VoIP

VoIP / Recently Commented

Telcos Must Become Major Destination Websites, Says Sun Chairman

Telecommunication companies need to go beyond just providing bandwidth and look into acquiring Internet destination sites that are heavily trafficked, Sun Chairman Scott McNealy said on Friday. "I have explained to every telco that either you become a destination site, or the destination site will become a telco," McNealy said at a news conference at Sun's Worldwide Education and Research Conference in San Francisco on Wednesday... more

On Comcast and Net Neutrality: Shouting Fire in a Theater

The Comcast traffic shaping case has stirred up passionate debate. Net neutrality proponents are calling for Comcast's head on a platter. The common argument is that Comcast's policy may stifle innovation and competition. If a service provider is allowed to exercise unregulated discretion in how it treats subscriber traffic, it is a slippery slope toward anti-competitive practices. Net neutrality says keep your hands off. Some are preaching net neutrality as if it were an inalienable human right like freedom of speech... more

IPv6 Over Satellite: Pie in the Sky?

I am writing this from the Satellite 2008 conference in Washington, D.C. As I make my way through the exhibits, I see many vendors advertising IP capabilities in their hardware products or network services. But when asked about IPv6 support, the common reply is a not so believable "it is on our roadmap" followed by a somewhat vague delivery date. Although IPv6 development has been slow across the board, it appears to be moving even more slowly in the satellite world... more

Call for Telecom Industry Wake-Up

As many of you know, I'm launching the Emerging Communications (eComm) conference -- taking place next month in Silicon Valley, at the Computer History Museum. Communications innovation has been stagnant, in my opinion, for nearly a decade. Telecommunications and Internet communications both seem to be at somewhat of an impasse. The communications industry needs a forum to help break through the stagnancy and highlight the huge opportunity space that is emerging. The stagnancy has been strikingly more so in telecommunications... more

IPv6: Do as I Say or Do as I Do?

How important is it for a vendor, service provider or integrator to be using a service or technology that it is pushing on its clients? When Voice over IP (VoIP) came out Cisco began a gigantic push, having its salespersons pitch it to anyone and everyone on their client list. But Cisco had not yet deployed VoIP within its own corporate network. It was still making use of traditional voice systems from vendors that today it probably considers competitors. Many people on the receiving end of a sales pitch recognized this... more

Stealing VoIP Services: Convicted Hacker Interviewed

Convicted hacker Robert Moore, who is set to go to federal prison this week, says breaking into 15 telecommunications companies and hundreds of businesses worldwide was incredibly easy because simple IT mistakes left gaping technical holes. more

Up to 300 Megawatt Worth of Keepalive Messages to be Saved by IPv6?

The Time Square Ball bringing in 2008 had more than 9,500 LED bulbs displaying 16 million colours while consuming power equivalent to about ten toasters. This compares to 600 incandescent and halogen bulbs adorning last year's Ball. Easy to forget that most mobile devices used by Time Square revelers were behind IPv4 NAT's and that always on applications such as Instant Messaging, Push e-mail, VoIP or location based services tend to be electricity guzzlers. It so happens that applications that we want always to be reachable have to keep sending periodic keepalive messages to keep the NAT state active... more

Walks Like a Telco, Yalks Like a Telco… Must be a Telco

Vonage's latest woes are written up by Om Malik in Vonage: How Low Can You Go. More interesting than Om's reportage (Sprint wins case, Vonage ordered to pay damages, stock drops to $1.30) is the commentary afterward, in which one reader takes Om to task for the "gleeful" way in which he reports the demise of the VoIP companies... Boosters made the argument that VoIP was fundamentally cheaper than the TDM systems that phone companies deploy, and so therefore they enjoyed a price advantage in the market place. Anyone in the business of supplying telecom equipment, however, will tell you that the argument is flawed... more

The Third Stage of the VoIP Rocket Never Fired

Ten years ago was the dawn of Voice over IP (VoIP). The pioneering Israeli company VocalTec had just released its VoIP software for PCs (it was named iPhone, BTW). Industry guru Jeff Pulver (whom I now partner with in FWD) had begun to hold his Voice on the Net (VON) shows. As the founder of VoIP startup ITXC, I was invited to give a keynote at VON in Boston. The evolution of VoIP, I opined with the requisite PowerPoint slides, will be like a three stage rocket. I was right about the first two stages and dead wrong about the third... more

Study Says Email Has Surpassed Telephony as Corporate Communication Tool

New research recently released by Dimension Data suggests that email usage has surpassed telephony as communication tool of choice in the workplace. The research surveyed 390 IT managers and 524 enterprise users across 13 countries in the United States, Asia Pacific and Europe, Middle East and Africa. According to the research, 100% of the end-users surveyed use e-mail, followed by fixed-line telephony (80%), mobile telephony (76%) and instant messaging (66%). more

Spam About to Get Worst, Says Former Spammer in New Book

A spammer who goes by the name "Ed" (and sometimes SpammerX ), has gotten out of the business and written a book, "Inside the Spam Cartel: Trade Secrets from the Dark Side". The book, which has had a particular level of interest in the law enforcement circles eager to learn more about the spam business, predicts the spam problem will only get worse. Ed says: "As broadband speeds increase, spammers will increasingly look to market goods by making VoIP calls or sending out videos..." more

CAN SPAM Applies Even Within a Single Provider

I recently came across a copy of a ruling in the bizarre case of MySpace vs. theglobe.com. Theglobe.com was the ultimate dot.com bubble company. It started up here in Ithaca, and went public at the peak of dot.com hysteria with one of the the greatest one-day price runups ever. Since then they bought and sold a variety of busineses, none of which ever made any money, including the Voiceglo VoIP service which appears to be what the spam was promoting. more

Are We Slowly Losing Control of the Internet?

I have long been intrigued by the question of how do we turn the internet into a lifeline grade infrastructure... My hope that this will occur soon or even within decades is diminishing. Most of us observe, almost daily, how even well established infrastructures tend to crumble when stressed, even slightly... I was at the O'Reilly Etel conference last week. The content was impressive and the people there were frequently the primary actors in the creation and deployment of VOIP. However, not once during the three days did I hear a serious discussion by a speaker or in the hallways about how this evolving system would be managed, monitored, diagnosed, or repaired. more

Addressing the Future Internet

What economic and social factors are shaping our future needs and expectations for communications systems? This question was the theme of a joint National Science Foundation (NSF) and Organisation for Economic Co Operation and Development (OECD) workshop, held on the 31st January of this year. The approach taken for this workshop was to assemble a group of technologists, economists, industry, regulatory and political actors and ask each of them to consider a small set of specific questions related to a future Internet. Thankfully, this exercise was not just another search for the next "Killer App", nor a design exercise for IP version 7. It was a valuable opportunity to pause and reflect on some of the sins of omission in today's Internet and ask why, and reflect on some of the unintended consequences of the Internet and ask if they were truly unavoidable consequences... more

Network Neutrality

In January of this year, a frontpage article on WSJ quoted Verizon Chief Executive Ivan Seidenberg "We have to make sure they (Google) don't sit on our network and chew up our capacity". Both AT&T and Bellsouth also made similar statements in the same article. A few days ago, Verizon repeat their call to "End Google's Free Lunch": "A Verizon Communications Inc. executive yesterday accused Google Inc. of freeloading for gaining access to people's homes using a network of lines and cables the phone company spent billions of dollars to build." ...it is no surprise that Network Neutrality, a concept where broadband providers are not to discriminate rivals when they charge tolls or prioritize traffic, is now on the agenda of the US Congress. more