carriers should be doing?
18/11/2013 - EPC Opts for Ontario VOIP firm Instead of MTS
14/11/2013 - The Future of Telecom Is Next Week In Bangkok
Bangkok may be one of the last places you would think is where the future of telecommunications would be happening, as it's not exactly where one thinks of as a tech hot bed. But the 2013 ITU Telecom World is there, and that's where the newly minted TADS Summit will also be held.
While the ITU event is more about the establshed setting the future, the TADS Summit will be where the future gets statred. The two events, overlapping, and featuring many of the same participants will provide the framework for innovation. I'll be there, so keep an eye on this space for news.
05/11/2013 - 3D VoIP Video Calling Technology Announced By Ozeki
As we wind down fall and head into winter I'll be heading to Asia for two very important conferences and congresses. The ITU has asked me to be a part of the Dean Bubley led disucssion on Telcos and OTT-so off I go to Bangkok and that esteemed event in November.
That's immediately followed by what may be the most defining event about application development and Telcos ever organized, the TADS Summit. Long time peer Alan Quayle asked me to be a chair of a tract, but he's done the heavy lifting pulling together a really stellar group of knowledge leaders--those who are really doing it, not just talking about it, when it comes to how APIs and Apps are changing telecom as we know it.
If you look at this holistically, the two events in Bangkok during the same week blend the old with the new. While the ITU will not have many of the upstarts and disruption minded, TADS will.
23/09/2013 - Telzio Make A Business Look Bigger
Just as Phone.com focuses on the SOHO and Small Business market with a very complete and full featured set of services to separate them from the Grasshoppers of the world, a new player out of Los Angeles, Telzio is looking to take the same approach and go after the market that Jive is tackling, with larger businesses who are working both nationally and internationally with what is best described as a spin it up and deliver service approach very similar to past client Aretta that was acquired by cBeyond a few years back.
The core value of Telzio lies in their rapid deployment set up and automation engine that gets a business up and running in very short order. Compared to larger servcies, where provisioning is the pain point, this core part of their value proposition makes them an interesting and new player in a space of sameness.
Put this startup on your watch list.
22/09/2013 - Geddes: The Sensible vs Stupid Network
Pal Martin Geddes, one of the better, brighter and more forward thinking people in telecom today, authored a missive to his newsletter followers entitled "Rise of the Sensible Network" last week. It's an updated and padoxical viewpoint on the famed report by David Isenberg entitled “The Rise of the Stupid Network” that is often considered as the seminal treatise on the way the telcos went when it came to sealing their own fate.
Geddes longform article is a very strong read, and provides the basis of so much that will be discussed in a series of upcoming foundation events he'll be speaking at that set the stage for where telecom and the Internet are going, especially on the subject of OTT based communications. OTT is something that Martin, and his regular Future of Vocie speakermate, Dean Bubley and even I espouse and cover in our blogs and speaking engagements, with prime examples coming from the likes of HookFlash's Erik Lagerway and uberConference's Craig Walker, both of whom have all been very actively involved with for many years in delivering, or from services like Skype, Truphone (client), the now departed Gizmo, Google Hangouts, WhatsApp, Line, etc.
Martin will be speaking at some upcoming events, and this topic is far from over.
8th October, London - Future of Voice workshop.
19th-22nd November, Bangkok - ITU Telecom World.
21st-22nd November, Bangkok - Telecom Application Developer Summit.
28th-29th November, Berlin - Future Seamless Communications Forum.
3rd-5th March, San Francisco - eComm.
The news sites are a flutter with the realization that Microsoft if buying Nokia for less money they paid for Skype, hyping the idea that ex Microsoftee Steven Elop is the potential heir apparent to Steve Ballmer.
I personally think this is simply a thinning of the herd, and as new stars rise, older ones with assets -the Nokia patent pool, massive distribution teams, a very skilled hardware design and manufacturing team was attractive to Microsoft, especially with all the cash they have offshore. They pick up a team to build things and with their own sales force and mobile operator deals actually sell them, and what's more they reduce by a factor of 4 their royalty payments.
Unlike Dell, which use sub-manufacturers to make computers, now MSFT has it's own plants and people, and unlike Dell Microsoft has now has a team that knows how to design and build very good hardware--you never heard bad things about Nokia smartphones-more often you just didn't find them when they were really hot, or when you did, they sold very well and impact the top line for the Finnish company. This is exactly why Dell needs to buy BlackBerry. They get smartphones and own an OS. The world is moving from powerful desktops and laptops to smarter, faster and more powerful tablets and phones, and while BB's issues are largely sales, Dell's folks know how to do that.
But back to Microsoft. They have a leadership problem. Elop while a possible answer, he will likely be looked at as a returnee, so not the right choice as picking someone from the existing executive suite, even a slighlty reconsitituted one means the rest on the team feel passed over, and the rivalry it causes during the run up to the annointing is also very bad for business, as the direct reports all line up like gladiators. That leaves looking outside--way outside. And I mean way outside. Hardware is not what the future is about. Software is. And consumer marketing models are where the thinking is. Look at Netflix. Look at Nike. Look elsewhere...
Enter Yahoo-and a whole new management team. What they are doing is all about aqui-hires and building a new team from the inside out. In essence the Yahoo leadership is buying up pieces and parts -- that are all human capital, taking some of the newly acquired IP and incorporating it into what will be a very efficient mobile and cloud services focused team. This is exactly where Microsoft (and Dell) are both super light.
In my view Yahoo becomes an attractive aqui-buy for either Dell or Microsoft. It gives either a new leadership team, cash, cloud and mobile. It also brings new, next generation services, which Dell lacks in a consumerization of the enterprise model world.
Personally, I am not surprised by the Nokia buy by Microsoft, as the writing has been on the wall since 2012's CES where I saw nothing new with the Surface line of tablet PCs. The lack of 3G modules then was a huge OOPS for Microsoft, and something that Nokia's engineers never would have missed.
One more thing--Nokia has a massive developer program, and rich API's. Don't be surprised if Microsoft looks at Twilio, plugs that into Skype/Lync and then delivers it all to the new handsets. In an LTE era, voice is no longer about minutes, and the data pipe of wireless is the new wire. We're far from done seeing buying going on..it's a great time to be in M&A.
20/08/2013 - Does L.A. Really Want Citywide WiFi?
The City of Los Angeles is considering building out a citywide Wi-Fi network. It's a good idea, but rumor has it that they are considering an anchor tenant model, similar to what Earthlink tried to be in Philadelphia, San Francisco, Anaheim and a few other cities. The model, which some former execs I know from Earthlink were not in favor of from the start, is fraught with the challenge of one backer who wants to be both the builder and then the manager which operates and maintains the network.
I'm much more in favor of the multi-tenant model that exists in France where the operations costs are shared by mobile and fixed line operators, who in turn provide access to their customers. In Los Angeles this type of model would be thus open to the likes of Time Warner and Comcast to market to their customers as well, much like what they are doing elsewhere.
Given the size of Los Angeles, one also has to wonder if the whole City needs to be lit up, or if it would make more sense to build out the city and county in stages, where they gauge adoption, behavior and usage.