VoIP

VoIP / Featured Blogs

ICANN’s Governance Conundrum

After reading Steve Delbianco's recent CircleID article entitled The Tale of Two Governance Models I was torn. On one hand I agreed and supported Steve's comments about the strength of the bottom-up consensus driven model upon which ICANN was originally founded. As I am about to begin my thirty fifth ICANN regional meeting over the last eleven years, it is a model which I still believe in and fiercely fight to defend. However, on the other hand I look back over the last eleven years... more

Comcast’s Demand for a Video Surcharge From Its Level 3 “Peer”

According to Level 3, a major long haul Internet Service Provider, Comcast has demanded a "recurring fee" when Level 3 hands off movie and other high capacity video traffic for delivery by Comcast to one of the cable company's subscribers. This demand warrants scrutiny, perhaps less in the context of Network Neutrality and more in terms of further diversification (unraveling) of the peering process. more

Cisco Collaboration Summit - Where Unified Communications Could Be Going

This year's Cisco Collaboration Summit was a step up from last year, and I say that for good reason. Last year's event was good -- all of Cisco's events are good -- but the venue was too small and it took away from the messaging. For 2010, Cisco went out of town to the classy and classic Arizona Biltmore in Phoenix. They don't build them like this anymore, and to me, this setting did far more justice for what Cisco has to say about collaboration. more

Will the Cloud Kill Telecom Vendors?

There are many big questions in telecom these days, and this is one that's on my mind right now. Over the past few months, I've participated in events or briefed with leading vendors in our space, namely Avaya, ShoreTel, BroadSoft, Aastra, Metaswitch, Mitel, Interactive Intelligence, and this week Cisco. Every analyst has their own core circle of vendors they stay close to, but I'd say that's a pretty fair representation of who's driving telecom. To varying degrees, all of these vendors have a cloud story, and the more I hear it, the more I start to wonder what it really means. more

Avaya’s web.alive - Another Approach for Unified Communications?

Earlier this month, Avaya held a new type of customer event in Toronto, called Evolutions. They have been looking for better ways to bring customers together, so aside from their global event, they've put together Evolutions, which has a regional focus. The first one was recently held in Mexico to great success, and my understanding is that Canada was the next trial event, and that's what I attended in downtown Toronto... I'm almost certain I was the only Canadian analyst invited, so this may well be the only place you'll hear about Evolutions. more

Why Wouldn’t Skype Want 30 Million Paying Customers?

Skype has cut Nimbuzz off. What that means is that users of Nimbuzz' popular mobile clients will no longer be able to make calls using the SkypeOut network. According to Skype themselves, it was for unspecified violations of the Skype API terms and license... more

Google Voice: Race to the Bottom for Telephony - or Something Else?

Just when you thought making phone calls couldn't get any cheaper, along comes last week's news from Google about their latest iteration of Google Voice. There have been several steps along the way for Google to get to this point, and there are a host of reasons why this news is of interest to service providers of all stripes. I often write about how certain technologies and disruptive forces change the business of being a service provider, and this is but the latest example. more

Network Neutrality is the Wrong Fight!

We shouldn't settle for network neutrality. It's a poor substitute for what we had and much less than what we need. Let me explain. There are two topics to discuss. The first is "common carriage," a centuries old legal concept that applied to the US telecom industry throughout most of the 20th century. The second involves communications protocols. Both topics are complex, so I will cover only what's needed to understand why we shouldn't accept network neutrality and why, at a minimum, we should fight for enforcement of existing common carriage rules. more

Skype Goes IPO - What Should Service Providers Do?

Last week's news about Skype's planned IPO brings a renewed focus on what constitutes a service provider these days, and perhaps more importantly, what forms the basis for its valuation? We all know how the advent of IP has turned the economics of telephony on its head, and the drivers of value continue to shift from the physical world of network infrastructure to the virtual world of software, the Web and now the cloud.
 more

Are Service Providers Giving Up on Landline too Soon?

Interesting times in the carrier space, for sure. While most readers of this column are focused on the business market, it's hard to ignore what's occurring in the consumer space right now. Being based in Toronto, I happen to be struck by the similar trends shaping on both sides of the border. Over the past few days, we've seen earnings reports from major telcos and cablecos, and these businesses seem to be going in opposite directions. more