VoIP

VoIP / Recently Commented

Moving Beyond Telephone Numbers - The Need for a Secure, Ubiquitous Application-Layer Identifier

Do "smart" parking meters really need phone numbers? Does every "smart meter" installed by electric utilities need a telephone number? Does every new car with a built-in navigation system need a phone number? Does every Amazon Kindle (and similar e-readers) really need its own phone number? In the absence of an alternative identifier, the answer seems to be a resounding "yes" to all of the above. more»

Follow a Phishing Case in Real Time: postfinances.com / Swiss Post

It is just another phishing case. Why should I care? I happened to receive my own copy of the phishing email message. Most Internet users will just smile bitterly before deleting it. I checked it to see why it had gone through the spam filters. It had no URL in the text but a reply-to address. So it needed a valid domain name, and had one: postfinances.com. PostFinance (without trailing "s") is the payment system of the Swiss Post. It has millions of users. more»

It's Not Paranoia if They Are Really After You!

In the latest development from the World Conference on International Telecommunications, a new "compromise proposal" has been leaked to wcitleaks.org. This proposal is certainly no compromise, as it not only is a bald faced power grab by the sponsors (Russia, UAE, China, Saudi Arabia, Algeria, Sudan at this point), but shows a stunning lack of comprehension of how the Internet works and how it is currently governed. It also shows that the coalition of Civil Society groups and private sector organisations that have focused on WCIT have been correct all along.  more»

Carriers Skirting Rules on Network Neutrality vs. Free's Innovative Network

From will they ever learn department, we are once again seeing attempts by incumbent carriers to skirt rules around network neutrality. They tried and failed with UBB. Now they are at it again with "speed boost" technologies. The two technologies at question are Verizon's "Turbo" service and Roger's "SpeedBoost". more»

FCC to Hold Two December Workshops on PSTN Transition to New Technologies

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently issued a public notice that it will be holding two workshops on the transition of the public switched telephone network (PSTN) to "new technologies" such as voice-over-IP (VoIP). The workshops will be held on December 6 and 14, 2011, at the FCC's office in Washington, DC. The public notice states the goal as... more»

Whom Do We Regulate when the Phone Monopolies Are Gone? - Universal Access

After a more than 100 year run, the end is nigh for plain old telephone service (POTS). Through most of recent history POTS was provided by monopolies, which were regulated at both the federal and state level. The new world is much more competitive; we can talk via cell phones, computers, traditional phones hooked to a variety of devices instead of the old phone line, and a plethora of new gadgets like tablets. Voice service no longer has to be vertically integrated. more»

Whom Do We Regulate when the Phone Monopolies Are Gone?

Once upon a time in a universe not very long ago phone service in the US was provided by regulated monopolies. AT&T was the big one and there were (and are) hundreds of small ILECs (Independent Local Exchange Carriers) around the country. These monopolies were regulated both at the federal and state level. Then we began on the long road toward competition and deregulation. more»

The Ugly End of the Phone Network

I was a little early. "By the end of President Obama's first term, there won't be any more copper landlines left in the country, I blogged just after Obama had been elected. Before that I'd prophesized the end of POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service) by 2010. Nevertheless, the end is nigh. And it's gonna be ugly without some planning. more»

Moore's Law and the Economics of Abundance

Moore's Law explains why the price of everything electronic keeps going down; but now Moore's Law is starting to have an effect on much more than technology prices. The costs of energy, medicine, law, education, financial transactions, and government itself are falling because of Moore's Law's relentless progress. But these cost decreases are not being fully reflected in the prices we pay for all these things. more»

Has the FCC Created a Stone Too Heavy for It to Lift?

After five years of bickering, the FCC passed an Open Internet Report & Order on a partisan 3-2 vote this week. The order is meant to guarantee that the Internet of the future will be just as free and open as the Internet of the past. Its success depends on how fast the Commission can transform itself from an old school telecom regulator wired to resist change into an innovation stimulator embracing opportunity. One thing we can be sure about is that the order hasn't tamped down the hyperbole that's fueled the fight to control the Internet's constituent parts for all these years. more»

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»

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»

VIPR: New Developments in the VoIP Market

This is a new development in the VoIP market. This is how one of my colleagues, Cullen Jennings explained it to me. Today we have two widely deployed global identifiers for reaching people. One is delegated address out of DNS and the other is phone numbers. So I consider an address like email: carol@johnson.com or xmpp:john@gmail.com to roughly be out of the DNS namespace and phone number to be out of the E.164 name space. Phone numbers have lots of parts that are not cool, but they also have some cool parts... more»

Unlimited VoIP Offers Starting to Appear in Africa

VoIP has been banned across most of Africa for a long time, feared by the state-owned telcos as a way for alternative service providers to bypass them with international calls, eroding a very lucrative part of their business. At profit margins of several thousand percent in some cases, it is not surprising that unlicensed operators have sprung up all over the continent, risking huge fines, confiscation of their equipment and even jail terms. more»

Skype's End User License Agreement

I was looking at the End User License Agreement to which Skype wants people to assent. I noticed the following odd provision (Section 3.2.4): You hereby grant to Skype a non-exclusive, worldwide, perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free, sublicensable and transferable licence to Use the Content in any media in connection with the Skype Software, the Products and the Skype Website. more»