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November 2005

Posts from October 2005

Nero Introduces SipTalk

Nero's new SipTalk may be worth checking out.

Here's another example, like Belkin, of a company with a solution trying to create a market. The key here is Nero's using a softclient to break it open for them.

Sadly, there's no Mac client out yet.

Nero is working with Global Touch Telecom on the termination and voice traffic handling.

Level3 Buys WilTel

Reuters is reporting that Level3 has bought WilTel.

In many ways this fills in some geographic gaps in where Level3's network reaches.

Here's Level3's official statement via PR Newswire.

WilTel's seller, Leucadia National Corp was an attempted buyer at one point of MCI. My guess is being that fizzled their interest in WilTel waned and the need or ability to blend it into something bigger also died with it.

My view is that consolidation in the telecom world is continuing. First AT&T and SBC tied the knot. Then MCI and Verizon joined up. Smaller deals are happening, but this marks the consolidation of two players who built fiber networks in the 90s for what was anticipated to occur this decade. Level3 also owns what was the Genuity network, the third SIP based carrier. In essence Level3 has become the last man standing of that troika and along with BroadWing now has likely the newest technology and fiber build out in the USA.

The weak link though remains the lack of an Asian presence for Level3. Currently they work largely through partners in that part of the world, while in Europe having their own operation. One has to wonder what shoe they will drop next, because I don't think this move, a good one, is their last.

Om weighs in with some thoughts.

Microsoft's Virtual Office-Yahoo

So when you read through this post one thing is missing. VoIP. So that's where I come in.

When Microsoft purchased Teleo everyone wonder where it would fall into the roadmap of service offerings. First thoughts including mine were as part of LCS, which as an underlying foundation seems to make sense. But remember, Microsoft is to technology products what Proctor and Gamble is to consumer products. They take a great idea that someone else has, blend it into to their product mix and voila, there's something everyone starts using even though other products are better. It's called Mass Marketing and in tech no one does it better than Microsoft.

So when one looks at the idea of a Hosted Office, adds in MSN Messenger, then Teleo's technology (which already integrates with Outlook) one has to begin to get a clearer picture of why Microsoft bought Teleo.

Now, go one step further. While Microsoft has been busy working within the desktop realm for almost it's entire life (save for things like servers and media streaming production) their new partner in the Instant Messaging realm of Interoperability Yahoo has been living in the web based world of service offerings.

Take the two together and you have a potentially very interesting combination that can go well beyond consumer "chat". Yahoo markets very well to their audience their array of Web 1.0 services. Mail, calendar, address book. Yahoo doesn't have any applications that really are "desktop" apps per se, instead offer apps that "integrate" very well with those from guess who? Yup, Microsoft. To that end Microsoft has the device end down pat--PC, Mac, PDA, Smartphones. Starting to see the connections. They also have the largest installed user base of office productivity applications in use today via, pardon the pun, Office.

Creating the "virtual workspace" means the need for a "hosted office" and that also means solving the need of the market. With gas prices skyrocketing here in the USA and the geographic radius that people choose to live who work in tech meccas like Silicon Valley, San Diego, Austin, SF, LA, growing wider by the day, telecommuting, remote working, distance workers will become more and more commonplace.

A hosted solution that does what Office does, in one suite of programs may not be the best in class of any, it will just all work together, and that's where Voice via Teleo comes in right now.

UMTS To Be Tried Soon

I just grabbed a pay as you go card from Cingular and tomorrow I plan on trying out UMTS on my new Nokia N90 phone.

Between EDGE, UMTS on GSM, plus GPRS I'm very confused but hope to make some sense out of what works where. It seems the Cingular purchase of AT&T gave them the ability to leap past T-Mobile. While it's not EvDO, the CDMA based platform that Verizon, Sprint and now Helio (formerly SK-Earthlink) use, the features and functions of the N90 made me interested enough to learn more.

VoIP's Pressure Drop

The late Robert Palmer (known for Sneakin Sally Through The Alley) and later for his collaboration with some of the members of Duran Duran called Power Station-the remake of T. Rex's Bang a Gong and Some Like it Hot were both killer tunes also sang a song called Pressure Drop.

Given the very Jamaican reggae like feel it had I felt the reference to one of Rock's best vocalists rather apropos. In Jamaica the pressure of VoIP is being felt by one of the telecom world's largest monopolists, C&W.

Clearly as Robert sang the track originally performed by Toots and the Maytals, who in the early 70's were second only to Bob Marley and the Wailers in stature when it came to Jamaica's second most popular export at the time (and I don't mean Blue Mountain Coffee-my favorite Jamaican grown product) C&W has heard the words "pressure's gone a drop on you" and is responding.

UPDATE---> A HAT TRICK scoring reader has reminded me that the winner in this deal could be Net2Phone.

Mobile LifeStyle Blog

Realizing I'll be very Nomadic for the next month, well beyond the way I've ever been I'm taking time to look at more ways to "stay connected" the closing words of KenRadio's World Technology RoundUp that I tend to co-host or contribute to as often as time permits.

More and more I'm seeing blogs and blog post that catch my eye, especially the once that cross over into to Voice 2.0 and Mobile 3.0 as I want to start labeling things.

Voice 2.0 is what is beyond simply PSTN over IP. It's what companies like iotum, Popular Telephony, TelEvolution, (gee they are all clients-wonder why) are doing to really make a change. But non clients like Yahoo, Microsoft (okay they sorta were as a sponsor of the World Technology Roundup), BridgePort Networks, are solidly realizing that there's more to their business than just replacing the PSTN.

I realized it's also happening in Mobile/Wireless. What used to be called convergence is really what these new movements are all about. But what's happening is not so much of only the converging aspects of technology and delivery, but very similar paths being taken in different sectors of communications (wireline, VoIP, Mobile, WiMax) that all build upon IP based platform. The question is will they all use the same technology platforms or recreate the idea of VHS vs. BETA all over again, only this time in how we all communicate.

The IMS Insider

IMS is going to become a lot more important and something that will be in the news.

Some are worried about its possible walled garden approach. I'm more interested in the applications and connectivity between IP and the wireless (i.e mobile, WiFi and WiMax) on the handoff levels it can enable to smoothly and simply occur, on a transparent basis.

This new blog seems to be looking to cover it.

This one line seems to sum it up:

We must remember that what IMS offers is not only new in the “what” of services, but also the “how” services are defined and delivered. There are certainly minimum technical requirements to be able to deliver these services (cf. our IMS Maturity/Readiness Index), but we've considered this in our suggested timescales for delivering these services..

The only problem is the editor is using Blogger at the basic level, making posts impossible to track back to. There's on great post at the end. It' an analysis of why eBay purchased Skype. Just scroll through.